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Thoughts About Breaking UpJanuary 14, 2010

Oh, Juno. Now you've done it.

I've been thinking about breaking up for a while now. And your post has really gone and done it, I think.

(Martha Flynn, you shouldn't read this. You're not ready.)

It's time to get rid of cable.

Now, I'm not going to go whole hog, like she did. She's actually giving her TV to Michelle (which was a pretty funny Twitter exhange to witness in real time, actually), and I still have plans to watch shows sometimes, things on Hulu, movies on Amazon and iTunes. But it's just kind of ridiculous to have the whole computer system that Lala set up (an Apple Mini, so we have a hub, right there, at the TV), and not utilize it the right way.

I don't watch much TV. Maybe five hours a week, which is even less than Lala does. But I really, really, really enjoy those five hours (even though I'm famous for pausing the show and walking away eleventy-billion times during every show to do something Very Important That I've Just Remembered Needs Doing). That's so not worth the cost of cable.

I could be hanging out with family more. Reading more. Watching more movies.

It's time. (I'm SO NOT THINKING about the fact that Big Love just started. Can you get that on iTunes?)

What do you think?

Comments

Do it! We got rid of cable when we moved (over 2 years ago now), and find that we just watch TV shows on netflix, or read, or play with the puppy... and that's a big chunk of change to put in the savings account every month!

We have no cable. Instead, we have a BluRay, and download what we want directly from Netflix. (you can get YouTube and other stuff too.) Great reception, choice and value. Plus we can watch what we want, when we want. I know that sounds like an ad, but it is really wonderful.

I have not had cable since the 70's and I don't think I have missed much. Also, many shows are available online or via Netflx. Money spent on cable is a waste. As an alternative, I like to listen to books-on-CD/tape while knitting. Try it - you'll like it!

Do it! My hub and I don't have cable, and our tv is in the very cold and inhospitable basement - so we watch very little, and don't really miss it. Most of what we watched a person can get online, or at the very least, later on dvd (and we also end up surfing the web more... so I suppose total screen time is not as reduced as you'd think). Besides, if you hate it you can always sign back up! :)

great idea - TV is a great big time suck. I was down to just the basics networks and PBS for years and loved it - you'll probably feel liberated once you get through the withdrawal phase!

We got rid of cable last week - keeping the TV for movies and Netflix Watch Instantly. I thought it would be hard at first but it really wasn't. I'm getting more done and getting more sleep! Plus we're saving over $100/month which isn't exactly trivial for us. All plusses - we're glad we did it!

I don't know. I watch mostly network, but I do like some of the shows on other "extra" stations. But I have a spouse who couldn't do without baseball--lot's of baseball!

My husband and I love tv, but we got rid of our cable a year ago when we moved. We have regular over the air signals, a roku box for netflix, hulu via the ps3. I only miss a few channels--discovery and the history channel, the food network, bravo and if the day ever comes that I can pay for just those four channels, then I'll have cable again, but likely not before.

Go for it! We've been cable-free for over 6 years and are still loving it. We watch movies and TV series on the dvd player and that's worked really well for us. It's a big money-saver and we see only what we really want to see.

Congratulations! In my case, TV broke up with me (in other words, it just plain broke) and I still haven't bothered to replace it. I miss Netflix, but I know if I got a TV I wouldn't be able to resist plugging the cable back in.

(High speed internet is only available through cable where I live, so the cable TV is technically still live.)

Rachel--I broke up with my tv and dvr-digital-cable madness in February. I don't miss it. Netflix is a godsend--for shows and whatnot. I recently got a Roku player, which was $99 well spent. I am a wee bit bummed about the upcoming Olympics--since there is no (*cough*) legal way to watch them online. In short though: I read more books, listen to more podcasts, and go to bed at a more reasonable hour. Win all around.

Dump it! Even PBS is online! The hardest part - we found - was turning down the nice cable guys who routinely stopped by to try and sign us up. No thanks, we really and truly don't want it. No, we are not insane. Nor are we serial killers. And no, we don't need to keep up with our neighbors.

Yow! I think you can do it-and then plan a fab trip with all that money you saved(Italy? Paris?). I don't watch t.v. much either-it literally isn't on during the week ONCE. Netflix is the best! Especially if you spring for the Blu Ray player with internet connection and stream movies or series.

Do it! Totally worth it. We get what we want from Netflix, both DVDs in the mail and Instant Netflix. The best part? No commercials!

