altered reality

When I was growing up, reality shows weren’t the craze they are now.  We lived in the country, which meant no cable. For YEARS, we had 3 stations…ABC, NBC, & CBS.  We did get to watch PBS at my grandmother’s every afternoon after getting off the school bus, but just a quarter mile up the road at my house? No PBS.

So, reality television was pretty much Sesame Street. Oh, and the Cosby Show.

But then after I went to college, it seems the reality show craze really set in.  For me it started with The Real World.  Then Road Rules.  Then Temptation Island.

This was realityUh-oh.  In realityland, 20 year olds were cool as hell, even with whacked out hair. Even if they were named Puck. Even if they swapped bed buddies from week to week after hot-tub fiascos.  My reality did not compare.  I would think – Obviously, I am FAT. And I have too many sexual morals. And I have a job. And I don’t have an RV. Life SUCKS.

So, I went on a diet. And I played a lot of Spin The Bottle.  And I went camping.  Hell, I even kissed a girl.

That was a really long weekend.

Luckily, now America is beyond bored and every other television show is a “reality show.”  Soap operas used to rule the airwaves, but now there are only a couple left.  And poor Marlena has probably used up at least 8 of her 9 lives if I had to guess.  Poor lady. If it’s not Stefano it’s the Devil.  I stopped watching in 1993 when she was possessed and started levitating.  Of course, they kept tricking her into believing her husband wasn’t her husband even though he looked like him, or her husband looked like a stranger or the guy who so obviously used to be the bartender in town. She just rolls with the punches.

But back to reality shows.  Cake Boss, Ace of Cakes, Jon & Kate, Those Little People..everyone has their own show.  They are all okay. But you know what feels good?

Watching Hoarders and The Biggest Loser.

If your husband gives you grief about the pile of laundry growing out of the basket, or complains about the 5 dishes in the sink? Plop his ass down in front of a Hoarders marathon.  You can be all –“See honey? At least a GOAT didn’t eat off the side of our house.  At least I don’t sleep on a portable potty chair that I tie myself in to every night in the middle of the kitchen because there is not one other square foot to sit down in this entire abode.  At least our bathroom floor hasn’t been eaten away by a 3 inch layer of feces.  See how good you have it?”

And then? Go make yourself a cheesecake in your clean kitchen. Eat it in front of the TV, and be sure to turn on The Biggest Loser.  Nothing like eating 2900 calories as you watch 400 pounders huff and puff on the treadmill while Jillian Michaels screams at them. She can’t even SEE you! Go on, eat up!  Sure, you’ll be all “I can’t believe I am eating cheesecake and watching the Biggest Loser!” But heck, we all do it.  Some of us are just willing to admit it. 

Not me, of course, but some of us. I wouldn’t consider such a thing. I’m a Cosby.

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