Monday, July 23, 2007
There's too much on TV right now. Not since the days of Mail Call and Extreme History have I had so many options.
My new favorite show is Ice Road Truckers on The History Channel. These crazy truck drivers drive their rigs hundreds of miles across frozen lakes near the Arctic Circle in Canada. Most of this travel is mining related so they carry some big loads. Did I mention that they haul this tonage over ice? That the road is basically a lake that froze over? That the road is only made out of water? And that they show footage of cracks in the ice that move back and forth as the trucks move across it?
Last night one of the young guys on the show was hauling a 95,000 pound piece of equipment across the ice. When he got it to the mine, two trailers were froze together in the -40 below temps. The back trailer was covered in ice. He hadn't slept for 24 hours. It took a few hours to finally get them apart. He was a little tired.
Another trucker, who is not one of the show's 'regulars', had part of his rig fall slightly through the ice. Fortunately, they were able to pick him out before he fell completely through.
This stuff is fascinating because it is extreme. And because you don't even realize these people exist and live these kinds of lives until a show like this comes along.
One other thing I learned- these guys are all one wave short of a shipwreck. But that probably goes without saying.
If this weren't bad enough, I fear I'm hooked on another History Channel program that came on last night after Ice Road Truckers.
This one is called Human Weapon. It's about two guys who travel the world to learn all they can about martial arts. Last night it was Thailand and the deadly Thai martial art of Muay Thai. They spend time at different academies in Thailand learning different strikes. Last night they even went to some Buddhist monkey temple! I can't wait to see what happens.
There's also a new program I've only seen once called Cities of the Underworld. Basically a guy who travels the world going through catacombs and sewers of famous cities. The episode I saw was of underground Paris. There were some tight quarters getting beneath the city, so that if you get caught or stuck going through a passage, you're dead. Trust me, if you're claustrophobic, you won't enjoy watching this.
But once he's down there, it's fascinating. It's of course dark, but when lit up, you'll see things like paintings and other art down there. It's like another universe. And the history between the Nazis and French underground was cool to learn about also.
To top it all off, and on a gentler note, last night also meant the beginning of HGTV's new season of Design Star. Last year's season was great, with just enough argumentiveness and artistry in the competitors to hold my attention. Last night they picked the candidates for this year's show.
There are already a couple of kook picks that will be weeded out quickly. I don't know why they do this.
What am I to do with so many selections? The problem is it all starts late on Sundays at 9 p.m. Central. And to make matters worse, my radio drama comes on at 10 p.m.
Thank God for DVR!