I am not, by nature, an organized person, but I had the first day of 2010 all planned out. The idea was to ditch my children and my beloved husband Brett by creating some excursion that they could do together without me. Like go to Home Depot or see “Alvin and the Chipmunks.” Then, I was going to settle into my sunroom to watch the new line-up of home improvement shows on HGTV, starting with Jamie Durie’s “The Outdoor Room.” He’s this cute Aussie, and a landscape designer to the stars to boot! Next up was going to be “Curb Appeal: the Block,” in which a makeover show would tackle not just one ugly front yard, but a whole street full of them! Can you imagine? Pure ecstasy. This fantasy day culminated with “Holmes on Homes,” which, contrary to the title, is not soft porn. Holmes is just a good guy contractor who helps people who’ve been f*%$ed by their former, bad guy contractors.
The evening highlight was to be the 9 pm unveiling of the HGTV 2010 Dream House, a contemporary Southwestern abode complete with its own casita. Every year, I dream along with the Dream House. As the camera and narrator take me room-by-room, schooling me in the type of indigenous cedar used on the ceiling beams and showing off the local limestone custom-cut for the fireplace surround, I dream. I imagine that my family and I are the winners, and that, even though none of us ski, we become amazing downhill enthusiasts because of our HGTV Dream House in Winter Park, Colorado.
Last year, I pictured us owning a boutique vineyard in Napa Valley. The year before that, we jet skied from our private dock in Islamorada, Florida (which I’m still not sure is a real place, but whatever). Wherever that perfect Dream House is, I dream of being its perfect owner.
So by now, you know where I am going with this, Cablevision customer that you probably are. Because I am NOT A HAPPY CAMPER, people. I woke up on January 1 of this bright New Year only to find that there was no more HGTV, there was no more Jamie Durie, or Curb Appeal, or Holmes.
There. Was. No. Dream. House.
How is a woman in upper middle class suburbia supposed to dream of a better life out west, due south, or far north, I ask you, without the New Year’s Day tour of her fantasy Dream House? And how is she supposed to fall asleep at night without the soft lullaby of Suzanne Whang, host of “House Hunters” and the wildly popular spin-off, “House Hunters International?”
I’m not faring much better without my Food Network, thank you very much. Not that you asked or cared. I suppose you have your own troubles to deal with, what with your Emeril withdrawl (it racks you with “Bam!”) and your lack of Bobby Flay-vor. Perhaps what ails you is Post Traumatic Iron Chef Disorder. Me, I suffer from Ray’s Disease, an attack that has left me on the verge of saying things like “Yum-O!” when meeting friends for lunch at the diner and “Could you pass the EVOO, please?” at dinnertime. I find myself looking for Giada, Paula and Ina at school pick-up, and hoping to run into Mario in his orange clogs at the shoe store.
I don’t miss Alton Brown all that much. This fact does give me some comfort on these cold, lonely nights. I haven’t completely lost it.
So now, instead of just crying into my Le Creuset cookware, I have been called to action in response to my disappointment. I went online and voiced my opinion at the newly created fansites of “ilovefoodnetwork.com” and “ilovehgtv.com.” I then paused to consider that this is more than I have done in support of (or complaint against) the new health care bill initiatives. Which is pretty sad, but best kept for another article entirely.
I have not yet given up on Cablevision’s promise to get my stations back to me. While I keep the weak flame from my metaphorical Bic lighter flickering in support of the Dream House, I must admit that I have had to surf the channels in order to find a replacement station.
Everyone, repeat after me: E!
It turns out that the entire Kardashian clan – found on E! Entertainment Television pretty much all night long – is more than just a little bit addictive. Who are these people anyway, and what have they done to Bruce Jenner’s face? Further, how is it possible to come up with so many girls’ names that start with K? And does Kourtney’s beaux Scott remind anyone else of James Spader’s character Blaine from Pretty in Pink, (with the prepster look, misogynistic tendencies, and lockjaw), or is it just me?
Here’s hoping that contracts get worked out soon between Cablevision and Scripps Networks. But if not, keep up with me and the Kardashians in an all-new season beginning Sunday, January 24th.