Whether your, ahem, less-than-productive times last all day long or are more fleeting, there are a myriad of ways that you can waste time and satisfy your media jones with the help of the Web.
One of my favorite media sites is TV Land (at, you guessed it, http://www.nick-at-nite.com). If you don't have cable television, let me fill you in. TV Land is a station dedicated to showing classic programs -- Bewitched, Love American Style, That Girl, and other good stuff. The TV Land web site serves up television trivia (who was the voice of Mister Ed?), games (what would it be like to find a beautiful blonde genie of your very own?), and the amazing "TV Land Salute To Cereal". A whole lot of fun.
Of course, there are other choices for other tastes. MTV and HBO have their own mega-Web sites, and the E! cable channel has its own too. (http://www.eonline.com) It's a great source for popular entertainment news and reviews, covering all the "traditional" media: radio, CDs, TV, books, magazines, and movies old and new. Gossip columns give you a quick take on the happening celebrities, and discussion boards make it possible to share gossip and brushes with the rich and famous. Naturally, there's broadcast schedule for E!'s cable offerings.
The success of MTV's program "The Real World" showed everyone that people are interested in the intimate lives of total strangers, at least if the strangers are young, relatively attractive, and fight with each other. It was only a matter of time before the formula appeared on the World Wide Web. The Spot (http://www.thespot.com) was the first and arguably still the best of the sites that follow the daily trials and tribulations of a group of young people living together. You can read the daily entries in each resident's journal. Even the dog (a "Cyberian husky") occasionally has something to say.
Speaking of MTV, Adam Curry was a VJ on MTV when he created his first Web site. It was called mtv.com and was one of the most popular sites on the Net. When he left MTV a few months later, there were legal problems with his continuing to use the name. When the smoke cleared, MTV had mtv.com, and Adam started metaverse (http://www.metaverse.com). Not a bad trade-off, really. Divided into categories called Sights, Sounds, Sleaze, and Surf, you can spend hours on this beautifully designed site reading about television and music. You'll find opinions, reviews and concert information here too.
If your preferred weapon for tuning out the world is the CD player, check out the Ultimate Band List (http://ubl.com). Named appropriately, this site offers a huge compilation of information and resources on a wide variety of bands. You can browse the band data by musical genre, online resources, and latest additions to the database--or you can simply run a keyword search. In addition, you can get detailed information on radio stations, record labels, clubs, concerts, record stores, music news, community forums, entertainment events, music-oriented periodicals, and top music charts.
Finally, Internet Underground Music Archive (http://www.iuma.com) is famous for being the "first free hi-fi music archive" on the Net and it has earned a reputation for being one of the most reliable and comprehensive sources of independent and experimental music and information sources online. From IUMA you can find information on new bands playing a variety of musical styles, music Webzines and events.
Take it from me, those sites should keep you from getting anything useful done for a while.
=*=*= SITES MENTIONED IN THIS ISSUE =*=*=
TV Land: http://www.nick-at-nite.com/
The Spot: http://www.thespot.com
Ultimate Band List: http://ubl.com
Internet Underground Music Archive: http://www.iuma.com