You'll be glad you did. Cable is such a waste of money. I get the shows I want to see (right now, Dexter and Big Love) on Netflix. Yeah, I have to wait a few months after the season ends, so I'm behind the curve, but so what?

In the Brooklyn house we still had two channels of network. Here, nothing but Netflix and dvds. We don't miss TV at all.

You know, a few years ago I was living in a place that couldn't get cable and I did great. Netflix certainly saved my life and I watched the most interesting TV series and enjoyed them a lot more because I could watch the whole thing without much interruption. I'll bet you can rent Big Love or watch it online if you want. Go for it!

Oh, and by the way, watching older TV series is a lot of fun too! Like Upstairs Downstairs! Now I understand all the references!

It is moving higher and higher on my To-Do list! I just don't watch the way I used to.

Out of monetary necessity I cut off my cable about a year ago. I realized all I was watching was jeopardy and reruns of The Simpsons and Mash. I thought - why am I paying $75 a month for that? So poof it's gone. I have my DVD player and watch movies when I'm knitting. I plan to get the simpsons on DVD. and I can honestly say, I don't miss cable and the $75 is much better spent now

I don't think I'd get rid of the TV, but we've been talking about dumping cable, or at least everything but the basic channels so we can get the news. We mostly watch series we really like from Netflix. Who cares if it's last season?

The thing is... I haven't had TV reception in over 5 years now. For exactly the kind of reasons you list: the shows that interest me are so few that it's not worth the exhorbitant cost. And I don't miss it... not One. Single. Bit!

But... we may be getting it again because where we live the ONLY way to get internet is to have cable. And we want home conectivity.
Damn.

Nope. You can only get Big Love on DVD once the season is over. Same for all HBO shows. Since HBO is a subscription service, they don't want to give you a non-subscription way of purchasing.

So say we all!
I've been without cable for almost 5 years now, and will never go back. :)

We have a Mac mini as our hub, too.. and I'm in the process of copying all our VHS and DVD movies over to a hard drive on my system which we can then watch on the HD TV through the network. I do love living with someone who knows how to hook all that stuff up. :) There's something oddly satisfying about watching a terabyte drive slowly filling up with my movies. Unfortunately, the bf likes his cable too much to give it up. I figure, though, since he's out working with the long commute every day I can't begrudge him any way he wants to spend his down time.

DO IT!! Carol and I got rid of television service probably 10 years ago, and it is the single best thing we did for our relationship. We have a TV set for Netflix, and we hardly even watch those. We talk to each other, read, just hang out... it's fantastic.

Seriously, if we have an hour free and want entertainment we can go to the backyard and watch the chickens, they are much more entertaining than TV. I'd buy you 3 baby chicks if you ditch cable. You'd just need to build a coop. Is that a good deal?

We don't have cable either. We still watch TV since we get NBC, PBS, and a staticky Fox through the giant antenna on our roof, but mostly we watch Netflix. When we go on road trips and stay in hotels or places with cable, we binge on House Hunters International for a few weeks, and the kids binge on Cartoon Network and Boomerang, and we are once again reminded how awesome it is that we don't have cable all the time. Although my youngest has discovered that she can get Tom and Jerry and Scooby-Doo on the computer.

Do it! Rip off that bandaid!

Go for it! I went all the way down to basic cable (12 bucks a month) and have not been sorry. I netflix, have a roku, and listen to books on tape.

Join Us!!! We've been cable free for many years, I don't think I have ever paid a cable bill. We do have internet and watch a crap load of Netflix, but watching a streaming program is so different from getting caught in the flow of random crappy programming (which i did all the time in college).

@Kathleen, we have cable internet but we don't get the television service, it's totally doable!

Girl, I just did it today.

We have not had cable in, ummm...huh, I guess we have never had cable! lol We do watch some network TV (via our antenna & a digital converter), and we bought a Roku for Christmas, and we play dvd's. Would be much much harder for me to dump my internet, though, which is a also a timesuck!

I haven't even had basic television in four years, and I don't miss it at all. Anything I want to watch I can find on the internet.

That's a lie. I do miss it when I'm awake at 4am and bored, but I generally find other things to do. And I still have my television with the DVD player and stuff.

I was about to feel guilty for my TV overconsumption--my big problem tonight is that CSI and Project Runway are both on at 8--but then I realized I have a 13-year out. My family's TV broke when I was 4 and we never replaced it. (I'm not counting the 3/4 of college when I didn't have one, either.)

