Family (3)

TV + PC = PC
In the first half of the 20th century, families clustered around the radio. They bonded and spent their quality time sharing in weekly dramas, news and DJ banter.

In the second half, they did it around the TV.

Now, we've each got our own computers. We've also got netflix and tivo, which relagate TV broadcasts to a poor substitute.

With the exception of Dr Who premieres, I can't remember the last time I watched more than a few minutes of TV as it was being broadcast, or with someone else in the room.

For these premieres, I make weekly visits to a friend and we munch through nibbles watching Peter Capaldi's latest adventure...followed by whatever's on the friend's tivo box. Yes, the friend is gay too and we have zero sexual interest in each other and thus he's what gets called "family".

Tonight, I'm upstairs on my laptop, bingeing through episodes of a radio comedy series. My media player is set to playback at double tempo by default, so I can get through twice as much.

Yes, there's a work ethic for pleasure too.

My parents are downstairs. Father spends his retirement ploughing through every espionage serial we can find, plugged in through the headphones that are my early christmas present for him. In the next chair, in front of a different computer screen and through her own headphones, mother is watching 3 or 4 science documentaries in a row.

We sometimes eat together, and the conversation is usually about computers or what we've been watching on them.

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