The Golden Age of Television

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By: Thomas W. Schulte, CFP®

 

Circa winter 2000, a young Schulte family was traveling high above the Pacific Ocean, taking up an entire plane aisle with a parent strategically seated in each middle seat. The six of us patiently waited on the edge of our seats for the 4”x 8” televisions to unfold from the top of the cabin and begin playing the featured presentation, Coyote Ugly. At some point, the film must have burst through my parent’s perceived level of appropriateness as my Mom instructed my Dad to cover us kids’ eyes, in an attempt to shield us from whatever was on the painfully small screens. Since this film was being played throughout the entire plane, I have to think that it couldn’t have been too racy, but enough to cause one of those painfully awkward moments that I think most can relate to.

From everyone in my family acting as if they hadn’t seen/heard a particularly crude remark, to my Mom demanding we change the program– I have spent 98% of my life

fearing one of these awkward moments induced by inappropriate, often hysterical media. However, with all of us now grown and out of college (some even married) and our parents’ newfound comedic leniency, we have been enjoying all sorts of inappropriate shows and movies together over the last few years. I’d like to call this, The Golden Age of Television. Together we crack Seinfeld jokes, cower during gruesome murder mystery documentaries and have even ventured into some late-night standup comedy. We have truly found freedom in television. But as they say, all good things must come to an end.

Asha Grace Ghosh was born on Monday, July 20th and has been the newest addition to our family (a proud new uncle here). And though she probably can’t understand crude television humor (I am not convinced she can’t– she has very smart parents), her presence serves as a reminder of the changing times. Soon we will be limited to our programs of choice until after Asha heads to sleep. However, new babies will be born, grow up with exceedingly later bedtimes and this vicious cycle will continue. Those painfully awkward moments are bound to occur again. The only difference will come from the hands of the new parents, shielding the eyes of comedy-deprived children.