“How did you survive?”
“Don’t you miss it?”
“My husband won’t let me.”
“We won’t have what we want.”
“I don’t know what we would do without it.”
Let me be the first to tell you, you will survive. You might occasionally miss it. You will definitely survive. I’ll help you convince your husband. You’ll have what you want, and you’ll wish you did it sooner.
I’m talking about cable.
It seems like a silly thing to write about, but let’s be honest. I always write about silly stuff, and people keep asking us how it’s going. Besides, it’s summer for one more week. Indulge me.
I told y’all we dropped cable in January. We thought back on the previous month’s TV watching and, besides daytime TV, we’d watched things on Netflix, Amazon Prime and a few other channels. The hundreds of other channels were left sitting there, alone, collecting dust. Cancelling cable didn’t have to be permanent, but it felt like it. I love TV, but I love being without cable more.
First, buy an HD antenna for your TV. Most people don’t realize it, but you can get a dozen or so local channels for free. This’ll include all major networks (and the sports that come on them). There are a few variables, such as cost and reception range, but I’ll let you do the research. Amazon always has good ones on sale. I think we paid $25 for ours. It’s a one-time cost. No monthly fees.
Second, make sure you have a smart TV or a streaming device. We have The Kindle Fire Stick, but there are many options. Again, you do the research. The Kindle Fire stick was on sale for $35 when we got it. It’s a one-time cost, too. If you’re already watching Netflix on your TV, you should be all set.
Third, check out Sling TV. For $20-$40, you get live cable TV, via the aforementioned streaming device. Many channels offer their shows On Demand as well. Sports fans are freaking out about missing college football. Listen, I was too. I get it. Here is your answer. The regular Sling package gets you ESPN and ESPN2. There’s a college sports package you can add for $5 a month. Since Sling doesn’t operate on a contractual basis — as in, you aren’t locked in to any plan — you can add the sports package and take it away as needed.
Example: If Georgia is playing Florida on CBS, and you have the antenna I told you to get, you’ll be able to watch it, for free, without a cable box. If Georgia is playing the Tarheels on ESPN, you’ll be able to watch it as part of your regular Sling TV subscription via the Kindle Fire Stick that’s plugged in to the TV. If Georgia is playing Nicholls on the SEC Network, all you have to do is add the $5 extra on Sling TV, and you’ll have SECN and so much more. See? You’ve got this.
Fourth, unplug the dusty cable boxes and gather your remotes. It’s time to return them. When we took ours back to the cable company, the customer service lady didn’t argue with me. She just said, “So many people are doing this these days.” I had a tinge of guilt, because that’s just me, but not enough to hang on to the boxes. She confirmed our order for high speed internet only. Yep! I walked out the door at least 10 pounds lighter.
Finally, enjoy better TV. We only watch what we want to watch. I’m about $150 richer each month. Who can argue that?
Still not convinced? Give it a try. You’re not bound to anything. My biggest concern was that we wouldn’t be able to record shows when we were busy or not at home. Recording devices, modern day VCRs for you ‘80s kids, do exist, but we haven’t needed one yet. If we miss a show, GASP, we live.
I know, I know. I’m shocked, too. It felt good to cut the cord. I’m not complaining about my bigger wine budget, either.