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I give up

My friends all know it: I don’t have a TV.  The last time I lived it a house with a TV was when I shared a house as a student. Without much thought, I then never had the need to buy a TV anymore. I even developed a strong dislike of TV. Sitting in a room with a TV, I can’t resist watching it. When I ask people to change chairs, so my back is turned towards the TV, I typically blame it on the “untrained eye”, having lost the habit of blocking the noise and fast moving images. It’s worse than that: I fear I secretly enjoy watching TV.

Image of a broken TV in a forest

Foto: flickr.com/albany_tim, Lizenz: CC 2.0 BY

In conversations people occasionally refer to TV programs. When I mention not owning a TV, they mostly turn silent for a second or two. I then help them by saying “it’s not because of religious reasons“. Releived, they’ll invariably claim to “rarely watch it” and if they watch, then “only quality programs“. Most of them claim that they couldn’t do without a TV, the dishonest ones claim that they don’t want to.

A family member recently gifted me a newspaper subscription to NRC Next. It was the most horrible gift I ever received. I used to love the NRC Handelsblad. As a kid, I used to read it cover-to-cover, including it’s bulky weekend edition. Now, unable to throw the NRC Next away unread, my mornings started by reading it’s uninteresting articles. When I went on holiday, I purposely didn’t pauze the subscription.

This week I gave up on the rest of the news. It has been a slow process. Admittedly, I used to have a well stocked Google Reader. With high volume RSS feeds like TechCrunch, Mashable and nu.nl. I got rid of the IT news first, then the generic news. Unfortunately, I found myself visiting the sites of nu.nl and NRC.nl multiple times a day. Installing StayFocusd (Chrome) helped a bit, but my urge for news proved to be stronger then myself. So now, I’ve hopefully found a solution. A maximum of 5 minutes of news per day, a subscription to De Correspondent. And that’s it.

I wonder what’s next.

Best . Parenting . Tip . Ever .

Yoanna dancing

As a purposely uneducated soon-to-be father, I bothered many of my friends for their “golden tip” on parenting. Most of their answers were close to the truth, but disappointing nonetheless: take it as it comes; it’s natural, so you’ll do fine. A “bed extension” came close to the best tip, but the undersigned fresh father, already claims to have found the Best . Parenting . Tip . Ever .

Guess what? It’s a playlist, a simple Spotify playlist. Don’t make it full of children songs, because they’ll bore you quickly. Make it full of songs with which you love to sing along. The songs keep you happy, the vibrations of your voice will soothe your child.
Please share your own playlist in the comments. Bonus points if the songs are on Spotify’s TuneWiki app (which shows you the lyrics, you can sing like  Sinatra).
Here’s Yoanna’s list: