Like most of us, I grew up watching television, probably too much of it. As an adult and a parent, I tried to severely limit television, realizing how much of my time it wasted. I even threw out a few televisions when my husband was at work because he and my kids were turning into zombies and didn't cooperate with the restrictions. He would come home after a hard day at work and sit down to relax in front of the tube only to realize that, once again, it had gone out with the trash that morning. Before too long, my parents would buy another one so that my kids weren't deprived. I would warn them that, if it got out of hand again, I would have no problem throwing it out again. I probably got rid of three or four television sets. I still don't watch network television and use a TV set only for movies. However, there are a few programs I enjoy that I can access on the internet.
This week, I was lucky enough to be on a community television program in South Deerfield, Massachusetts called "The Song," hosted by Mary Whelan. It's a great show featuring songwriters. She interviews people of all ages and all walks of life. Everyone at the station was so warm and welcoming. It was a real privilege to be on this wonderful show. The other performers over the years have been great too, and there is such a variety of styles represented. It was a little difficult for me because there was no visible audience. I have finally learned how to interact with the crowd and felt a little lost. However, because the crew was so wonderful, I managed to put on a good show anyway.
I remember when my dad, a newspaperman, was on "Meet the Press" on NBC in New York City as part of the panel of questioners. He was so nervous, he almost passed out. He was invited back but declined because it made him so sick. Here was a man whose column had sometimes been sent over the AP or UPI wires, a man who was editor in chief of The Stamford Advocate when it won a Pulitzer Prize, a man well-respected by so many, and he couldn't face being on television. I'm so glad I worked on my shyness and have come to a point where I can stand in front of a camera and not faint away or just babble incoherently. It's been hard work to get over myself, but with the help of close friends and lovers, I have managed to do just that. Check out "The Song" and see what you think.