By Andy Tarnoff Publisher Published Sep 08, 2007 at 9:58 AM

I'm pretty excited about the new fall TV season. But before you laugh at me for declaring that watching television is one of my favorite hobbies, please hear me out. As I understand it, a hobby is supposed to be a creative outlet that helps you relax, a diversion that takes your mind off the stress of the work week.

Thing is, my job requires me to be creative basically non-stop. Whether it's writing or Web design, application or business development, or even dealing with the human resource challenges of running a young and small company, I've got my hands full of creativity. If I get any more creative, my head might explode (note to self: refill Lunesta prescription).

For me, relaxation involves taking a break from creating. On a Thursday night, frankly, I'd rather tune on and turn out.

Read a book, you say. Again, I stare at words all day, crafting, editing, proofing and tweaking copy till the cows come home. Sometimes I just want the imagery to come to me.

With a few exceptions, I at least try to watch good TV. I stay abreast of the news that I've already read online throughout the day with commentary like "Countdown with Keith Olbermann" and "60 Minutes." I watch every Brewers game I can, and of course, the Packers, too. Other than "Best Week Ever" and "Pros vs. Joe's," I'm not terribly embarrassed with my playlist, though I realize there are good shows I'm not watching (but I have only so many hours I can devote to this high-brown hobby of mine).

And I'll be honest, staring at a 52" high definition screen makes it even easier to get sucked in to T.V. It's not my fault; I blame it on technology -- and my inability to say no to new gadgets.

So fine, television is not the most culturally enriching of all hobbies. Yes, I have other, more traditional leisure-time activities that I'll blog about at a later date. But here is what I watch every season, alphabetically, according to the "program manager" on my beloved DVR:

30 Rock
American Dad
Austin City Limits
Best Week Ever
Big Love
Curb Your Enthusiasm
Family Guy
Flight of the Conchords
It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia
Mexico With Rick Bayless
Pros vs. Joes (guilty pleasure)
Reno 911!
Saturday Night Live
The Office
The Sarah Silverman Program
The Showbiz Show With David Spade
The Simpsons

Recently canceled shows, still in DVR for posterity's sake:

Cheap Seats
Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip
John From Cincinnati

You may now return to your regularly scheduled judging of my taste in TV.


Andy is the president, publisher and founder of OnMilwaukee. He returned to Milwaukee in 1996 after living on the East Coast for nine years, where he wrote for The Dallas Morning News Washington Bureau and worked in the White House Office of Communications. He was also Associate Editor of The GW Hatchet, his college newspaper at The George Washington University.

Before launching in 1998 at age 23, he worked in public relations for two Milwaukee firms, most of the time daydreaming about starting his own publication.

Hobbies include running when he finds the time, fixing the rust on his '75 MGB, mowing the lawn at his cottage in the Northwoods, and making an annual pilgrimage to Phoenix for Brewers Spring Training.