My earliest childhood memories of media use are quite vague. As a child, my mother rarely let my brothers and I watch television. She used to tell us that we had to use our imaginations to keep ourselves occupied. I could never understand why. Thankfully, we were allowed one program a day. I always spent it on Zoobalie Zoo, a classic 80's television program, after school everyday over cookies and milk, faithfully.
"The tube" never really played a huge role during my adolescence. Partly because my mom did not always allow it, and partly because I was interested in other things like being outdoors, coloring, and playing pretend. Don't get me wrong, I enjoyed TV and never missed an episode of Zoobalie Zoo, but I loved playing games and stuff with my friends more. .
Playing pretend was the best game. I used to go to a catholic school and can remember when my friends and I used to pretend that we were priests. We would pretend that my living room was the church. We"d use the microwave as the tabernacle and potato chips as Holy Communion. Our biggest fights were who was going to be the priest first. It's funny looking back now at how simple games like "pretend" amused little kids.
Not until I ventured into middle school did I fall into the trap; the television. I was older now and my mom didn't monitor the amount of television usage I could have. At this age, it wasn't cool anymore to play silly games like "pretend." The new thing was 90210, a Beverly Hills teeny bop TV show in the 1990's. If I didn't know what the status of Brenda and Dylan's relationship was, then I wasn't cool enough. So, naturally, because I was at that age where fitting in was key, I started to become more of a TV enthusiast. .
The TV was such a great source of entertainment. The more I watched, the more I was consumed with it. I became dependent on the television as my source of relief from boredom. This inevitably, prevented any creative instincts I had from flourishing because the television never allowed my imagination to work.