"I love Lost. Sawyer is a man I tend to fashion my life after and Kate is going to have my children. I follow Lost pretty religiously." Thank you Scott Stevens for a look into your Tuesday night activities.
The idea of following a television show religiously nowadays is pretty common. Scott, in describing his dedication stated he religiously follows Lost. What would he say if I asked him, "What about Sacrament meeting, do you follow that religiously?"
Now lets listen to another friend of mine, ironically her name is Kate. "Oh. Freinds is my favorite show of all time.I followed it religiously and now I go back and watch them since I have the DVDs." Kate Todd is not alone. Sometimes we get so attached to our shows that we watch episodes that we have seen already just to remind us how much of an idiot Joey is, how mixed up Rachel and Ross are, how inept Phoebe is, and how unbelievable Chandler and Monica were (metaphorically speaking of TV as a whole and not just trying to call Friends out for basically rehashing Seinfeld without the humor).
What if I posed a similar question to Kate that I did to Scott, "Have you watched reruns of General Conference?" I don't want to condemn my friends. In fact, if I had to do a little investigatorial research on myself and my TV habits I would have to admit that I watch 30 Rock with a zealousness that would impress David Koresh. I watch General Conference religiously, but that doesn't mean I bought all the episodes on itunes...
Now I pose a couple of rhetorical question with hint of hyperbole, a trace of tongue in cheek, and a sprinkling of serious reflection. What do we mean when we say "I _______ religiously"? Do we really show as much dedication to certain things in the media as we do to our actual religions? I mean, we are told to avoid idolatry and we are often warned that the idols of today are not golden calfs. Does Scott go to the LDS church on Sunday and the church of Lost on Tuesdays?
Did I just blow your mind? While you regain consciousness from that last truth bomb I just dropped on you I want you to ponder one more thing. We go to church once a week and most television shows that people admittedly watch fairly "religiously" show only once a week. Is Sunday the Lord's day and Monday Jack Bauer's day? What does that mean? I'm not sure, I just thought it was interesting.
So, here are my questions to you: What media do you consume "religiously"? And what do you think this phrase means today, to do something "religiously"?