The Herald Bulletin

February 1, 2014

Theresa Timmons: The best that TV offers airs after midnight

The Herald Bulletin

---- — I'm almost 51. That should tell you a lot about me.

Besides the sagging, drooping, thinning, sweating, and chilling, I can't sleep. Sometimes I just lay awake and my active perimenopausal mind relives every perceived wrong that has been committed against me during my tragic life and I plot revenge.

Once I am satisfied with the thought of Seth dangling by his toes from a tree, I go ahead and get up and wander through the house looking for something to do.

That's how I found out that the best of television is aired after midnight.

It's a smorgasbord of programming junk food. There are documentaries about people who weigh 600 pounds. There are shows about how science and smart detective work can solve perplexing crimes. And there is a lineup of excellent infomercials about exercise, cooking appliances, or pimples.

But I find myself drawn, like a fly to manure, to programs about people who have strange obsessions. I can't seem to stop myself. I am sure it is some form of morbid curiosity like when people slow down to gawk at auto accidents.

The hoarders fascinate me. They walk across mountains of debris in their house and sob to the camera about how they are in danger of losing their kids or their pets or their home. They also describe their emotional attachment to waxy Q-tips and empty Starburst wrappers. One woman had a young son who had started to imitate her behavior. He kept everything, even the packaging that his toys came in. He couldn't let go, even saying about a stuffed animal that he never played with, "he is too fragile, but I LOVE him....'

And I haven't mentioned the other obsession program that detailed the life of a woman who grooms...literally....her cat. As in licks. She licks her cat every day. Because she likes to eat hair.

And then there was that married couple who give themselves four or five coffee enemas every day. They like it. One of them leisurely reclined on her side, happily browsing a magazine as the whole process was documented in front of a camera.

I watched it all, with my mouth slightly open and my top lip in that position it goes to when I step in doggie-doo or smell a dead skunk.

And I thought deeply about it all because I didn't really have anything else to do. What is WRONG with these people, I asked myself.

I figured it out. It's brilliantly simple...

They need to stop that stuff.

When I was little my dad told me to stop picking my nose. Now if anyone  ever had a strong case before the Supreme Court in support of nose picking, it could've been me. I had sinus troubles. But picking is gross and my dad said, "NO, STOP THAT!"

The hoarding mom needs to clean up the house. Stop pretending like she doesn't understand why it looks that way - it looks that way because she steps over trash instead of throwing it away. Send the stuffed animal to charity and send the kid outside to play. He seriously needs to climb a tree. 

The cat groomer needs a hairball remedy ... then needs to go to the zoo. To live. I think she might recover more quickly by sharing a cage with other animals than in a psychiatrist's office. 

Now about that coffee enema couple ...

Do they not have jobs?

And you have to wonder about anyone who drinks their coffee through their ..... well, if we all did that, what would happen to the coffee cup industry? And Starbucks would have to be completely redesigned with stalls in place of stools. Or if you think about it, stalls for stools.

Once the enema people perforate something or develop some dangerous heart arrhythmia due to the direct absorption of caffeine, they really shouldn't be at the top of the list to be treated in the emergency room. After all, accidents should take priority. But then again, I guess it all depends on how you define "accident."

Maybe people need to be reminded that the universe doesn't revolve around their strange little heads? But then when you are the star of a TV episode, the TV viewing universe sort of does revolve around your strange little head. Your problem becomes valid.

I guess that means when it comes to watching it, I need to STOP THAT ...

Theresa Timmons' column appears every first and third Sunday. She is an Elwood resident and can be reached at