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October 9, 2015

What Jackie is thankful for

by Jackie Schnoop, posted Nov 25th 2009 6:06PM
Oh, the humanity! Les Nessman reports on the turkey dropYes, it's that time of year once again. It's Thanksgiving -- yay, food! With the times such as they are, I'll admit to being more thankful on a regular basis during this year than many years gone by. I have a job (a few jobs actually), a roof over my head, money for food and bills, good friends, family, a bionic knee so I can be a bit like The Six Million Dollar Man, and so much more.

But, since this is about television, I'm going to focus on what I'm thankful for in television and TV-related kind of things. We might share some items on the list, we might not. While the times might not be great for financial dealings, it's a wondrous time for television geeks like you and me. Or, maybe it's just me. So, exactly what am I thankful for? Read on.

The remote control

Yes, it seems like such a simple thing. I'm old enough to recall not having a remote control for the television. Then there were the days when the cable company issued a remote with a huge unforgiving cable attached to the television. And, thanks to the nifty device, channel surfing -- the ultimate couch pursuit -- was born.

I researched a bit for this smidgen of thankfulness. Did you know that the original remote control was invented back in 1898 by Nikola Testa? It was created to control vehicles. In 1956 Zenith created the first remote control for television. Maybe rich people had them in 1956, I don't know. But I know my first remote days were about the time MTV made its debut with music television. Today everything runs on remote controls and we take them for granted. Not me, nuh-uh. I'm thankful for the remote control which has so enriched my television viewing. You go, remote control!


Yeah, I know a lot of folks are including Hulu on their lists. What I'm thankful for on Hulu are the plethora of older shows. Did you know that Hulu has the entire Hill Street Blues series available? Plus, there are gems like this:

We're talking one of the best Thanksgiving sitcom episodes in the history of television here. The "Turkeys Away" episode of WKRP in Cincinnati aired decades ago, but it's still a hoot to watch. Such classic lines like "As God is my witness, I thought turkeys could fly" as well as Les Nessman's reactions at the turkey drop location, this episode is priceless.Thank you, Hulu.

Reality television in general

Oh, I think I can hear some groans now from the crowd. "But, but ... this post is labeled 'reality-free'!" But hear me out. As a lifelong lover of stories, both reading and watching them, the reality television genre has addressed yet another quirk in my psyche. You see, I'm an observer. I'm one of those folks who loves to sit and people-watch in cities and public places. If nothing else, reality television has given us a peek into the lives of people, albeit many of them we really might not want to know.

From Cops to talent contests to Survivor, I enjoy watching how other people react to different situations. I'm not too keen on the entire genre, but I have reality mainstays in my television viewing. And I'm thankful that I do. I'm also thankful I'm not a contestant on a reality show so I can mock them without mercy.

Cash Cab

I like trivia. But sometimes Jeopardy makes me feel dumb. I'll go on a streak where I know all of the answers, then they go all difficult on me. Enter Cash Cab on the Discovery Channel. As I watch, I honestly know most of the answers, something which proves that I might actually be at least a quasi-intelligent person and that dementia hasn't set in yet. Plus, since I'm local to the city, it's neat to see familiar sights. I can also dream that one day the Cash Cab will pick me up even though I'm more of a subway person. Maybe I can be the street shout-out. I can still dream, eh? Thank you, Cash Cab.

Craig Ferguson's show openings

I'm a die-hard David Letterman fan and stay up much later than I should in my dedication to Worldwide Pants. If not for the pesky day job, I'd stay up longer and watch The Late, Late Show with Craig Ferguson on a regular basis. Nonetheless, I've become addicted to at least catching Craig's openings. I crack up at his puppets and the lip-synch routines with his staff. Here's what I'm talking about:

Creative genius? Just plain silly? Whatever! I'm thankful for Craig's show openings.

The internet, TV Squad, and YOU

The internet just keeps making a television fan even more of a fan. With network websites offering shows online, Hulu, YouTube clips ... the internet has enriched our passion. Not only can we watch shows, but we can interact with others about them. Of course, I'm thankful for the many shows I watch on a regular basis, most of which I haven't gone into here. Suffice it to say, I'm thankful for the entertainment value of the television medium: news, scripted stories, sitcoms, reality shows, variety, and Sunday Morning on CBS. And I'm thankful that TV Squad and you are a part of my life. It gives me warm fuzzies and all.

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Joyce N.

Since I'm a diehard fan of several reality shows, I'm a diehard fan of yours, Jackie. I watch them for pretty much the same reasons that you mentioned. Commenting with other people here and on your blog has made it even more enjoyable.

I particularly love your wit, your take on the shows we discuss, your pix and clips. I've been reading every word you've written about reality shows for about four years now and will continue to do so for, hopefully, many more.

Happy Thanksgiving!

November 25 2009 at 9:47 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

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