It all started with an innocent conversation
My wife and I came off a five day vacation on the coast, where we spent the
week on the beach or reading on the screen porch of a house we had rented from
some friends of ours. Upon our return, I commented to a co-worker that one of
the reasons that we have been given to return to work was that there is
absolutely nothing of value on television during the day. I mentioned that
even PBS was filled with school programming. This started a conversation about
high-definition television, which my co-workier is a huge fan of. He expounded
on the virtues of the picture and sound quality and told me that I HAD to get
an HDTV. I informed him that my fifteen year old Sony worked perfectly well
and I couldn't see my way clear to spending money on something when I had one
that worked fine. Little did I realize that I was about to experience the
full force and irony of foreshadowing.
The next weekend, my television died.
So now my wife and I have a problem. We have to replace our TV. We go to the
local electronics ubermart and wander through the television section, beating
back the vultures as we try and make a semi-informed decision about buying a
set. It seems that since the last time I let myself off my self-imposed chain that
keeps me out of these stores, that technology has really gone off the charts.
There is not only HDTV but also flat panel, flat screens, and televisions that
are so big that they have their own representation in Congress.
We debated and talked and researched and talked and debated and watched about as
much of a Sheryl Crow video as one man should be made to in one lifetime, while we
tried to decided how much we wanted to spend and what features we wanted. I come
from a very deliberate family and we don't rush into things. Risk takers we are
not and my wife runs along the same line, so we are cautious to the point of
being paralyzed. And we would probably be still in the same boat if it were not
for my boss.
A couple of weeks ago, I passed the milestone of being an employee of this firm for
seven years. As a gift for my seventh anniversary, my boss offered to foot the
bill for a new TV. A wonderful gesture on his part and it bought him and the
company a great deal of good will. We discussed what he was talking about when
he said that, and he put the kabosh on a flat panel, but was perfectly willing
to buy an HDTV.
So, yesterday, we bought a TV. Actually let me rephrase that: yesterday, we
bought a 218 pound monstrosity that is sitting in my living room. It is a 32
inch Sony with HDTV capability and about enough features to fly the Space Shuttle.
I think my wife is in shock and I know at least one of our cats got frightened by
the sheer size of the image. I am secretly very pleased with the purchase knowing
that I will be able to watch Farscape tonight in what will feel like life size,
but I have to keep up the penitent act until my family adjusts.
Ah, technology! Ain't it wonderful?