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Rant #4
(published Mid-year, 2000)
Don't Let Them Kid You, It'll Be Back Next Year.
by Jim Oliver

It's upon us. I should be relieved. I should be thanking my lucky stars that it should finally come, but I can't. Tonight (the night I'm writing this, not the night you're reading or not reading this) is the final(ly) episode of Survivor.

The very fact that I'm aware of this is a reason for the people at CBS to pat themselves on the back. I use my tv to play video games and watch movies; it has neither a wire nor antennae to bring the sinister world into my house. I've never seen the show and couldn't do so easily or conveniently even if I wanted to. And yet I know that the show will have it's final(ay) episode tonight. It seems that I shouldn't, but I do.

I like to think this is no fault of my own. Not because I'm some particularly holy KILL YOUR TV type; I gave up cable in the interest of regular hot meals at Denny's (a choice I don't think enough people realize they have and one I urge all of you to consider seriously. Do you realize you could eat 6 Southern Slams for the price of basic cable? 8 Sunrise Slams.) I don't hate tv, I just hate reality tv. Partly I hate it because the people on Survivor and any of the other shows that preceded and succeded it that we read about all day, to a person, deserve to die. All for different reasons, and all in differing amounts of pain, but they all deserve to die. All of them. Some of them deserve to watch their children die first.

I'll admit that in my connected days I didn't avoid eMpTyV's the Real World as completely as I might have liked, but I did manage to cultivate one of the more advanced and perfect hatreds for those people that the world is ever likely to see. To say that that show is terrible because it is neither REAL nor based on the simple laws or expectations of this WORLD is too easy and too often done to be worth doing here. I will say, however, that if you or I, dear reader, had ever been asked to live with any of the cast members from those shows (how many have their been now, anyway?) we would be spending the rest of our lives in prison. Some of you would be awaiting execution, others would be settling in to wait for old age or lung cancer to do the work of the Republicans. I can say with relative certainty, however, that we would all wake up with a little smile on our face every morning, thinking about the tremendous service we've done our fellow men.

Mostly, though, I hate it not because it isn't real, but because it would be so much more fun to watch if it were. Survivor should be real. I'd give up Denny's entirely for the privilege of watching Lord of the Flies live and uncut every Wednesday night. "Sucks to your ass-mar, Jill.We have to get that Totem. Climb that tree and bring us a goddamn coconut!" They wouldn't have to give the winner of that game any money at all. Just a shower and the Slam breakfast of their choice. Maybe some treatment for their malaria or hookworm, but the networks would get off a lot cheaper and we'd all see what we've been hoping to all along: the dorky kid getting hit in the head with a giant rock.

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