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Hopes to help those struggling to balance course work and TV

 Max Szyc | Fulcrum Staff
Illustration by Brennan Bova

AS WE POWER through the second semester of the school year, most of us have become well accustomed to the demanding lifestyle that befits the university student. Due to students’ ever-growing list of responsibilities, some have traded in their social lives for nights spent alone with nothing but their reasonably priced textbooks.

As if this wasn’t enough to deal with, there are a number of students who are not only balancing their personal and school lives, but also an extra-curricular activity known as: television.

Allyson Harmon, a fourth-year communications student, is attempting to help students out with a new support club. The group aims to support students who have difficulty following their favourite TV shows while juggling school work.

“I believe that television programs are still the most effective distributors of worldly information to students. Keeping up with television is essential to keeping in touch with humanity all over the world,” said Harmon.

But many students are finding it difficult to keep in touch with humanity as well as they would like to.

“I am three episodes behind in Modern Family and I am really starting to panic,” said Guy LaBlanche, a second-year health sciences student.

“During lectures, I try to remember what happened in the last episode and I realize that I remember my previous lecture better than the previous episode. It’s really freaking me out,” he said.

LaBlanche is far from alone. According to recent Stats Canada tweets, one out of every three students has admitted to suffering from panic attacks because of an inability to watch their favourite shows.

“I have no idea who Hank Moody banged last week,” said Henry Jackson, a third-year law student, referring to David Duchovny’s promiscuous character on the Showtime series Californication.

Jackson said little else in his interview with the Fulcrum as he abruptly ran off and shoved two students out of his way, yelling he forgot that Workaholics had returned after a hiatus.

On an average day, approximately one quarter of all students in Morisset Library are delaying their studies in order to watch television shows on their laptops, many of them reportedly unresponsive and dismissive toward the outside world. There have even been instances of students turning violent upon being disturbed.

“In the fourth-floor study area, I went to go tell this guy to turn the volume on his laptop down, and he scowled at me and he tried to push me down a flight of stairs,” said Luigi Panciera, a first-year religious studies student.

“I don’t even know how I ended up in front of an open stairwell. I still don’t know where the stairs in the Morisset Library are,” he added.

Despite the alarming number of television-related injuries on campus, Harmon refuses to declare students’ TV-watching habits as an addiction.

“Television creates popular culture, which creates stimulating conversations and in turn leads to the strengthening of friendships. To give a negative connotation like ‘addiction’ to a positive thing like that is absurd,” said Harmon.

“I firmly believe that people bonding over discussions of their favourite books is no different than when they reminisce about the time Judge Judy ended that one case in less than two minutes. That was insane.”

Harmon’s meetings will continue twice a month just before prime time. The meetings are held on campus, and can be found wherever you hear America’s Next Top Model blaring loudly.