High School English with a Twist

The musings of Susan E dot Cohen

Month: October, 2013

Continuing Television Education

Continuing Television Education taking place on Susan's television.

Continuing Television Education taking place on Susan’s television.

Lawyers must go to Continuing Legal Education (CLE) courses. I have chosen to do Continuing Television Education (CTE). I consider CTE to be a very important part of my profession. What that profession is I’m not totally sure, but it involves – or I hope it involves – a lot of television and different kinds of it.

Anyway, CTE requires a certain state of mind. It’s half an hour to an hour of complete focus in the name of television. CTE can occur during lunch or later in the afternoon. It must be completed between 12:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m. otherwise it’s just regular television, and CTE is far from your average television viewing experience.

There are three types of CTE. The first is the most important type of CTE or at least important for me. It’s catching up on one of my favorite shows. Often that means watching the previous evening’s episode. The second type of CTE is trying out a new show without giving up my evening. It’s akin to saving time. Finally, there is always the option of watching Sex and the City reruns on E!, which I do at least once a week. Sex and the City CTE is thirty minutes of trying to figure out why my teenage self loved the show so much. I think a lot had to do with not knowing what it was like to be a grown up. At the same time, I have a greater appreciation for the final seasons now that I am an adult or a semi-adult.

My favorite CTE of the week takes place on Monday, as in today. Monday’s CTE is almost always The Good Wife. Now, I have previously written about this show (click here for those thoughts) and find it to be very invigorating. I’m inspired by Alicia Florrick  and how she solves problems and conducts – well most of the time – herself. After watching the show, I want to be more like Alicia. If say I’m writing an email or running an errand after watching the show, I’m going to do both with dedication and a higher level of intensity. It’s all thanks to my hour of CTE.

In all seriousness, CTE does not exist. Up until an hour ago, there was no such thing as Continuing Television Education. However, there was lunch time television named after the fact that I frequently watch television while eating lunch. Even though I made up CTE, one could argue I just gave lunch time television a more formal name.

Whether I adopt the name CTE or continue to use it’s given name of lunch time television, it really is just loving the ability to watch up to an hour of television in the middle of the day. It likely stems from longing to watch daytime television when I was a kid. Now that I can watch television during the day, I appreciate it and have given it a purpose.

Lunch time television – or afternoon television since sometimes it’s at 4:00 p.m. –  is about pausing my day. It’s about stepping back from work. It’s about recharging. It’s idea time. I find that I work well when I take the time out of my schedule to sit back and relax. I believe in taking breaks when working.

Although I literally just made up CTE, I do hope you you adopt it and help make it a real thing. Then again, CTE is real for me.


My Summer of Scrubs

A few weeks ago, I typed out the the following:

My evening ended like an episode of Girls. A 20-something confused, unsure, and staring with music playing in the background. All that was missing was a preview of next week’s episode. 

A few weeks later (aka now), the following sentiment still holds true. I can’t preview next week’s episode. As I reemerge from two years in academia, I’m finding myself to be in a similar position as my 22-year-old self. The only difference is I have five more years of wisdom and my routine does not include watching Scrubs every single day. Let me expand on that point a little bit and also state that no, I’m not using Girls as my spiritual guide. I do watch reruns of Sex and the City on E! in the early afternoons. I find I now watch the show with a different perspective, but that is neither here nor there.

Yes, after I graduated from Barnard, I watched Scrubs M-F from 3:00-4:00 p.m. and then again from 7:00-8:00 p.m. I had to be home for the show. If I was out, I came home. It was my one constant during my three month job search during the summer of 2008. I basically relied on it. It gave me structure and security. To this day, I’m grateful that Comedy Central made Scrubs part of its programming that summer.

My main motivation for watching the show was I had started watching it a few years before, but had not continued. I had always wanted to catch up and here was my chance. However, a deeper connection with the show was quickly established. I connected to JD and his feelings and observations about the world. During that summer, JD was like a mentor to me.

I was at the bottom of the totem pole and trying to figure things out, here was JD doing the same. JD and his friends were growing up, making mistakes, learning from them, and maturing before my very eyes and I was doing the same. In a way, I was on a parallel course minus becoming a doctor.

I eventually found a job and my afternoons and early evenings with Scrubs stopped, but the lessons from it remain. Scrubs was there when I needed it. It provided a foundation for adulthood.

I’m hoping that television will help me figure out life post-graduate school or at the very least, give me a meaningful routine. Even better, anyone in television want to hire me?