Friday, February 1, 2008

My pre-Lent Carnival

According to custom, the weeklong festivities before Ash Wednesday are called "carnival" time because, in Latin, carne levarium means removal of meat. For me it has meant "removal of brains."

I have practically lost my mind to and certainly fried my brains with DVDs and viewing stuff online via Netflix,,, and Yes, there's a reason I haven't owned a television or subscribed to cable service for nearly a decade. Periodic binges help me remember this.

In my own defense, I'll note that I did mix a few morsels of spiritual nutrition in with the brain candy. Among them: Journey to the Heart: Henri Nouwen, a documentary about...Henri Nouwen, and Ushpizin, a delightfully quirky Israeli flick about the mitzvah of welcoming strangers during Succot. Absolutely not among them: Thérèse, a movie so jaw-droppingly awful that I ejected the DVD after ten excruciatingly long minutes of watching on screen drivel.

Thanks to the writer's strike, I've been able to wean myself away from watching the prime time soap operas "Brothers & Sisters" and "Grey's Anatomy." Still, last night I was powerless over checking I promptly got sucked right back into two hours of "Lost," which I'd successfully quit at the end of its way-too-weird second season. This, mind you, was after watching thirty minutes of "In Treatment" on HBO.

"In Treatment," aired for not even a full analytic hour, features a different client every night. I forget for how many weeks this program is scheduled. Doesn't matter. I'm determined to stop watching after tonight. In tonight's episode, the psychiatrist (protagonist) is supposed to have a session with his own therapist. Sure hope he talks about bungling several sessions this past week. These would be the sessions during which I found myself muttering, "get clinical supervision."

Okay, so maybe I will tune in next week to see if he has learned anything -- but only on Monday and Tuesday. Lent begins Wednesday. Guess what I'll be renouncing.


  1. Hi Meredith,
    Ahhhh. Those bad, bad binges. We don't have cable either, but I sure am a sucker for downloading and watching Grey's Anatomy and Brothers & Sisters (bring the tears!). Lost too. I'm sure I'll get online and watch it before I do anything else tonight. *Sigh* TV.

  2. Oooh I didn't know "In Treatment" was available online!!

    Yes. Binges. Bad.

    Have you seen anything on Joost? Great winter sports coverage...but only clips sometimes. Not the full show. Not as bad....

  3. HBO has it available in all sorts of formats and that, plus the nightly dose, is the only interesting thing about it. Bob Newhart was a *much* better therapist, as was Judd Hirsch!

  4. How are you able to write such wonderful and witty post without your brain turning to mush from the boobtube.

  5. Thnx for the compliment. This is my brain...this is my brain on boobtube. I'm prolly less witty when I stop watching. Lets see what happens during Lent.


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