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August 25, 2000

Fellow told me the other day that his Sunday school teacher asked his class last week for a show of hands if they were watching the new hit TV series "Survivor." To his surprise, only three hands went up. I'm not in that class but I also am among the non-watchers. I also do not watch "Big Brother," although I've heard plenty about it and that is exactly why I don't watch. Both shows have similarities in that they expose people to the TV camera's scrutiny in private moments and otherwise. I certainly hope shows like that do not become too acceptable. Think of the possibilities if such things turn out to be even more pervasive.

I also do not regularly watch "Who Wants to Be a Millionaire," but not for the same reason. It just happens that the pugnacious host, Regis Philbin, is not my favorite TV personality. In fact, he often is a bit of a turnoff. That is simply my own personal feeling and I realize that the public does contain large segments of people who are true Regis fans. I do confess that I have watched portions of his phenomenal show, enough to make me wonder about something. Do you think the contestants have to listen to that same dreadful doomsday music and throbbing drum that we in the audience hear during the game, or is that dubbed in after the taping? That sound by itself would make me lose touch with reality in short order if I were a contestant, and I doubt if I could answer a question above the $100 level.

And while we're on the subject of public entertainment, can you remember a worse summer for movies? Each week I watch for the reviews of new releases in hopes of finding something wholesome or at least a little bit worthwhile. Alas, the pickings have been woefully slim, and I have been frequently disappointed with the ones Laura and I did. choose to see. Gratuitous nudity, profanity and/or violence have spoiled even some of the promising ones. With summer TV fare producing virtually nothing worth watching and with the paucity of good movies, I have been driven to look for other things to do. It would be nice to tell you that I have read several good books, written some long overdue letters or started catching up with labeling those old family pictures, but I cannot honestly say that such has been the case. My self-discipline has been too lax. Next week I've got to start doing something about that.

The folks in Perry's Habitat for Humanity have seized upon a most worthwhile project as they endeavor to build a new home for some deserving family at the corner of Tower and Maple. Despite the current spell of scorching heat, they are working hard to bring that project to conclusion. The problem is, not enough people are showing up for workdays. If you say you are not familiar with the business end of a hammer, there are plenty of jobs for unskilled labor. They will be working again Saturday, starting at 7 a.m., on that new house. You are cordially invited to join them. If you can do so, call Edit Dunn at 336-2150 so she will know how many are coming. Edit is coordinator of volunteer workers. Richard Lambert is president of the local chapter and Randy Treiner is building coordinator. They can use all the help you can give.