Lance is one of my new friends in Raleigh. We’ve seen each other at church each weekend, eaten a handful of meals, and dabbled in the local music scene together. So far, I think a lot of Lance. And then he dropped, the big one on me.

They don’t own a TV. Haven’t for 12 or 13 years now.

Wow. I was blown away.

The reason for ditching the box? There wasn’t much worth watching. They were busy and didn’t have time for it anyway. Over a decade later, they don’t miss it. They aren’t completely out of touch either. Lance reads the news every day online, they watch movies on the laptop, they are even fairly conversant about sports and tv shows. Lance told me that you’d be surprised how pervasive tv is (even as one hummed on nearby in the restaurant we were eating at).

How do people react when they hear about his abstinence? They usually talk about their own watching habits. Two refrains are most common:
1. I don’t really watch that much tv.
2. We need it for sports.
He usually just says ok and lets the conversation continue.

Don’t get me wrong. Lance isn’t an activist about this. He doesn’t think tv is evil and isn’t trying to convince anyone. He’s simply living out his choice. Makes me like him even better.

Every year Lance attends a conference for work and stays in a nice hotel complete with a nice tv. Does he watch it? Yes- for about an hour. Then he thinks- oh yeah, same old stuff- and clicks it off.

Am I giving up my tv? Probably not. Although I could stand to unplug more. By the way, Lance’s biggest curiosity about people who watch tv is “How do they find time to get anything done- like reading?”. “We don’t”, I told him with a smile.

How about you? Ever thought about getting rid of your tv? How long do you think you could go without it?