OK. I admit it. I have never actually watched "Being There". However, I am familiar enough with the movie to know that the simpleton main character says "I like to watch," and is refering to television.
While I don't watch that much television these days, I still enjoy spending a few hours a week indulging in that particular 'inactivity'. I'm not fool enough to try to justify my choices as having any redeeming value, or even being overly well written or well acted. I just like them. Every year, my choices get more and more limited. This year I'm watching "ER", "One Tree Hill", and (sometimes) a new show that's on after OTR, "Related".
While that is three measley hours a week, I also will flip about randomly and glom onto an in-progress movie a couple of times a week. In addition, I will purposefully sit down a few times a week to watch a DVD. About half the DVDs I watch are actually TV shows that I have purchased on DVD, either because I liked them so much that I can watch them again, or because I didn't catch them when they were originally on.
Here are some of the TV shows that I have acquired this year: "Once and Again: Season 2", "Battlestar Galactica" (new series), "Earth 2", "Firefly", and "Rosewell: Season 3". I am eagerly awaiting "Once and Again: Season 3" and "Alien Nation: The Complete Series". I may actually pick up Season 1 of "Lost", since I've become intrigued with all the hype around the show.
The bottom line is this: While I agree that watching television every night can be mind-numbing, I enjoy watching television on a somewhat regular basis. There was a point in my life where I watched TV for several hours every evening. I just can't do that any more. I have other interests. And, recently, I've really rediscovered the joys of both reading AND writing. However, I see no reason to give up television completely. But, with the advent of TiVo and television shows on DVD, I can enjoy my guilty little pleasures without having to put up with the commercials.
Take that Madison Avenue!