The problem with going to bed early is that your body will likely wake up in the middle of the night, rested to its usual capacity and now ready to rock. My mind, however, will often disagree with my misinformed body. Wondering if I should get out of bed at 3:52 AM is usually a short-lived thoughtversation, because eventually my warmed body will just remain underneath the protection of my beloved comforter. Today, however, my right hand, draped alongside my bed, decided to walk itself along the floor over to my remote control and see what’s on TV.
Perhaps there will be something on television to numb my brain, and I can return back to slumber. Perhaps there will be something decent to stare mindlessly at until my alarm wakes me up in a few hours. Perhaps.
As it turns out, 4 AM television is in a league of its own. An entirely different, unworldly, mind-boggling league of its own.
I couldn’t help but wonder what the statistics must look like for the 4 AM target audiences. Yes, I realize that most of the city is asleep right now, but if this is any indication of what television producers believe the majority of us are interested in, this world is in sadder shape than I thought.
I push the power button. The first thing I see? Mario Lopez’s guyliner on Access Hollywood. He’s still talking about Kate’s wedding details, which in my mind is sooo Friday.
NYNews has a local shellfish compare-and-contrast special going on that looks like it was filmed using an
Iphone Android. (That’s right, I went there. #burn)
The next channel is USports, and they’re showing Chinese Olympic diving reruns. Is this like, a thing? Does Chinese diving have some rabid fan base that I’ve just never known about? After watching a couple divers do a few difficult-looking combinations, I came to the conclusion that not only had I been staring blankly at the TV for 6 minutes with my mouth hanging open for no apparent reason, but there were probably no such thing as bad Chinese Olympic divers anyway.
An infomercial. It’s about time. Isn’t that what 4 AM television is known for? Monotone couples talking about their “Wealth Without Risk: The Path to Happiness” experience to an overly peppy host, neither of which look particularly wealthy or happy. In fact, they look like they’ve just woken up at 4 AM and are ticked off nothing good is on TV too.
On the LiveWell channel, there’s another overly peppy host in what looks like a Starbucks bathroom, making homemade face masks. Because I guess when you’re watching TV at 4 AM, you’ve obviously got nothing else to do. Like sleep.
It’s time for a sneak peak for the Brazilian Butt Lift Workout Program! Become the Ultimate Butt Master! Tush Technician! Divine from Behind!! Buy my workout and look better, fat ass!!
There’s a random foreign movie playing, which is a bit refreshing – until I figure out it’s basically about an eight year-old Indian kid living in Quebec. He appears to want to shave his head, and is somewhat obsessed with pouring hot oatmeal onto anyone who tries to interact with him. [Insert joke about how Americans don’t understand anything foreign, or cultural, or anything at all actually].
Now there’s another movie, but this time it’s a good ol’ 1990’s USA ski movie, complete with eye-popping neons, soda pop, innocent teenage love, an overload of slang and multiple thumbs up signs, and hair. Ahh, America. I love you.
Kids channel. There’s a hippo, a bird, and a little girl. “Pickle?” “No.” “I’m going to push it in.” “Then why is your hand in my hole?” “You really expected me to not put it in there?” — Wait, what?
In my state of confusion, I clicked over to The Knife Show. Where there’s “One Knife Winner Every 10 Minutes”, 400 exclusively designed steak knives in the world available only for the next 19 minutes, and apparently glass pocket knives. Seriously, world? Anyone who purchases a $170 dollar knife on sale for $50 (+ shipping and handling) at 4 AM should instantly be on our nation’s Watch List.
The last two channels contain Gen & Gen’s Gourmet Guiltless Grill, where she is apparently pretending that tofu is just as delicious as ice cream as well as simultaneously giving the letter G a bad rap, and a CBS news special about obese Americans and what causes joint pain (hint: the answer is obese Americans).
So, correct me if I’m wrong, but from this data, I think I can conclude that the average 4 AM television watcher must be a slightly worn-down Chinese mother struggling with poor skin care, culture shock, and weight gain.
UPDATE: I just did a quick round 2 flip-through of the channels again. I saw Elvira waving her arms in the air, a Catholic mass, some foreign game show that looked as if it bordered on human torture, and Mr. T selling cookware.
Mr. Television Producer, your mind is an enigma.