Archive for December, 2014

What if you had no television?

Can you imagine living without television? It’s such a part of our lives that doing without would mean a major lifestyle change. I know, because I recently went two months without television.

Yeah, between a couple of house moves, issues having cable installed, and a longer-than-expected search for a new flat screen, I found myself looking for other ways to spend my free time.

Some of my revelations:

No news is not good news
While there are a few shows I look forward to and missed, lack of news was the biggest gap created by going TV-less. Despite reading the daily paper, I felt out-of-the-loop and disconnected from the goings on around the globe, as well as pop culture news. I missed the morning routine of breakfast and Today.

Reading failed to fill the gap
I was certain that going without television would lead to more reading. It didn’t, and I’m not sure why. Perhaps it was the disruption in my routine of watching a little television, then heading to bed to read.

Gather no moss
Perhaps the most interesting reaction was that I found myself looking for excuses to get out of the house. To avert boredom, I took lots of walks around town, frequently drove home via a longer route, and spent more time at the gym.

Any port in a storm
Confession: on a couple of occasions, while visiting family, I caught myself peeking at the television for things that would ordinarily be off my radar. Detroit Lions football comes to mind.

Radio stepped in to fill a big part of the television void. Rock, country, sports — if I was awake, the radio was generally on, to the point where I grew tired of it.

Productivity lapse
Oddly, I found myself feeling unproductive when I was home with nothing to do (i.e. with no television to watch). I did paint some walls and trim, but it wasn’t the same. It’s amazing how much television fills the gaps in our lives.

Your turn. What would you do with no television?


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Pitcher’s new contract offers career lesson

Red Sox fans everywhere are kicking dirt because the team failed to lure much-coveted pitcher Jon Lester back to Beantown. The lefty was traded from the Sox to Oakland late in the year, but became a free agent after the season, able to sign with the team of his choice.

Despite optimistic predictions that he’d return to Boston, Lester agreed to a $155 million, six-year contract with the Chicago Cubs.

As I read the news, I recalled a recent article about changing jobs. It offered advice on what to do if you have another job offer, but your current employer ponies up more compensation to keep you.

The author contends that if your current employer wants to keep you, and sees value in your work, he/she should have compensated you fairly without the threat of a departure. The author argued that you should walk away. Just like Jon Lester did.

Many feel Lester’s decision was due to a low offer that came from the Sox in the spring  for $70 million over four years. Yeah, hardly chump change, but you could argue that the much larger offers Boston made in the fall couldn’t undo the damage of that lowball offer in March.

Your thoughts? Do you stay or walk away if your current employer offers a raise to keep you from jumping ship?

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