Thursday, May 22, 2008

Sunrise Earth

I have to admit that there is a little bit of the pyromaniac in me, at least in so far as it concerns watching fires, and especially volcanic eruptions and the flow of lava. I once told a friend that if there were a subscription channel that showed nothing but flowing lava for 24 hours a day without commentary (and preferably no sound whatsoever, except for the occasional hiss or splutter) I'd gladly pay the premium.

So far as I know, the Lava Channel does not yet exist. (I'm sure it will if we get nationwide door-to-door fiber optic before we get sharia or the next smallpox pandemic.) But there is a very life-positive channel called Animal Planet that comes with most basic pay-television packages. And while they don't yet offer the Lava Hour, they do have a delightfully pastoral hour-length series called Sunrise Earth. It currently runs weekdays at 7am Eastern. There are commercials interruptions. But there is no voice-over during the program itself. No soporific PBS style announcer droning on and on about how the death of the calf to feed the wolf is nature's way. And no dire warnings about how human encroachment is yadda yadda yadda... Just the babble of brooks, the sighing of the wind in the trees, and the occasional chatter of a bird. What a blessing!

The show is available on the regular channel or in high definition. I record it on my DVR and play it back at night as I type. If you have a widescreen TV you might try watching it with your coffee in the morning rather than the insincere treacle you'll get on one of the morning shows on the major networks. Just press the mute button your remote when the commercials come on. The series is apparently also available at the Discovery Store in various DVD editions.

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