Thursday, October 29, 2009

Top Chef… and the social value of television

I didn’t watch a lot of TV as a child.  I would, overall, characterize this as a good thing, as I learned to love to read more than I might otherwise have done.  I didn’t have a television in college either.  Ash and I would occasionally venture down into the MCB basement to watch movies (often obscure Spanish-language films for my classes), but mostly we were entertained by conversation with other residents and between ourselves.  Alicia and I didn’t have a television for the first several years of graduate school, but it was at that point that I started to realize some of the social benefits of having a limited number of televisions.  My friends would invite everyone over to watch either Top Chef or Project Runway, and everyone would bring snacks and built up resentment of school from the previous week, all to share.  This became a lovely ritual, and though it got a little rough while my friends were third years, and has been less regular now that they are interns, it has continued.  The group of people attending has varied slightly over the years, but it has remained a bright spot in my evenings for quite some time.

I went to watch Top Chef last night, and though I’m exhausted today, I had a lovely time.  (As an aside, I wish it would be on earlier in the evening…  10-11pm is much too late for me!)  It’s really wonderful to be able to (re)connect with friends from medical school, and be reminded that there is a job on the other end of this lengthy graduate school trajectory.  Also to be reminded that a leek is not, in fact, a protein, which was mostly what I took away from last night’s show.  I’m sleepy, so this is rambling, but mostly I’d just like to express how thankful I am for friends, and to some extent for television that’s given us an excuse for weekly reunions.

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