It may not be exactly a pleasure to pay for the Television Licence each year (especially for those too bound up in speculating upon all the terrible ills of the world, to earn a decent living), but, in recent times, there does seem to be something to be said for the simple pleasure of switching to the BBC, secure in the knowledge that one is out of reach by the current myriad of scurrilous and painful advertisements.
So, here's the situation: you've been waiting up all night for ITV's 'The Sketch Show' to begin - possibly gnawing at your fingertips in anticipation of some more comic blundering at the hands of that riotous Tim Vine - and what should happen?
Fifteen minutes into the laughter, suddenly Jim Davidson's overblown, puffy face has appeared on television, only to remind you of your terrible credit rating, all those CCJ's and the fact that you don't own a car! Whilst all the time grubbily sniffing 'a fousand paan's', as though it were a pair of underpants that might be on the turn.
Then it switches to a full-of-sound-and-fury piece of cartoon animation, depicting some dumbfounded creature falling over, crashing his car, tipping boiling water on to himself - apparently inciting people to perform these forms of self-mutilation, on a 'no-win, no-fee' basis.
By this this time, you have become so shocked and afeared at the current state of the World, that maybe even Lee Mack's performance as an unpredictable psychiatrist could appease you....
Then another advert. But you thought you were Okay for a minute there, because there is some clever marketerial trickery employed on this one - it's an ad DISGUISED as a game-show! The no-budget compere is asking questions about what you should do if you're unable to pay back all your existing loans. All the contestants know the answer to this one: 'Borrow your way out of debt....' they all seem to say in unison. And, of course, they're right. Ten points.
It's time to switch off.
Of course, as sit I here, pondering the meaning of it all, and gazing misty-eyed at my own life, it is perhaps a little humbling to see how little it has changed over the last decade or so. Perhaps only in one noteworthy way , the technologies that dominate it are apparently faster, newer and better. I am now a part of the so-called Digital Revolution, and, as such, should be revered.
How come then, that I now subscribe to 77 channels, and there is still nothing on any of them, apart from all those slower, cheaper, nastier advertisements?
It's almost like I've bought into some big lie.....