Wednesday, January 4, 2012

T.V. Wars

When we were first married, I got a wild idea that watching television was a horrible waste of time.  (I believe this epiphany occurred during some episode of one of the soap operas I was hooked on.)  That day I unplugged the t.v., took a pair of wire cutters and clipped the cord in half.  It was a symbolic gesture, but the symbolism was lost on my husband who came home shortly thereafter with a larger, nicer television.  "Josh needs it to watch Sesame Street," he said.

Time goes by and eventually, I tried again.  I reasoned that if we had a smaller t.v. maybe we'd watch it less, so I traded the large color set with a friend who gave me a ten-inch black-and-white in return.   We were both thrilled with the exchange.  Jerry wasn't quite so excited about it when he got home that night.

Each time I've done something stupid like this, my husband has seen it as an opportunity to upgrade.  "Pee Wee's Play House doesn't look like as much fun in black-and-white." he said.  And, "You can't tell the Muppets apart without color. You know how much Jessica loves the Muppets."  Soon a new, improved t.v. would appear.

Eventually, we ended up with one of those monster consoles that were popular just before LED screens arrived on the scene.  It was the focal point of our living room.  By that time in our lives, even I rationalized that if our youngest had a good t.v., maybe she'd hang around our house watching it with her friends instead of going who-knows-where and doing who-knows-what.

Wrong!  We never broke down and got cable and so all Kate had to do to get a free pass out of our living room was fall in love with some series on HBO, which she did every season.  On the up side, if we had saved the money we didn't spend on cable, we could have bought our new car cash.  If.

When Kate's giant television went off with her to her first apartment, some friends gave us an old t.v. from their basement. We bought the $40 thingie for it when the government changed the signals, but we never took it out of its box.  By then we were watching mostly DVDs anyway. 

<em>Nintendo 64</em> Game consoleAround this time we also grew to love ("became addicted to" is probably more accurate) playing Tetris on our daughters' old Nintendo 64 which we rescued from the attic.  We played it a lot in the evenings until slowly it dawned upon us that you can't win Tetris.  All you can do is lose more slowly, if that makes sense.  Again, it would seem, I'd stumbled upon a giant time-waster. 

Now we watch movies and the occasional sporting event at our neighbor's house and that seems like enough.  A couple months ago, Jerry was cleaning out the basement and he donated our only television to Goodwill. 

It would appear that after thirty-five years, we are on the same team.  Yet every night when he comes home from work, I'm frightened by what I might find in his back seat.


Anonymous said...

Chris, this is so funny, because Andy was *just* telling me the story about you "cutting the cord" to the TV this past weekend. Luckily, he and I were on the same page when we went TV-free a few years ago. When the teenagers moved in, you'd have thought we'd cut off their legs, to hear their reactions. But low and behold, they found other things to do with their time!!


Anonymous said...

37 years.