GASP – Cable for Christmas
For Christmas last year, I surprised my family by signing us up for Cable TV. I know this is a must have for many of you, but we were fine with rabbit ears for the decade preceding this momentous event. This mundane event for most of you, was momentous for my family because I’d taken a firm stand against paying for cable when we could watch movies, or (gasp) interact with each other or (gasp x 2) go outside and be active. That was $40 a month more we could and should be adding to college or retirement funds.
However, there are some cultural aspects of watching TV that I didn’t want my kids to miss out on and finally swayed me to get cable.
For example: I relate to others in my age group by referring to Wonder Woman, Smurfs, the Little Rascals, Popeye, Star Wars, the Bionic Man, etc.
As much as I cringe at the thought of Hannah Montana and the Wizards of Waverly Place being iconic symbols of my children’s childhood, I do accept that a woman flying in the air in her invisible plane (although she was visible) was probably equally irritating to my parents.
This was a fairly long winded introduction to my true question.
Do I continue with DirecTV, switch providers, or (gasp) cancel cable this Christmas?
The reason I ask is that I signed a 2 year contract with DirecTV which gave me a $25/month discount for the first year. That means I will be paying $25 more per month in 2011 than if I went to another company or even cancelled and went back to DirecTV the next month. I have a $10/month cancellation fee for terminating my contract early ($120/year) versus $25/mo extra for staying put ($300/yr). Switching would put me $180 ahead for 2011 – even with paying a termination fee. This $24.99/month deal from Dish Network is looking awfully appealing…
My other choice is to just cancel cable completely. I detest the insipid preteen shows on Disney. They are idealizing behavior that I do not want my children to learn or value. At the very least I am going home and blocking the Disney channel. Weird to put a parental block on Disney, don’t you think?
Beyond the disagreement regarding viewing preferences, cancelling is looking appealing because my husband isn’t working and unemployment insurance ran out. We can afford to continue cable, but it clearly isn’t a necessity in life (regardless of what my family believes) and I’m all about reducing those monthly obligations. Again, that’s $65 (now)/mo that we could be putting into the vacation pot, college, or retirement savings.
So, here are my questions for you:
1) Switch providers? If so, who do you recommend?
2) Cancel cable? Your thoughts?
3) Disney channel – is it just me?