Dennis O’Neil: Television Is Sacred

Well, I predicted it.

Mari and I sat in the living room until about nine, and then she turned out a front light and we returned to our sacred duty, watching television.

Before we continue… You’re vexed by that last statement? Teevee watching a sacred duty? Eh? Okay, consider: Almost beyond doubt there is a television in every home in our village. And almost beyond doubt, each of those television sets gets turned on and heeded each and every day except for those belonging to our townsfolk who may occasionally leave screens dark for religious reasons. Now, there is nothing else that is in every – every! – domicile. Mezuzahs, bibles, Boy Scout oaths, crucifixes, copies of the Declaration of Independence, scientology tracts, Buddhist sutras, the collected works of Ayn Rand – sure, you’ll see those here and there, but not everywhere. But we all own televisions and we all watch them once in a while, or oftener, and anything that’s done by everyone must be important and – correct me if I’m wrong – isn’t it a short step from “done by everyone” to “sacred”?

Glad we got that settled.

And no, I don’t know what we watched. Like that matters!

The faithful among you may remember that last week I attributed our lack of Halloween trick-or-treaters to the difficulty of trudging to the top of our hill, especially if you’re afoot and coming from the center of town, and the few dwellings on our particular block, and the utter absence of businesses.

I may have been mistaken.

Tomorrow, as I write this, is the day we good citizens vote. My lefty/hippie politics are no secret and so it’s reasonable to suppose that my Political Enemies (for surely they exist) decided to nullify whatever polling place influence I might have by diverting such costumed visitors who were bound for my front porch.

“Hey kid,” they might have hissed at some fledgling goblin (and don’t these types always hiss!), “those people at the top of the hill have sprayed their lawn with Ebola and are brewing up cyanide lemonade in their kitchen.”

The youngster would flee and Mari and I would be alone on our couch as the hours ticked by which, as a matter of fact, is what happened. Then, my Political Enemies might suppose, I would become so despondent at my being ignored that I would climb into the attic, hunker down between stacks of comic books, put my thumb in my mouth, and moan until well past voting day.

Not going to happen. (At least I don’t think it will happen, though voting day isn’t until tomorrow and who can predict the future? But no – I’ll probably steer clear of the attic.)

And what about you? Did you avoid the attic? Did you do your duty and vote?

I certainly hope so.

Unless you’re a Political Enemy.