Eee gads! Been awhile since I updated this blog – I’m in jeopardy of losing my credentials. I’m guessing that time has rushed by due to the rash of “crises” we’ve been encountering. It all started about 3 weeks ago with the failure of our wireless home phone system – OK, these things happen. Then we replaced Sandee’s computer, always a traumatic occasion – that was followed by the death of our microwave, easily 10+ years old, but otherwise doing fine. And in the middle of all that, we decided that it was time to ditch Dish Network because of their reluctance to come to a satisfactory agreement with Fisher Broadcasting to supply CBS as one of our local stations (this has gone on for some 4 months now). I’m sorry, but no CBS is unacceptable – kind’a like your grocery suddenly not selling apples anymore!
Now, I think most of you will recognize these as critical needs – it’s like, if you never had them, you can easily do without them – but once you get used to them, you can’t function without them! So, after many years of happy and ignorant bliss, we’re now living through a series of mini-crises. Into this environment comes the DirecTV installer, and announces that he can’t do his work unless we pull all our equipment out of our entertainment center! Now, this took me many months of agony and sweat – I’m not a tech wizard – to get it working and set up. All I could think of was, Oh god, this is not something I want to do! But I did, and for the sake of time, I didn’t even take notes on the connections.
Well, the DirecTV installer did his thing, and he even took pity on me – I’m guessing it was the sniveling and quiet sobs – and hooked up my DVD to the TV before he left. But in my weakened state, I failed to try it out with a test cd. Only later did I realize that he had not been completely successful in his efforts. However, not being of sound mental state, I postponed any thought of fixing it to a future date, and sat down to begin my new life with Direct.
I really just forgot about it for the next several days, but one night we decided to watch one of our Netflix, and I popped the DVD into the machine and … nothing! Oh yeah … let’s see, it must be the connections on the rear of the TV – let me just twist this baby around a little, so I can see what’s happening back there ….
Now, before I go any further, you need to know something about this TV – about 8 years ago now, we decided that our stock of old TVs needed updating, and we began looking around. Honestly, I can’t even remember what different choices we had – I think this was true because we simply were not going to pay $3,000 for a TV, and that really limited what you could choose from. I don’t remember thinking that the days of CRT(cathode ray tube) TVs were coming to an end, but now of course I realize that was true. So we looked, and looked, and looked some more – finally we found something we could afford ($600) and it was 36” – Whoa! 36”! That seemed simply outrageously huge. We were so excited about this TV that we paid no attention at all to its size – until we went to pick it up.
Today, if you bought a 36” wide-screen TV, it may weigh maybe 25 or 30 lbs. But that old 36” CRT set must have weighed in at 250+ lbs! At the store, I watched as two robust, young guys struggled to get that monster out of its box and up into the truck I had borrowed to get it home. I started to worry. One of the guys said, “You got somebody to help you with this when you get home?” “Not really”, was all I could answer.
The damn thing almost didn’t fit into the rear of the truck (it had one of those camper tops), and my worrying got worse and worse as I got closer to home. I pulled into our driveway, and went to get Sandee. “We can’t move that!”, were her first words. “So, you want me to take it back?”, I replied.
As I remember, I got a good sized piece of excess carpeting from the garage, and with much trepidation, we carefully, but quickly, lowered the behemoth to the carpet on the ground – then we took a much needed rest, marveling all the time on how we did what we just did without smashing the TV to tiny pieces.
Over the next hour, we gingerly pushed, pulled, and walked that set over the ground, up onto our deck, through the front door, and across the floor to the spot where this TV would spend the next 8 years of its life – only one problem – it now had to be lifted up four feet onto a shelf! Another rest was needed, while we sat there marveling anew at how we had brought this thing this far, and fearing that, without increased manpower, it would remain just where it was for some time to come!
To this day, I’ll never believe that we somehow got that thing up in the air that four feet, and onto that shelf. But we did – and I can recall thinking, “Whoa … that baby stays there forever!” I think it was somehow impossible for me to consider the potential way that that set would eventually leave its happy home of eight years, but …. You know of course what I’m about to tell you – it was like one of those times in your life when reality stands still, but you know in a flash that it’s over. I stood there, frozen, and watched that monster set slowly tip and slowly slide right off the front of that shelf, and drop, top first, onto the floor. I know I felt the house shudder!
As I think back on the experience, I’m rather proud of myself – I didn’t freak out – I didn’t go into a tizzy – I simply continued to stand there frozen. I think it’s nature’s way of protecting us from emotional trauma. Although, from another perspective, if I were living some 150,000 years ago, and suffered this same trauma, I’d probably be dead. Actually, I think what really happened – unconsciously – was that some part of me really didn’t want to continue watching TV on that old standard definition set, and so it was rather easy for me to accept its demise. Yeah, that’s much more likely, although I am just a little saddened by the way it died.
It’s been the better part of a week now, and I’ve done all my requisite research, and all the time wasting “fits and starts” that accompany same – and as we sit here, we wait for our new replacement TV to arrive, a 42” wide-screen HDTV, which will, I’m quite sure, introduce us to a new level of necessary technological innovation quite like our microwave, and our computers, and our wireless whatevers too. I think part of growing old is that part of you hates to see this happen, even fights it at times – but then, part of you is cheering and celebrating just as hard.
Any ideas on how we get rid of this relic?