Sunday, March 26, 2006


TV or not TV

It's a quarter to seven on Sunday morning, and we've been up for about an hour now. I've read the best bits out of the Sunday paper and had a cup of coffee. It's an ordinary Sunday morning in most respects, except...

...the TV is off. Every single morning, whatever parent is on call (we take turns on the weekend, and it's Beloved during the week while I get ready for work) comes downstairs, makes a cup of chocolate milk and a little bowl of raisins and dried cereal for each boy to snack on, and turns on the TV.

Sadly, many mornings we are awake even before TVO (the Ontario version of PBS, with commercial-free kids programming) starts its broadcast day, so usually the boys pick from among their collection of DVDs and video tapes. We have a lot, from Thomas the Tank Engine to Blues Clues to Pingu to Baby Einstein. And the TV will be on from the time the first child wakes up until breakfast, and sometimes beyond. The TV often gets left on for hours as background noise, especially on the mornings Beloved is in charge. I am conflicted on the TV issue, but Beloved is not.

And yet this morning, we have been up for more than an hour, and the boys have not yet asked me to turn it on. These boys, creatures of habit to an even greater degree than their routine-obsessed mother, have yet to notice the absence of the noise from the corner.

You know what the really weird part is? They're playing nicely - together. That alone is remarkable. Could it be coincidence?

I'm not sure if I have the intestinal fortitude to draw any battle lines in the house on when the idiot box can be on and when it must be turned off, especially if the lion's share of maintenance will fall on Beloved's shoulders, when Beloved doesn't buy in to the theory that there is such a thing as too much TV.

Well, there you go. We've been up for about 80 minutes, and as I type Tristan is requesting Mighty Machines. I'm not sure whether I want to take a stand on this one or not...