Par-lor, n. 1: a room used primarily for conversation or the reception of guests.

I am defining parlor because many of our younger generation would not be able to tell you what a parlor is, or even how to spell it. The parlor of yesteryear is today called the living room or the family room. And I worry considerably about the “guest” most often present there — the thief that is otherwise known as a television set.

A thief, by definition, steals. How can I call something that offers so much marvelous programming, that gives us a window to the world, a thief? Television does, indeed, come bearing gifts, some superb, some just trash in fancy wrappings. But that is the problem. It brings gifts 24 hours a day, with many selections for each hour of every day. It tantalizes us, making us curious about what the next program may have to offer. Perhaps it will show us something new and exciting! Perhaps it will intrigue us with yet another depravity. Well do I remember my family’s first radio. I thought I would be able to hear many things when I was home alone that my parents wouldn’t approve of. My hope didn’t pan out back then, but had I been a teenager nowadays I could have gone OVERLOAD and TILT on the sleaze that TV has to offer. Read the rest of this entry »