“Cutting” the cable, wherein “cutting” cleverly replaces the word “canceling.”

A few months ago I made an announcement to my friends and family: WE ARE CANCELING CABLE. This proclamation does a few things –

(a) It gives an air of sophistication to the proclamationer. It says, “I don’t watch television because my mind is my most important possession. I’m assuming you don’t feel the same, and I accept that, because in addition to having strong opinions on media consumption in this country, I’m also capable of recognizing that my lifestyle may not be the best choice for you.”

(b) It screams, “I’m technologically savvy!” It’s kind of like getting rid of your cable box and purposefully keeping the cable box shelf in your entertainment center empty so someone will ask you about it. Oh, you watch television on a cable box? Huh. Oh, I just have a PC attached to my TV, 500 terabytes of legally obtained television shows, and this virtual reality helmet lets me control it all. No, we can’t watch King of Queens, the firewall won’t allow it. Also, TCP/IP’s, .NZB’s, 1080p’s, etc.

(c) It kinda makes the proclamationer sound like a douche.

The Netflix streaming factory. This woman is ensuring that there are two terrific movies and tv shows available for every 10,000 unwatchable pieces of shit.

My fiance and I had lofty dreams of life without cable. All the shows we wouldn’t be able to watch, all of the conversations about television shows that we could easily dismiss because, ahem, we don’t “do” television. Plus, every single device in the house can stream Netflix content, and that’s like basically the same as having cable, right? There’s Netflix on the XBox, the dusty old Wii, our computers, our phones, the fridge, the iPad, our graphing calculators, our electronic dream journals… you name it, chances are pretty good that it can stream Netflix content. The problem is that I’ll think of a movie I want to watch and I’ll check to see if it’s available to stream on Netflix, it’s all like, “Add Texas Chainsaw Massacre: The Next Generation to your snail mail queue, you’ll get it whenever you decide to return Billy: The Early Years of Billy Graham!” And you know, I just like the idea of having Netflix’s copy of Billy: The Early Years of Billy Graham sitting on my shelf? And I don’t want to return it? And by now I’ve completely forgotten that I wanted to watch the Texas Chainsaw with Renee Zellweger and Matthew McConaughey in the first place, and just watch people falling down flights of stairs on Youtube instead. I understand that I started this paragraph talking about television shows and now I’m talking about movies, so please accept my apologies and refer to point (a).

Now Amazon is offering free streaming of select movies and TV shows for Amazon Prime members. I thought this would be perfect! Amazon Prime is the greatest invention of all time, and it changed the way I shop. For example – I’m out of deodorant. Duane-Reed is about four blocks away. Outside. With Amazon Prime I can get a single stick of deodorant delivered to my door, and what the hell, let me just order some cat toys, four USB cable caddies, a USB cable caddy caddy and a few six packs of ginger beer. Yes I’d like my order shipped in as many boxes as possible, of course I want it delivered for free. 24-48 hours later it’s like goddamn Christmas morning, except I’m the only one getting presents, which is the greatest Christmas gift of all. So now Amazon Prime, on top of all of the joy and cat toys that Margot instantly loses as soon as I open the box, you’re going to throw in free movies? This is AMAZI-Oh… they’re all pretty much the same thing as Netflix huh? And I can’t watch streaming Amazon movies on any of the previous devices I listed to great comedic effect? OK. It’s OK Amazon Prime. You’re still the best at filling my hallway with boxes and bubble wrap, and Netflix can never take that away from you.

After tinkering with streaming sites and illegal downloads and honest-to-god rabbit ears, plus coming to terms with the fact that I begrudgingly like having cable for the odd episode of Intervention and repeats of Mr. Show (that I have on DVD but they’re all the way over there), we wound up just keeping the stupid cable. I just don’t mention it around my friends and family that were on the receiving end of my bold proclamation. I just throw a blanket over the cable box whenever anyone comes over, that usually does the trick. Now I think I’m going to start my own streaming site to compete with Amazon Prime and Hulu Plus and Netflix Pant. And it’s going to have every movie on earth, and it’s going to have every TV show on earth, and it’s going to be awesome. Give me a year to get some funding and some servers and check back for a major announcement regarding Super TMH PrimoPlus+.

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