Yesterday was a historical day for me. I plugged an HDMI cable into my TV set for the first time in my life. Of course I used that cable before to hook up projectors and stuff, but never for my own TV set at home. That’s how far I went in trying to live under a rock. This minor event means more to me than I thought.
For years I’ve been resisting to have a TV at home. Because I knew if I had one, I’d spent a lot of time watching it. And then some day, a friend was going to throw away his old TV set as he bought a new one. The old one was fine - an impressive 22” Sony set-top flat panel. So I took it home. I had one good use case for it: watching football championships. Online streaming services go down under the peak load on such occasions.
Now we bought a gaming console. Not the the-one-you-think. No. A Nintendo Switch hybrid console. Hybrid because you can play on the go, just like a Game Boy or an iPad. But it can be docked and plugged into a TV set, which boosts it’s performance and allows for a more immersive experience. As much as one can immerse themselves in a 22” screen that is :) So while I’m still living under a rock, having an ancient TV set with no cable channels on it, I did use the HDMI for the way it was meant to be used.
Symbol Of Independence
This got me thinking. I was successful in being stubborn and resisted for 15 years since the HDMI standard was defined… I think it shows my priorities.
First, it shows how anti-consumption my attitude is. One of the first things you should get in a new home is a flat TV as-big-as-fits-the-door, stereo, Blue Ray player, a gaming console and a bunch of other stuff, right? So I didn’t.
Second, I did to shape my environment so that it supports the way I want to live: spend my time with my family, friends, read books, work on my photos. I don’t want to do what the mass media would prefer me to: sit in front of the TV in a state of hypnosis, consuming media.
Third, it’s an expression of independence. Of making it not faking it. Of putting the money where my mouth is. Which means buying books, investing in experiences rather than stuff and building my own business.
Still, there’s an itch inside of me that tells me it would be easier to live a “normal life”. To get a regular job and that damn half-wall-sized TV. But this HDMI cable is a reminder for me that the “norm” is unacceptable for me. How could I spend a few hours watching TV if there’s never enough hours in the day?