***Another Traveller Series” is a journal of my 3 months’ stay in Taipei. I write because I want to memorise. I write therefore I am.***
I usually switch on the television when I come back after work. I don’t mean to binge on any dramas but to make some sound.
Sound, indeed, not noise. There are few dozen channels – good enough to occupy 10 minutes for one loop. Hence I pin down a few categories and memorise the channel numbers: 20-odd for Discovery-type documentaries and travelogues, 50-odd for 6 to 8 local news, before 75 for sports and after 75 for movies.
Days gone by, I don’t know when a movie begins and I don’t like to watch it in the middle. Discovery-type documentaries makes me feel familiar as I also watch these programs in Hong Kong; however, except commercial breaks, these channels disconnect with this place. News would be a better choice to get to know current happenings, but a single headline would last for 15 minutes. It’s like an in depth feature story! I have never succeeded in watching more than 3 headlines. Don’t ever switch to the next news channel, or I have to sit through the same story in details again. The prime news with international news should be around 6-ish but I am not yet home. Some news are quite trivial like a fast food chain serves burger with pineapple in summer and a snack store owner proved Robin Williams’s last September visit to Taiwan. (Are they paid content?) I have been told that the press in Taiwan is notorious for non-nutrient content and I know why.
By elimination, it leaves me with sports channel. Basketball game William Jones Cup (I just heard about this game in Taiwan) is just finished. So by far my favourite programme is the professional baseball league. It is the league season and it broadcasts live in the evenings. From the cheering crowd and the commentators, I feel connected to this land and people even though I am not familiar with the scoring. But it’s funny enough for me to anticipate the hand sign by referees and infer the rules. I enjoy this guessing process instead of googling and youtubing. The best part of it is the pacing of the game – the cameras always pan to spectators, cheering teams, players in dugouts, batters swinging, pitchers and catchers’ body signs, etc. Only 10% of the time is in full action that players pitch, hit, catch, run. For the rest of the time, I multi-task on my laptop. Replays can just serve my miss. Unlike the news, the baseball games just offer some sound I needed but are not at all noisy.
On this land, I like this game.
CPBL website: http://www.cpbl.com.tw/