A look at Wednesday’s TV war in the Wildsmith household
The clock is ticking toward deadline, and by all rights I should be rushing through this column, my last piece to be written for this week’s edition, in order to get out of here and home to my baby’s loving arms.
Dinner awaits, my comfortable couch beckons, the collection of cats and dogs are standing by to offer their unconditional love. But The Wife, I’m afraid, is counting down the minutes until 8 p.m., at which point the television will be turned to “So You Think You Can Dance,” one of her favorite summer programs.
And I will be in hell.
OK, that’s a bit melodramatic. I don’t loathe the show; I think it’s fair to say that she hated “Battlestar Galactica,” which I watched during its entire four-season run on Syfy, more than I dislike “SYTYCD.” But it’s not exactly the sort of programming to which I want to rush home on a Wednesday evening.
Surprisingly, it’s about the only television show over which we don’t see eye to eye. Both of us being pop culture junkies, we watch a lot of TV, see a lot of movies, listen to a lot of music. Given how busy we both are, it’s rather surprising, really, that we find time in our schedules to devote to the plethora of shows we enjoy, but somehow we find the time, thanks to DVR.
(You’d think that summer would mean more leisure time outdoors, but when it’s as hot as it’s been this week, even nightfall brings little relief. It’s still a sauna outside, just not as bright with a ball of fire cooking the top of your head.)
Even a program like “Deadliest Catch,” which most people would automatically assume to be a show watched by guys enamored with the punishing way of life on an Arctic fishing vessel, is something we enjoy together. In fact, I’m proud to say The Wife watches very few shows considered the exclusive domain of females.
There are no viewings of “The Real Housewives” of this city or that community in our house, no reality shows devoted to vapid-brained celebrities with last names like Hilton or Kardashian. The Lifetime channel could be cut from our cable lineup, for all she would care. She’s even lost interest in “American Idol,” which she watched during its first few seasons.
But for some reason, she loves “So You Think You Can Dance.” Myself ... not so much.
I can appreciate dance as an art form, and I recognize all of the hard work dancers of all styles have to put in to become proficient. I’m a big champion of the Appalachian Ballet Company in these very pages, for Pete’s sake. But for some reason, watching it on television is about as entertaining to me as watching my dog lick himself. There’s always the possibility some clumsy mistake will cause one of the contestants to suffer a transverse fracture that sends a shard of bone through skin, but hoping for such is a little too blackhearted, even for me. (Besides, I’m sure they’d cut that out anyway. They don’t shy away from aspiring dancers who look and move like they just stepped off the catwalk at the Mouse’s Ear, but a bone-shattering tumble off the stage is a no-no, I suppose.)
The Wife doesn’t understand, even though she has her own peculiar hang-up about television: spaceships. She can watch a movie or a program about vampires, or about time travel, or about alien invaders, or kingdoms where dragons roam the earth and a massive wall of ice separates a medieval civilization from zombies and feral tribes. “Game of Thrones,” “True Blood,” “Lost,” “Falling Skies” — she’s a fan of them all, as am I.
But if there’s a spaceship involved, she wants no part of it.
“People living for years in space — it’s not realistic,” she declares. And yes, I have pointed out that neither are any of the above mentioned storytelling devices, but she insists that on the fictitious scale that governs plausible plot points, those things most definitely are more realistic than space travel. Hence the loathing for “Galactica.” And yes, I’m aware that it makes no sense. I don’t understand it, either. And no matter how many friends might tell her differently, she refuses to suspend her disbelief in space travel long enough to give it a chance. As such, we won’t even get into her opinions on the Holy Grail of science fiction, the original “Star Wars” trilogy.
So just as I’m sure she can’t understand why, when “So You Think You Can Dance” comes on, I’d rather be texting something obnoxious to my brother, or poking around Facebook, or reading a magazine, or pestering the pets. It’s quite the conundrum in the Wildsmith household, and certainly it’s incentive for me to take my sweet time wrapping up this column on a Wednesday night, much to the consternation of designer and Assistant Managing Editor Amanda Greever.
Of course, in the grand scheme of things, if the only complaint about my wife (that I’m willing to voice publicly, anyway — I kid! I kid!) is that she likes “So You Think You Can Dance” and I do not, then I am indeed a blessed man. And if she declares it’s a “#%! good show,” as she did when I informed her I’d be writing about it in this column, then I’m content to let her enjoy it.
I’ll happily concede the television to her for a couple of hours. Let’s just hope she won’t mind if I sit there and make spaceship noises.
Steve Wildsmith is the Weekend editor for The Daily Times. Contact him at (firstname.lastname@example.org) or at 981-1144.