Useless Utilities

I had the TV on earlier today and gave some thought to something many people consider a utility – their cable or satellite television service.  I’ve not personally paid for nor used these services for nearly 5-years now and everything I watch on TV I watch through perfectly legal and legitimate methods.

I find it odd that they are always referred to as a utility.  To me a utility is something that would make life incredibly inconvenient if you stopped purchasing the service.  Gas for heating the house, Electricity for running lights at night, etc.  Somehow, a cable TV bill doesn’t quite sound like a necessity to me. 

That said, I have used those services in the past.  I last had cable television in 2007 when I lived in the Crap Shack.  I decided I wanted to economize and I turned it off.  Sure, I missed it at first, but then I discovered something strange… There was a huge world outside the house.   The first time I realized that I didn’t really miss this “utility” was when I cared for my grandfather for two-weeks in March 2011.  My mother went on a cruise, and I went to stay at their house with him and they had satellite TV service.  I thought it would be interesting to have access to it again after four or so years of not having it.

All I discovered is that it was 200 channels of nothing to watch.  I cannot figure out why anyone would want to pay over $100 per month to have this “utility”.  It’s functionally useless.  I would consider Internet service a utility before I considered cable television as one.

This is not to say that I don’t watch TV.  I do have a rooftop antenna, and I do have Netflix.  What is my total television entertainment bill for using these items?

A whopping $8 per month, or less than what I make in one-hour working.  I can’t figure out how people scrimp on groceries but will gladly pay over $100 per month for this so-called utility.

Personally if I could find myself a situation where I could keep a job similar to what I have now, have a house on a southwest facing slope, and access to water, I would get rid of the other utilities as well.

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