Flashback Friday #10 -College TV

My RISD 20 year anniversary memoir continues.

I grew up a TV junkie but once I got to college I went cold turkey without it (and survived). Very few people in 1983 had TVs in their dorm rooms. It was a luxury and if they did (like my roommate) it was usually a tiny black and white set.

There was a large color set in the common lounge but guess what kids....no cable! In the next few years everyone seemed to have a small TV. Outside of selective viewing, TVs were rarely on. It was probably because of the poor reception (again ...no cable).

My Junior year was the only TV obsessed one...

In 1985, I was a pioneer! I brought the first VCR into Congdon House (the campus house I lived in). My buddies and I walked what felt like a 5 mile hike to the closest video rental place (very few in those days). It was decided that the long walk to rent was not going to be a regular thing so we just bought a movie. We picked one from the "used" bargain shelf. It was the only "cool" movie on the shelf.

My friend and I (and roommate that year), Steve Miller, became very popular. The movie was the first in a future collection but at the time, no one had any other video to watch. It might of been the novelty of having a VCR or the only thing to view without lousy reception but it was watched over and over again during the next couple of months (by us and friends hanging out). I can quote it now more than any other movie (well, how about second most quoted after Star Wars).



One of my favorite scenes...



After Christmas break, I brought back some videos from home and expanded our viewing options. One of the favorites was a Christmas present I got from that year. A compilation of little known art films on one tape...



At the end of a long day, Steve and I would like to sit in our crappy "salvation army" purchased lounge chairs for a "smoke" and a beer and watch a movie. One in particular became habitual viewing. It was a bad recording of a bad movie (but kinda cool) from one of the rare times it aired on cable after it's theatrical release...



I don't have many memories of watching regular TV. The Cosby Show, Dynasty, Miami Vice, Moonlighting and Amazing Stories were the shows that in my circle of friends were "must see TV" by one or more, but were small diversions once a week. Life on campus (at least in my world then) did not live for or around the TV.

I did pull many "all nighters" in college though and one show became welcome company all alone during late hours, Night Watch on CBS with Charlie Rose. This clip below on the topic of "sexual content" in music is laughable compared to today (it features Frank Zappa)...



As the dawn arrived my favorite to watch was...



There was one show I did watch weekly that helped pay my way though college. Thank you, Dad...



I could go on but I think I'll get back to watching "Paris-gate 2007"

1 comment:

  1. megan jeffery6/09/2007 10:38 AM

    I remember logging in a lot of late nights with David Letterman, back when he had the later time slot on NBC. We even wrote a letter to him (as a house) for his MailBag feature. It didn't air. Sniff.

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