Too much reality?

I don’t know about you, but when I watch television, I’m looking for some temporary escape.  Yet I notice that current programming seems to consist mainly of reality shows.  If I want reality, I’ll watch the news.  It isn’t my intention to pan these reality shows for there are a couple I like to watch, namely “Ghost Hunters” and “Pawn Stars”.  “Ghost Hunters” feeds my interest in the paranormal, which is why I enjoy it.  “Pawn Stars”, especially when they call in the experts, can be educational.  I’ve learned some interesting things from these experts.

I also understand why reality shows are so popular with the networks and the cable channels.  They’re cheaper to produce than shows such as “Castle” or the “CSI” franchise.  But do people watch these reality shows because they find them amusing, or is it a case of hoping it’s gonna get better?

While on the topic of reality, I note there appears to be a trend toward using sports figures to shill for various products.  There is a commercial for Head and Shoulders shampoo that apparently uses some football player sitting at a piano.  I say “apparently” for there are goalposts visible in the background.  I have no idea who the hell he is, other than he didn’t play for the Toronto Argonauts.

The other one that comes to mind, mainly because I just watched it, is for one of the poker sites.  The person in this case is someone named Georges St Pierre.  Okay, and what is this man’s claim to fame?  According to Google, Georges St Pierre is a mixed martial arts fighter and in fact is the current welterweight champion.  I also discovered he’s Canadian.

I can see using an actor or singer as a spokesperson, for they would be well-known and would (or should) appeal to a wide audience.  But using a sports figure who may not be known outside his team’s home town; or a mixed martial artist would seem to restrict the appeal to a niche audience.  What kind of response would some relative unknown get? Just sayin’.

Enjoy your week and remember to hug an artist – we need love too (some product endorsements wouldn’t hurt either). 🙂


Sometimes they are real

One of the shows I like to watch is “Ghost Hunters”, about TAPS – The Atlantic Paranormal Society. Despite the name, the two people who founded TAPS are plumbers by trade so are well-grounded in reality.  I’ve always had an interest in the paranormal and one thing I like about this show in particular is that as far as they are concerned, everything that goes bump in the night is not paranormal. Being plumbers and accustomed to figuring out why that tap turns on by itself, they look for logical reasons for the noises or events with paranormal activity being far down the list of possibilities.

But of course there are times when things genuinely can’t be explained away by everyday reasons.  On this show, it is common for the homeowner or the person who invited TAPS to investigate to ask if the place is indeed haunted.  In all the episodes I’ve seen, I don’t think I’ve seen the founder, Jason, go any farther than to state there are definite signs of paranormal activity.

As we sit in the safety of our living rooms, or dens, watching these people investigate possible hauntings, it is easy for us to forget that in some cases, there is the possibility that these people could really be putting themselves at risk.  TAPS uses production crews to tape the investigations, rather than handheld cameras.  That there is indeed physical risk involved was brought home during a recent show when one of the production crew, a young woman, was physically attacked by some unseen entity.  This particular investigation was taking place at a location where female visitors have reported various attacks in the past.  In this case, the young lady had her forearms scratched badly enough the camera had no problem picking up the injuries.  She went outside to where they were monitoring everything, but later returned to the building.  Once again, she was scratched by this whatever it was. Her back, neck and abdomen all bore visible scratch marks.  One of the male investigators also suffered a scratch from unseen hands on his neck.

As I wrote above, we may consider the possibility that the investigators themselves may be at risk from unseen entities, but how often do we consider the film crews?  I know I hadn’t.

The point of this posting?  First, it’s a good show, and second,  sometimes those things we think we see out of the corner of our eye really are there.  Sometimes those things that going bump in the night aren’t just the cat playing around, or like my cat, beating up one of his stuffed toys. Sometimes they are real.

You may scoff and say “there’s no such thing as ghosts” but I’m not going to believe you.  I’ve had too many personal experiences that prove otherwise.

Since it’s Friday, enjoy your weekend and if, like me, you’re caught in this massive snow storm, be careful if you have to drive and don’t overdo the shovelling. Oh yes, remember to hug an artist – we need love too.