Post By Mad Dad: Explaining to People Why I Don’t Have Cable

“Let’s see what the new-fangled picture box has on.” – Mad Dad

Explaining to people why I don’t have cable

If I knew not having cable television would cause me such grief, I’d probably just go ahead and subscribe … or lie.

Lately, nothing has caused more heads to turn or jaws to drop than admitting that I don’t know who Honey Boo Boo is and after YouTubing Honey Boo Boo I don’t understand why I’m not higher on the human food chain. This monster is abhorrent and makes my body wretch with disgust!

Yet, I’m the idiot who doesn’t have cable.

I’m not anti-cable. In fact, not having cable is a bit of a preventative measure. I’m also not anti-TV although I do think a large chunk of it is terrible (I realize how contradictory that sounds).

What I mean is that I don’t care that you know who Honey Boo Boo and I don’t care if you watch these cable television shows. No doubt if I had cable, I’d have a grand ol’ time and then I’d go crazy because a majority of it is mindless drivel. A sort of crack cocaine for television: It’s cheap and it gets you real high.

What I don’t like is having to explain to people why I don’t have cable television as if I’d admitted to not breathing in oxygen or admitted to urinating magma.

Friends, I get. It’s conversation. Strangers, I don’t get.

Recently, AT&T informed us that we were getting U-verse at our house. No, it wasn’t a gift. It was an ultimatum. Meaning, we’re getting rid of your current high-speed DSL and you can either switch to U-verse or no longer have access to a wireless signal. Thanks AT&T!

No problem. It’ll be faster, cheaper for the first year and all will be good. Except for the BS I get from the friendly customer service agents.

“Do you have cable with AT&T?”


“Would you like to switch over and bundle …”

“No. I actually don’t have cable.”

“What do you mean?”

“I don’t have cable TV. We watch over-the-air television.”

“Oh,” she coos as if I just stated my mother died in 9/11. “Umm, why not?”

“We really don’t need it. We don’t watch enough TV to need it.”

“Well, I couldn’t live without cable TV. I watch it all the time!”

That was an actual conversation. Having had to call back days later, another agent gave me a series of similar quizzical queries, although not nearly as patronizing.

Generally, I don’t know why I need to explain myself. I realize I’m missing out on some really good shows. I’m not stupid. I also know I’m not blowing hours of my life watching a “reality” show about a pawn shop or a horrid little child beauty contestant, who might be the effin’ antichrist.

I choose to do what Nancy Reagan did: Just say no.

-Mad Dad


Post By Mad Dad: Explaining to People Why I Don’t Have Cable — 2 Comments

  1. I get that its a giant money suck, and worse than that, its a giant time suck. So tell me, has it allowed you to do anything useful/life affirming/etc or do you just find yourself frittering away your time at something equally useless?

  2. I too have been questioned of my sanity because I do NOT have nor do I WANT cable television. We have Comcast internet, no cable, no wireless and our children’s television does not have the antenna hooked up to it. If they want to watch plain old, network television, they have to watch it with us. I have found much more useful things than cable…such as the money I save by not shelling out $50+ a month, not sitting my ass on the couch because I get sucked into some dumb show, spending time with my family, spending time outside, working on our vegetable garden, actual conversation and spending time playing board games, cards and football outside with the kids. I grew up in a television family and my parents LOVE their DirectTV….but me, we are doing much better in my house without it.

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