I will always believe in the magic of television. I always have and as I further immerse myself in the industry, I can tell I always will.
TV is a social experience. For generations people have gathered around a scheduled program like the news or The Voice, spending time in living rooms, bar rooms, or movie theatres with an immediate commonality. TV has the power to brings a community together… be it Bachelor in Paradise and the banter it brings about or a touching news story featuring a family in need. It creates dialogue and debate, it conveys emotion. As a Canadian kid in a hockey household it was watching Sportscentre every morning before school, then the Young and the Restless when we got home followed by CTV Ottawa News. None of these were isolating, I was never watching my own Netflix show on an Ipad with earbuds in. We watched as a family (yes, even the Y&R) and discussed during commercials.
The old soul in me loves the structure of television programming, and I love the tradition. I think that’s why I have always wanted to be a part of it. I want to have an impact on my community, to the scale that mass media can propel. I love the consistency in knowing that the Y&R is on everyday at 4:30 then CTV Ottawa News at 6pm. I know the number of people who appreciate this is slowly dwindling. For example, Joey and I moved into a condo last week and our first priority was replacing the teeny tiny TV with a 55inch and having the Bell guy in to set up our satellite. We justified it as NEEDING TV… needing to feel connected to the real world, the sports world, the news world. There’s nothing we look forward to more than sitting together with a pizza (or slightly healthier option…...) and watching the game. As he was setting it up I asked the Bell guy if the number of people signing up for TV was actually declining and he gushed without taking a breath… “Oooooh yes. Even I don’t have TV.” It broke my heart!
People argue TV is dying. But I say that even when sportscasts turn into virtual reality displays, what matters is that someone’s voice will always commentate the action. That voice will become the background to your memories. Same goes for shows, movies, series as we currently consume them - ultimately the medium doesn’t matter because it is the story that continues to soak in. It’s the visual that we crave.
You’ve heard me whine and complain about putting our devices down. In a seemingly contradictory plea, I urge you to watch a show with someone you love. Maybe it’s the 12-noon news with your grandparents (my FAVOURITE thing to do when I’m home in Winchester visiting them). Or maybe it’s getting into a new series on Netflix with your chill-person. Maybe it’s tuning into Bachelor Nation to critique the love lives of perfect strangers. Hey, again balance comes into play! By the end of the summer Slate and I started doing squats through the Bachelor in Paradise commercial breaks. TV is far more social than sitting cooped up in our rooms streaming Netflix.
My passion for TV is how I know I’m finally in the right place. Taking a sports broadcasting program has me feeling less like an imposter and more like I belong than ever before. I’ve often thought I wish I would have done this sooner but then I look back at the amazing experiences I had at Queen’s, in California, and think I came into this at the perfect time. Old enough to appreciate it, young enough to chase it with all my might. And so here we go… sports, TV, all those Sportscentre mornings growing up coming full circle.