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Ok so it is gone 5 in the morning and guess who can’t sleep?  Yep you guessed it!

Once again I find that my sleep is unsettled and broken.  For the record I did actually go to bed early and indeed did manage to sleep (albeit restlessly) for a couple of hours and then I woke up.  Just to add to the fun I then went to remove my breathing mask ( I have to use a CPAP machine when I sleep) and the mask broke in my hands.  About a foot and half of sticky tape later and it is just about useable but I am somewhat frustrated about it to say the least.  So I need to vent a little…

So I am awake and laying there and I zap the television to life with the remote control and start deftly navigating my way through the channels in search of something bearable to watch.

Saint’s preserve us there is a heck of a lot of dross on television early in the morning!!  If I didn’t have mental health issues before I started watching twilight television I sure as heck would have by the end of it I reckon. It really is just an endless stream of tele-commercials and ‘Reality Television’

Now whilst I am certain that I gave the tele-commercial’s sugary sweet announcer’s earnest suggestion that my life, romance and appeal would be greatly improved by my purchasing the latest no wire one size fits all push up bra, I decided not to reach for credit card and phone!

hm, does this colour look good on me?

My man boobs are anything but perky and trust me one size fits all in my case just doesn’t work.  It would be like trying to force two sacks of jelly into a couple of ice-cream cones.  Just not gonna happen.

Which sad realization led me to the world of Television Reality Shows!  Heavens above they are weird and is it just me or do most Television Reality Shows lack (um what’s the word I am looking for here?  On yes that’s it) REALITY!

Now don’t get me wrong here, whilst I would be the first to admit that there is such a thing as good reality television I have to say that most of it is, in my humble opinion,  just car-crash television.  But what is worse is that it is often just a vehicle through which unscrupulous money-orientated television production companies prey on the less fortunate in life in order to make mega bucks and in the process use the tragedies and/or sometimes seemingly desperate need for attention or recognition of folk who need very real help to do so.

And I think that is the thing that concerns me the most in all this.

Those folk who desperately do need help and who really should not be allowed or encouraged to let themselves be paraded like performing seals just for the entertainment of the masses.  Let’s be honest here.  There are folk who crave attention in order to ‘achieve’ or to feel that they have ‘made it’ or that they have some worth in life.

The fact is that they already have worth and (at the risk of sounding like a grumpy old git) isn’t it a sad indictment of society and the values we hold if we are producing a culture where this kind of attention seeking is to be valued?

As someone who loves music and singing I consider myself to have a fairly good voice and at least a limited amount of talent when it comes to singing.  My love of music and singing has meant that of the plethora of mindless dross of reality TV that is out there I have and do sometimes watch television talent shows such as Pop Idol, X Factor, The Voice of Ireland (possibly one of the better ones), and America’s (or Britain’s) Got Talent.

I admit it.  Some of them I actually enjoy watching.  But what I don’t enjoy (and I have to say I haven’t seen this happening on The Voice of Ireland) is when they show folk who clearly can’t sing or clearly don’t have the talent they thought they had and do so in a way that is demeaning or ridiculing or embarrassing for the person concerned just because it allegedly ‘makes for good TV’ .

We have to be careful here don’t we?

As someone who suffers from poor mental health I know that one of the symptoms of my mental health is altered perceptions.  Sometimes I perceive things incorrectly.  I know it, admit it and I trust on those who care for me and who love me to let me know when I am going through some wrong thinking.  [Hey I just sat and photo-shopped a picture of me to make it look like I am wearing a bra and then I published it on the internet – how’s that for  wrong thinking? lol]

But seriously, where is the moral compass when it comes to what will or won’t be shown on the so-called ‘reality television shows’?  Well I guess the plain simple truth is that if the producers and commissioners of such programs won’t use one then we have to be that moral compass and use the power of the ‘ratings’ and the ‘remote control’.

Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) are very serious life-impacting conditions and I do not in any way mean to disrespect them or make fun of them through this article.

If anyone is offended by my using these terms in connection with the ever popular so-called ‘reality TV’ that is pumped through our televisions and the seemingly ever-increasing desire for ‘fame at any cost’, then I apologize and I hope that regular readers will know me by now and know that I mean no disrespect here.

But I think the point I am making through using this term is still valid and relevant.  At a time when censoring and such things as SOPA and PIPA and the even more outrageous and deeply dangerous and concerning ACTA are very relevant I am not talking of censoring for the sake of censoring here.  But what I am talking about is a very real need for good old common sense, decency, and mutual respect.