It was good, though I missed out on years of cultural references.
I read a TON and did well in school.

Haven't had cable since I lived with my parents. I don't miss it. I'm a big fan of surfthechannel.com I don't care if the picture quality isn't great, since I knit and watch TV, so I'm not looking at the screen all the time (silly lace I have to watch to knit). And lots of shows are broadcast on line anyways! DO IT!

If you want to pull the plug, do it! You know they'll always take you back, they're that kind of partner ;) Good luck and enjoy!

I broke up with cable a little over a year ago and I don't miss it one bit (Ok, except maybe BBC America and the History channel).
We've got 1 media center PC for our downstairs tv, and a little shuttle thingy for upstairs.
Between Hulu, Netflix, and certain friends of ours with nefarious access to downloaded stuff, we watch more TV now than we did before, because its all what we WANT to watch, vs what just happens to be on.

I lived without cable for several years and didn't miss it. We have it now for my husband and kids, but I still don't really watch it and I wouldn't miss it if it went away again. Do it!

2 years cable free and we don't miss it. Too expensive and there's rarely anything worth watching anyway. Good for you!

I think this is wonderful. But then, I'm one of those unTV people who spends more time dusting the box than watching it. I do like Mad Men, though.

I haven't had cable (or access to regular television) since June 1998. We have a Netflix account and use that, but we control what comes into the house and when. The only time I've really missed it was Obama's inauguration.

We save more than fifty dollars per month not having cable.

I just upgraded to cable! I love msnbc and some of the DIY and food channels, A&E. I'm not watching more TV but when I do, it's something I like. Lots of people will tell you everything--new movies, every TV show, etc--is available for download on line. Maybe, but some is illegal, violating copyright and intellectual property. It surprises me that people who wouldn't steal a pencil in a store will steal a movie online. Good luck with your decision!

We dumped cable yrs ago and don't miss it one little bit. As a matter of fact, when we're someplace where commercial tv is on, the ad breaks drive everyone in my family insane. What a waste of time. How annoying to have all these things that we supposedly need (but don't, tyvm) shoved down our throats at increased volume. Skip all the schlub, pocket the cash, watch higher quality stuff by choice, without interruptions. Win-win.

Oh I would so like to do that. I watch very little TV as well, and what I do watch I can find online. I think the hubster would have a heart attack though. Probably about the way I would feel if someone asked me to give up the internet. *Shudder*

we ditched the tv over two years ago....i love it.
we saved cable money plus we talk to each other much more..the peace is amazing, the sounds here are now chicken, parakeet and cat sounds.. it's the BEST

I am *so* close to doing this as well. But what about Deadliest Catch? How will I find out how the boys are doing? I don't know if I can wait for iTunes....I loves me some crab fishermen and Discovery Channel...

I have not had commercial television for about 10 years. Can't imagine going back to it. Everything I want I can get on Netflix, and dont miss what I dont know about. Am I more productive? Well now I just sit and stare at a black TV screen alot! Addiction is a hell.....

Irony: I have cable TV, but--never hooked it up. The package combo I have is $25/mo for cable internet, only WITH basic cable. Why hook it up, though? I get great reception with a digital antenna.

OMG WHO ARE ALL THESE TV HATE MONGERS???

ok ok. i'm calmer now. i see what you need to do. sniffle. i'll keep up on tv for you.

Cable is way too expensive, and sometimes it tempts you into watching stuff that melts your brain. We watch all the good shows (Big Love, etc) on Netflix. You do have to wait a long time for them to come out on DVD, but you'll get used to it. You can do it.

Give it a try! I think you are in the perfect position to get rid of cable because you and your spouse don't watch a lot of TV. I know from reading your blog that you guys have a life. You read, play music, exercise, go on outings with your pets. You probably wouldn't miss easy access to TV as much as I would.

In my case, TV is the one thing that really draws our family together. I hear all these stories about how families spend more time together without TV, but it didn't work that way for us. There have been a few times that we've been without service due to cash flow problems. Our service is in a bundle, so we were without TV, internet, and phone at the same time. Everyone camped out in separate rooms and read books, except for my husband. He doesn't like to read so he would just go to bed at a ridiculously early hour like 7p. I shudder to think how eerily quiet this house would be if we had service shut off for longer than a week!

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