My weekday morning habit is to watch a local breakfast morning show while sipping my tea. I watch for school day weather forecasts, school bus delays or cancellations, and traffic accidents for those who commute that morning. Then there’s some news highlights of what’s happening in our city, local events, crime or other stories.
Twice in a half hour they cover the major news, both local and other.
It’s the news that’s depressing me.
The depressing part doesn’t just include the US political aspects. I find other catastrophes equally, if not more depressing, like the ongoing wars and effects on those poor people, the weather disasters that wipe out homes and communities, the crimes of past and present…it never ends, does it.
When I sit there with my agenda items and my tea, instead of feeling energetic and upbeat, I end up just wanting to strangle someone. Or break something, be that as it may.
As a result, I have decided that I am not going to watch the morning shows anymore. I’d rather watch The Weather Network, or a cooking show instead.
Or nothing at all.
Having said all that, I still want to be informed. I am certainly not dropping all news from my daily media consumption. But instead of just watching what they force feed the viewer on any given television channel, I am going to choose what topic I’m going to delve into.
I’m going to be more picky about what I consume.
One way I do this is by going to Google News. I can change the perimeters to invite link-able headlines of news outlets I like (so for example, I prefer the perspectives of the Globe and Mail over those of the Toronto Star). Then, when I click on ‘news’ I get a bunch of headlines and now I can choose to read what I want.
Same with twitter. I spend a lot of time reading twitter at various kids’ activities, because I’m very particular about whom I follow there. I scroll till I find what peaks my interests at that moment, and then I’m happily reading my news.
I will of course make exceptions. On a particularly messy weather day, I might tune into a local morning show to check on the school bus situation. If I’m busy making lunches etc I can’t really sit and click on websites to get the info I want. Morning shows on tv do a good job covering these types of things. For my partner who has to commute for 45 minutes, any show that includes regular traffic updates is a good one for him. Visuals while having breakfast gives him the chance to plan his alternate route, pending the traffic situation.
So for now, goodbye to morning shows on tv. Maybe I’ll be back sometime.