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No TV is good!

Last Sunday, we sold our TV and VCR. I can already feel the cloud lifting. Quick notes about three books I read.

My wife and I have now completed one full week without TV. It doesn’t surprise us that we don’t miss it one bit, considering our sentiments towards the idiot box. What has surprised me is that my thinking has become much more clearer and my eyes are much more relaxed. By American standards, I suppose we watch very little TV. About 1.5 hours per day.

I am very grateful that my parents didn’t have TV till I turned 15. Reading used to be my entertainment. Unlike TV, reading stimulates visualization and curiosity, which I think is essential for a child’s development.

Meanwhile, I got three books from the library.

1. “Tricky Business”; by Dave Barry
  • Slightly long.
  • Terrific humour.
  • A plot. If you can call it a plot - hey, this is Dave Barry.
  • From about page 80 to page 160, it gets a bit dragging.
2. “Big Trouble”; by Dave Barry
  • Dave Barry’s first novel.
  • Far far better than his second one, the one mentioned above.
  • Fantastic storyline.
  • Fast paced.
  • Pretty good portrayal of post 9/11 America.
3. “The Namesake”; by Jhumpa Lahiri

We are seriously considering not to buy another TV. News, as reported by the main newspaper in the region is not any better. I still long for the quiet evenings in my village when we used sit near our old transistor radio during BBC world service and cricket commentary.

Books and radio make you lively. Makes you think. Makes you imagine. Makes you debate with your fellow human beings.

TV makes you numb. Makes you accept most things without raising curiosity about why/how.

I am not saying that all TV programmes are bad. There are few good ones. But extremely few that make people think. Unlike a book, which you read at your own pace, TV’s strength is that it leads you. This, I feel is precisely what is bad about spending too much time in front of the TV.

Referrer: Tony Bowden.

  1. Babu, I have tried this many times and no luck. I can go without TV for few days, then you switch it on once and you get hooked again.

    I would not give up my TV. There are many programs on History Channel and CSpan which I watch regularly. Also being a movie buff, I need to watch those. But getting rid of Cable, maybe a good first step for me.

    Posted by: JK on December 28, 2003 11:40 AM
  2. JK, yes, getting rid of cable might be good! I have gone for 5 years without cable now. Still, the 8 out of 9 channels available without cable were all horrible. The only one worth watching was PBS/Weta and the re-runs of old British comedies. The only US show I found worth watching is Seinfeld.

    Posted by: Babu on December 31, 2003 06:04 PM
  3. I just called today to get rid of the cable! I know it's a good thing, but why am I feeling a loss? I don't even watch it that much, and think most of what is on is garbage! I have 2 children 8 and 10, the 8 yr old has the tv on constantly and is doing not as well as expected in school that was the motivation for getting rid of it. I need encouragement!!

    Posted by: bonharv on February 25, 2004 08:30 PM
  4. One more smart-victim from Singapore!
    I too got same kind of letter on 1 Mar 04 and it was a suprise, then I had a feeling that it is scam as I never did buy any lottery. The name on the envelope had mistakes but the address was correct. The letter was from one Don. John Carlos Gomez and signed by him as the Promotions Director of El Gordo La Primitiva Spanish Lottery S. L. Plaza Colon, Planta 2 Madrid, Espana and dated 20 Feb 04.

    I decided to check this out. After 2 days of communications I sent them a set of fictitious personal particulars and a fictitious bank name and accout number, they returned to confirm my win.

    I was asked to pay EURos 850.15 cents as Insurance premium to release the so called winning payment, latest by 5 Mar 04. But why the hurry?

    I'm now going to take the group for a ride and make them spend money instead. I have sent the letters and correspondence to the Spanish Embassy for their necessary attention.

    For new victims, you can go to to find out more about the actual El Gordo lottery and how the system works.


