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Mandy Jackson-Beverly Headshot

OMG, I Think I've Got TADD!

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Is your family dangerously close to having TADD - Television Attention Deficit Disorder? Here are a few of the symptoms:

  • Unable to watch anything over an hour in length.
  • Must have an actor explain their feelings rather than act them out.
  • Become anxious when a sub-title appears.
  • Would watch a Seinfeld rerun (again) rather than sit through the beginning of Melancholia.
  • Netflix movies sit on the coffee table for weeks before being returned unseen.
  • The remote handler races through Netflix waiting queues faster than the speed of light, then gets annoyed when others in the room didn't see the choices in the queue.
  • Watches episodes on laptops or cell phones anywhere, anytime, anyplace.
  • Watches episodes while multi-tasking.

The other night while my family and I watched an episode of Family Tree, thanks to my DVR, I came to the stunning conclusion that I was jonesing to watch a good movie. My boys suggested that I find one and they'd be happy to watch it with me.

I searched ravenously through the instant watch selection on Netflix and HBOGO, but 40 minutes later, I'd found nothing to soothe my movie hunger. I hunkered down and began sorting through our DVD collection. My hand hovered with lust above my girlie flicks, but I knew that the only member of the family who wouldn't complain about having to sit through one (again) would be Cash. He is, without a doubt, the most submissive dog in the history of the world, and he'll watch anything.

It's extremely difficult finding something that works for our whole family. For the three males of the clan it's easy, they'll watch episodes of Breaking Bad over and over again. But witnessing British servants wait on aristocracy who slip on bars of soap or seeing vampires rip each other apart doesn't really do it for my boys.

Considering our diversity in tastes, our family television times have narrowed down to a choice few. Real Time with Bill Maher and The Daily Show are winners and keep us sane. Portlandia, Family Tree and Parks and Rec are good for a giggle, as is the BBC. And Sherlock? Well, who doesn't like a good Sherlock?

But I'm concerned. We seemed to have lost our viewing attention span. What's happened to us? How do folks without a DVR cope? How can they all watch the same thing? How can entire families keep quiet during movies that drive others in the room crazy?

After spending over an hour looking for a movie that would satisfy all of us, I gave up and went to bed and read. A few nights later we sat happily watching the perfect movie, Waking Ned Divine, life was wonderful again. BTW, does anybody know if a new series of Summer Heights High or Flight of the Conchords is ever going to happen? I'm so ready.