My Eyes Glaze Over Every Time You Try Telling Me About A Show That I "Need" To Watch
We’re all selfish people at our core. You can bloviate all you want about how you really listen when people talk and do things out of the goodness of your heart expecting nothing in return, but that’s a lie. You know it and I know it. It’s okay to admit it - I think being selfish is a good thing in some instances. I like to help people out but I hate the feeling that I’m getting taken advantage of, you know?
This idea that we’re all selfish isn’t just about big things like declining an invitation to help your friend move into his/her new place, it carries over into everyday stuff, too.
If you’re having a conversation with me about something that doesn’t directly affect me or isn’t at least mildly interesting, there’s a very good chance I’m going to zone out and start hitting you with generic responses (i.e. “Classic”, “Yeah….yeah I totally get what you’re saying”) to your anecdotes regarding commute times to and from work. I mention commuting to work because oftentimes this kind of stuff happens while you’re talking to coworkers. And inevitably you’ll get to the point in a conversation where you’re talking television while waiting for your lunch to heat up in the microwave.
We live during a period of time where there are so many new television shows coming out on different streaming services that it is impossible to consume all of it. A lot of it is crap - it seems like Netflix pumps out a new tv show every week and way less than half of them are palatable. There’s just something about listening to someone give me their unsolicited opinion on what tv shows I should be watching that really grinds my gears. It goes back to my point about being selfish. How many times have you been discussing the latest episode of Succession, The Sinner, or The Wire that you’ve seen only to have another person not involved in the conversation chime in about a show that they are watching? It happens weekly to me.
These recommendations that our coworkers, friends, and loved ones give us are very similar to a a person showing you what they think is a hilarious video on Youtube.
I’ve made the mistake of showing someone a Youtube clip that I thought was funny before and it never goes quite as well as you think it’s going to. You sit there breathing over their shoulder waiting with baited breath as they get through the video without laughing, and then you feel like a total moron for ever thinking that this was a good idea in the first place.
The same goes for tv shows. In the moment, if you’re telling me about a show that you absolutely adore that I should totally go home and watch tonight, I’ll say “sure, this sounds awesome” because I’m not a total monster, but in my head my mind is already full of blah.
I know it sounds harsh to say that I’ll never, under any circumstances, watch a show that someone recommends to me, but for the most part it is the gods honest truth. Much like remembering someones name, an unsolicited tv show recommendation goes in one ear and out the other. It’s one thing if I’m asking someone for a new show to watch, but we really need to get out of the business of telling others what they should be watching.