    Posted by: JJ Simon on March 4, 2004 10:09 AM
  5. I just received a letter from the same guy as JJ Simon and thanks to Babu and Simon (and many many more people out there) who have contributed to this site and made their efforts to inform people of such crazy idiots out there, who certainly think the whole world is foolish! But just to make all aware, the great guy "Don John Carlos Gomez" has figured out another way whereby he doesnt ask for the bank details any longer (atleast not on the form). Instead, he is willing to send the "winnings" by certified cheque. Well, the next step, is the details of the transfer process (as mentioned in the letter and therefore, the "very important" request for the fax number)once they receive the completed form and photocopy of an identity at LIONBELL SECURITY AGENCY S.L., MALAGA.
    If anyone is interested in verifying this further, please write to me and I shall be willing to part with the phone number, fax number, etc. If the Spanish Embassy needs more details to catch these "smart asses" - please feel free to contact me. Anything to help this world get rid of scoundrels - as it is there is enough stress worldwide. We certainly dont need more!!!

    Posted by: Renuka Arora Bhagat on April 19, 2004 08:10 PM
  6. I received the letter from Banco Santander first( named Don. Antonio Christopher-Foriegn transfer manager), they told me that i just won third prize by a Lottery company, it's worth EU420,500, wow... that a lot of money for me, because i'm Malaysian, if the amount convert to Malaysia ringgit is Rm1,682,000.00. But at the last, they want me to bank in the bank commssion,
    it's about EU1682.00 to a personal name account, so that mean they want my commission first and they sent "the money" to me.. i'm confuse so i check this web 'LionBell security agency s.l' then i find a lot of thing..

    Posted by: Ben on April 23, 2004 08:24 AM
  7. I got the same scam letter in my mailbox adressed to my wife....Now that sets me thinkig....How the HELL did those bastards get my wife's name and my address?

    Posted by: Khaos on May 4, 2004 09:52 PM
  8. I too got the Letter on 14th May. I called up the phone number mentioned in the LIONBELL SECURITY SERVICE form, next day. They told me to fax all the details as due to security reasons, they won't tell anything over the phone!!!! I had a doubt, as I didn;t participate in any lucky draw or bought any lottery. I searched in google and found this site. Thanks a lot. :) How these fellows know my name (was incorrect) and my address as I shifted to the new house 1 month back & didn't participated in any contest!!!!

    Thanks to all guys :)

    Posted by: Prem on May 17, 2004 04:19 PM
  9. lucky to me to find this site, thanks guys, im malaysian and i got the same letter as many people talking in this site. the mail was sent to my father name that already passed away for 11 years!! to informed that he won third prize thats worth EU230,500.05 . the name was entered by Sandy Coast Marketing Co. and they want us to confirm by fax his details to Lionbell Security Agency S.L.(fax #34-655-305-639. i wonder how Don John Carlos Gomes and his creep could get my father name?.

    Posted by: hairudin on May 20, 2004 10:07 AM
  10. Just to report that I received the El Gordo scam letter
    yesterday. I'm supposedly richer by 280,500 euros!

    It remains a puzzle how they obtained my address. It
    is not the one my overseas bank and credit card company
    use (tip: whenever you give a company your name and
    address, give everyone a slightly different version.
    Then you know who cheated you). That pretty much leaves
    the telco as the source.

    Posted by: Robert on May 21, 2004 07:22 AM
  11. Why are people writing about scam letters here? This page is about TV!

    Posted by: Babu on May 21, 2004 09:17 AM
  12. Is TV nowadays better than the one our parents used to know? there are some points that need to be taken into account to get an answer to this question.

    Firstly, the main reason why TV is successful is that it is affordable to the majority of citizens. Moreover, not only does TV help many people not to feel alone, but also it entertains them. In fact, TV brings the world into our living room, just like the internet. Then, why isn't it as popular as TV? the answer is simple: the latter requires little or no effort to watch.

    In my opinion, everyone against TV should ask themselves why it is seen by every single person around the world.

    Posted by: FCE GROUP on May 25, 2004 12:55 AM
  13. Just To report that i received the EL Gordo scam letter yesterday.
    What should i do?


    Posted by: Mani on June 6, 2004 12:20 PM
  14. Hi, I just received the El Gordo scam leter today.
    By the way Lionbell Security Agency S.L.has changed their fax number the new one is (fax #34-645-309-834. )

    Posted by: sins on June 9, 2004 12:06 AM
  15. I also have received the Winning scam letter from Lionbell security ageency today. Those people have again changed there fax number. Guys beware of such spam mails, its important to keep urself out of such spammers. Thanks to vs babu for this wonderful act of making us alert through this website.

    Posted by: mohit gupta on June 16, 2004 01:12 PM