What happened?

What happened?….
I was sitting on my couch the other night, looking for something to watch. There was no baseball that I could watch, because I will not pay extra for the all-baseball, all-the-time channels (IE; MLB Extra Innings..), and everything else just seemed, well, meh. It got me thinking about TV the way it was say 10-years ago. In the grand scheme of things this is not a very long time, but in the world of mass media such as television, be it over-the-air or cable, 10 years is an eternity. This also got me thinking about the content that is aired on the various networks. The main players such as ABC, NBC, CBS, and FOX are not being considered, as their content is for general consumption and basically runs the gamut of television offerings. I am more specifically referring to the cable networks. I am going to attempt a simple graphic representation of where my general point is going. The question that I am really asking is, ‘What happened to the cable networks as far as their original format was and what did they become in the years after?’ Here we go…
Network… What it was… What it is now.
MTV… Music Videos and news… Really bad reality TV.
HGTV… Design / Home Improvement… Really bad Real Estate Reality TV.
History Channel… Historical documentaries. …Auctions and pawn shop TV.
Discovery… Interesting knowledge… Reality car building/ lumberjacks.
Bravo… Interesting films… Real Housewives etc…
TLC… Learning about things… Really bad reality TV.
National Geographic… The world… Reality cops and bad folks.
Biography… Famous and historical.. People Reality Real Estate.

Are you seeing a trend here? I understand the economics of it. Reality TV shows are dirt cheap to make, meaning that the network gets to keep more of the green stuff. Hooray for them. However, the programming SUCKS. Let me repeat that. THE…PROGRAMMING…SUCKS. So we as consumers pay the ever skyrocketing monthly cable/satellite rates for less and less quality programming. I am as guilty of it as anyone. I have tried to mitigate the issue in my house by getting a Roku (streaming TV device, thanks to my brother Marshall…), but it still only slightly lessens the pain. I know that there are many who are ‘cutting the cord’, and some have actually seen some satisfaction and success. Sadly, that does not seem to be the case with most of the people that I have spoken to about this. I am still looking into a hybrid solution which simply means cutting back on cable-offered services, keeping the internet, and watching more streaming free and subscription based content. I will update you all on how this works out…
Alright, let me get this out of the way and be done with it. Donald Sterling. Racist. Scumbag. All of the things that we hate in a human being wrapped up in one philandering, prejudiced, miserable, cheap old man with a beastly gold-digger on his arm. Got it… The things that he said in the past, as well as most recently were reprehensible, and not acceptable in polite society. Check. He has been simply the worst owner in any major professional sport, possibly in the history of owners. Check. But should this reprobate, this misery, be stripped of his livelihood because of what he says and thinks? Now before you have the same knee-jerk reaction that just about everyone else has had regarding his remarks about blacks and latinos that we have all heard ad nauseum, think about this simple question…Did he break any laws? Even one? In these United States, a person is allowed to state his opinion, no matter base and vile and disgusting it may be. He is allowed to think whatever he wishes. This is not George Orwell’s 1984. There is no such thing as ‘thoughtcrime’. I understand that the NBA has bylaws that govern how its owners and players behave. He signed it. He broke it. He is now been fined $2.5 million dollars, and he has been banned from any and all NBA and team activities for life. The other 29 NBA team owners will be prevailed upon to take action to force Mr. Sterling to sell his franchise. The bottom line is that he is indeed allowed to say and think whatever his sick diseased heart and mind want to, but with the understanding that with great power comes great responsibility, and sometimes it comes with consequences as well…Now I need to go take a shower and scrub vigorously to get the stench of this topic off of me.
From the ‘stupid is as stupid does’ file. Florida State quarterback and reigning Heisman Trophy winner Jameis Winston was issued a civil citation after sheriff’s deputies say he walked out of a supermarket without paying for $32 worth of crab legs and crawfish. Really? You are a Heisman Trophy winner, and you decide to steal some crab legs? While this does not qualify for a Darwin Award nomination, there should be another category of awards for things like this. I can guarantee that he will (at the prodding of his lawyers), go on TV and show some contrition and say how really sorry he is. Uh-huh. It will be a canned apology that was written by some paralegal, and it will be really obvious that it was. I think that the only things that Jameis Winston will be truly sorry for is, 1-that he got caught in the first place, and 2-this may damage his value in a future NFL draft. In short…what a schmuck.
I just read where John Tortorella was fired as the coach of the Vancouver Canucks, just one year after he was fired as the coach of the New York Rangers. Hey Torts? Get a clue that your hard-ass act may be wearing a little thin. On a related note, my beloved New York Rangers defeated and eliminated Pittsburgh Penguins 2-1 in Game 7 of their series. The Blueshirts had gone down 3 games to 1 before mounting their epic comeback! I actually got to watch some of it, which is unusual. I have no problem with the Penguins as an organization. They have been classy and reasonable consistent since the days of Mario Lemieux. But you can bet that there will be changes coming…perhaps BIG changes. I would be willing to wager that Dan Bylsma will no longer be the head coach, and GM Ray Shero may be gone as well. The only players that are still reasonably secure are Sidney Crosby and Evginy Malkin. Everyone else is, shall we say, expendable.

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