I’m told that screens were once novel items. People took notice of them because they weren’t everywhere. Now, however, screens are ubiquitous. As I type this I have a laptop in front of me, a secondary display to my left and a large flat screen (at this moment turned off) also available. I’m overwhelmed by screens and yet I can’t seem to get enough of them. Brooke’s reaction to Alcott’s “Television” describes a very similar problem, writing “The television taunts me, ‘I am here for you’ (21) and I listen to it every time.
Look at me. Look at me. Look at me, look at me,
—look at me. Look at me. No no no, don’t look
—over there, there’s nothing to look at over
—there, look at me, look at me, look at me.
Are you looking at me? Is everybody looking at
—me? Do I have your attention? Good.
Don’t get the wrong idea. I’m not trying to take
—over your life. You need, what? What do you
—need? You need to, what? Go to the bathroom?
—Fine. Get up, go to the bathroom, come
—back, look at me. You need, what? You need
—to get something to eat? Fine. Get up, go to
—the kitchen, get something to eat, come back
—look at me. You need to, what sleep? Fine,
—get up got to bed, go to sleep, get up, come
—back, look at me.
Okay. So we have an agreement. You will do what
—you absolutely need to do, and when you’re
—done, you will come back and look at me.
Don’t worry about your schedule. I am here for
—you. I am here for you. Twenty-four hours a
—day, seven days a week, I am here for you,
—I am here for you. You need me, I’m here. Fair
—and foul, thick and thin, I am here for you. I
—am here for you. People try to tell you I’m
—bad? You tell them that I am here for you.
—Twenty-four hours a day, fair and foul, thick
—and thin, I am here for you. I am here for you.
—People try to tell you I’m bad, know what it
—sounds like to me? Sour grapes.
You see what I –hey, hey, hey, hey, hey, no don’t
—look over there, there’s nothing going on over
—there, look at me, look at me, look at me.
I’ve got stuff you wouldn’t believe. Danger? Sex?
—Action? Death? Thrills? Comedy? All here, all
—in the next eight minutes.
Can you believe it? You can’t. It’s unbelievable.
—You can’t believe it because it’s unbelievable!
—It’s a miracle.
Just keep looking at me. Just keep looking at me.
—Just keep looking at me. Look at me, look at
—me, look at me, look at me, look at me.
“Television,” by Todd Alcott, is the most realistic sense of personification a t.v. can get. It sounds just like what a television would say to someone. It craves attention, hence the “Look at me. Look at me. Look at me” (1). It pushes the necessities aside and begs to be watched. Television considers itself more important than eating and using the bathroom.
This piece reminds me of myself. When I was younger, I would watch television like there was no tomorrow. I would wake up and the first thing I would do was run into the living room and turn on the big television. I’d watch that for a few minutes until my parents got up and then I would shower and get ready for school. Any spare second I had my eyes were glued to the t.v. I would hold off going to the bathroom until I finished every single second of the show I was watching. My parents would call me to dinner and I would tell them to “wait a minute,” as I was trying to finish the rest of SpongeBob SquarePants. I still sleep with my television on because I’m afraid of the dark. I live right on the outskirts of Sabattus, so all I hear are the cricks and creaks of the house. It always occurs to me that I am going to be abducted by aliens. If I do end up being captured, I would rather not hear them come in to my house. The movement on the screen and the sound makes me feel at ease. The Boogeyman may attack if That 70’s Show isn’t playing in the background. I feel as though Kelso’s stupidity helps keep him away. I wake up in the middle of the night if my screensaver pops up on my television. I push “Enter” to turn it back on and watch t.v. for a few minutes until my eyes grow heavy. This usually occurs twice every night. I feel as though the t.v. is saying, “Watch me!” The television taunts me, “I am here for you” (21) and I listen to it every time. It helps me sleep and it’s always there when I need it. You could say that the television acts as my security blanket. Television may not be a necessity, but it is an enticement.