I thought I would take some time to discuss my YouTube viewing habits in this entry since that’s how I’ve been falling asleep at night (which takes a long time due to my chronic insomnia). I used to ask my younger daughter how she could just watch YouTube videos on her tablet for hours on end. Well, now I know. What’s even worse, I will watch the exact same video over and over and over. Here is the commencement of my adventure.
I began with Britain’s Got Talent by watching the most advertised and seemingly popular acts like Susan Boyle, Connie Talbot, Paul Potts, Jonathan and Charlotte, Attraction, and Collabro, for starters. Audition, semi-final, final, and winner announced episodes. For each of them. Multiple times. Then—per YouTube’s handy recommendations—I found myself clicking and clicking and clicking. I’ve now seen every single one of amazing singer Connie Talbot’s music videos over the past nine years. I have viewed Jonathan and Charlotte’s exciting trip to Europe to perfect their sublime operatic vocals. I learned about Susan Boyle’s life. And, of course, I subscribed. How else would I know when they posted a new video?
Following Britain’s Got Talent, I turned my attention toward America’s Got Talent and X-Factor and was introduced to amazing performers like Carly Rose Sonenclar, Terry Fator, and Jackie Evancho. Additional recommendations led me to The Voice Kids (wow) and every other country’s Got Talent competitions. After my jaunt around the globe, I thought to myself, “OK, now what should we watch?” (I say “we” to appease the voices.)
I reflected upon this inquiry for quite a while. Actually, it only took me about 17 seconds to find thousands (literally, thousands) of random top ten lists such as “10 Mysterious Photos with a Horrifying Backstory”, “Top 10 Most Dangerous Sea Creatures”, “Top 10 Places You Shouldn’t Visit”, “Top 10 Dumbest Decisions in Horror Movies”,”Top 10 Worst NFL Plays”, “Top 10 Stupidest Lottery Winners”, “Top 10 Things you Should Never Google”, and “Top 10 Shocking Before and After Drug Use Photos”. I could go on, but, thankfully, I won’t.
Anyway, the recommendations kept coming. And coming. From top ten lists to serial killers to shocking parental punishments to magic tricks that went horribly wrong to cute baby animals. I had opened a Pandora’s Box, indeed.
Among my recently viewed videos are an Ellen interview with a three-year-old science prodigy, a documentary about pointe shoes, a collection of short horror films that freaked me out rather well, how to remove blood from your clothing, Torvill and Dean’s 1984 Olympics performance to “Bolero”, George Carlin at Carnegie Hall, about a dozen Steven Wright comedy performances, Michael Jackson singing “Ben” at the 45th Annual Academy Awards in 1973, 25 secrets Disney doesn’t want me to know, Kristen Bell singing “Do You Want to Build a Snowman” live at Frozen FANdemonium D23 Expo 2015, Ted Bundy’s final interview with James Dobson, 25 health benefits of organic cold-pressed coconut oil, and how to beat Candy Crush level 248.
I can’t wait to see what YouTube suggests for me tonight.