Back from Japan, seeing TV in a new light

Breaking free of the Box.
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Back from Japan, seeing TV in a new light

Post by jlotus » Wed Mar 03, 2010 8:03 pm

Hi guys,

I'm just writing the say thanks for the awesome website.

I spent the last 3 years living and teaching English in Japan. I was living in a really rural rice farming village with no internet access so ended up watching *a lot* of Japanese TV. Japanese TV is really intense with loads of shouting, flashing colours, people dressed in giant foam costumes for no apparent reason. It's a lot like that Simpsons episode. All the time I was away I thought how much better British TV was, with great shows like the Office and documentaries and so many classic comedies. However, when I got back last Autumn I was really bothered by almost everything I saw. I hadn't realised how much living overseas had changed me, and I suddenly saw my home country with a fresh perspective. I noticed how much fear, paranoia and insecurity is fostered by TV. Fear that if you don't buy this, or watch this or look this this then you will never be as happy as the shiny impersonations of reality that are held up as something to be desired. I like this Bill Hicks quote - "Watch 'Headline News' for an hour. It's the most depressing thing you'll ever do: war, famine, death, AIDS, homeless, depression, recession, drought, flood, pit bull, war, famine, death, AIDS. Then you look out your window, and it's like, where's all this stuff happening?".

I now find that I can't watch more than 5 minutes of TV without getting too annoyed by what I'm seeing or thinking of something better I could be doing. I'm currently living at home and it bothers me how much time my family waste in front of the TV when they could be doing just about anything. They don't seem to understand why I don't want to spend my evenings glued to the set which sometimes leads to friction. I am moving out soon and I am not going to buy a TV set. I know for sure that when I'm older and look back on my life, I'm not going to wish that I had watched more television.

cheers again for the great site.

all the best,


Daniel Bradley
Japanese to English Translator

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