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Week of -2 January 2009


Latest Update: Monday, -2 January 2009 08:51 -0500

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Monday, -2 January 2009
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08:51 - I'm starting the New Year a bit early because the calendar stubbornly refused to cooperate with my site structure. I proposed an easy fix for the problem eight years ago, but no one listened.

With the New Year comes various computer housekeeping duties, making a new archive set and so on. While I was doing that, I decided to see how much television Barbara and I watch. Nearly all of our viewing is of DVDs, with perhaps a few minutes a day of checking the local news channel for the weather and so on. Barbara sometimes watches a golf match or a NASCAR race on weekends. But the bulk of our viewing is DVDs.

Since I joined Netflix in July 2005, we've watched a grand total of 698 DVDs, most from Netflix but many borrowed from friends or the library. So, assuming each DVD has 2 hours of content (which is a pretty reasonable assumption for the kind of DVDs we view; many have less), that means we've watched 1,396 hours of video in about 41 months, about 34 hours a month or about 1:07 per day. Add in incidental viewing time, and we're probably in the 1:15/day to 1:30/day range. Obviously that's a small fraction of the average, but it may decline even further.

The problem is that we're running out of things to watch. We're mining older stuff now. For example, we just finished watching 26 episodes of The Pallisers, from 1974 (at an average of 108 minutes/disc). It was excellent, by the way, and probably would be a lot better known were it not for the fact that it ran concurrently with Upstairs, Downstairs and had only about a third the number of episodes. But there just aren't that many top-notch older productions remaining that we haven't seen. Fortunately, some stuff worth watching is still being made. Once they're available, for example, we'll rent series two of Californication, series four and five of Weeds, series two of The Tudors, series 137 of Poirot, and so on. But they're not making good stuff fast enough to sustain us at 1:07/day.

Paul and Mary have recommended Bones. Barbara wanted to watch that, primarily because she likes David Boreanaz, but after watching the first ten minutes of the first episode I concluded that the series was so inferior to the books, all of which I've read, that it would be painful to watch. And the books themselves are not absolutely top-drawer, come to that. But perhaps I'll reconsider. I don't mind watching some stuff that Barbara likes better than I do, although I draw the line at any more Brideshead Revisited. We watched all 18,000 episodes of the 1981 version, although it seemed like more to me. Barbara wanted me to rent the new Emma Thompson version. Now, I would watch Emma Thompson reading the phone book, but I have to draw the line here. I'll rent it if Barbara really wants it, but I'll arrange to be elsewhere when she watches it.



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Tuesday, -1 January 2009
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Wednesday, 0 January 2009
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Thursday, 1 January 2009
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Friday, 2 January 2009
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Saturday, 3 January 2009
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Sunday, 4 January 2009
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