One of the benefits of working at home is daytime television, like one of the benefits of being a plumber is all the free compost. Remember when it started? The compost, I mean? It was in the 90s. The king of daytime talk was Phil Donahue, whose show in the beginning could seem salacious but actually was thoughtful and measured compared with his usurpers racing to find the lowest common denominator of public taste and intelligence. (Judging by their spawn, “reality TV,” it hasn’t been found yet.) Along came Geraldo Rivera and Jerry Springer and Oprah Winfrey, and the mud-rasslin’ was in full swing. Of course, today it all seems tame, but mercifully we didn’t know that then. Phil tried to resist the trend but was powerless really. He eventually eased into the mud with the others, then quit. Oprah took the opposite route; she started in the mire and over time pulled herself and her show to higher ground. As for Geraldo and Jerry Springer, oh my. I honestly don’t know what they’re doing now and don’t care. Enough of a very old rant. At least I got a cartoon out of it.