My poor old TV has been on its last legs for a while now. A low humming followed by a high pitched "ZAP!" greets you as you turn it on, and then wavy grey lines dance across it for a while as it gets ready to entertain you. The image waves from side to side as if caught in a stiff breeze, which is only really annoying if you're trying to read anything on it. Or if there's a closeup of a face. Or ... okay, it's always annoying. But for some reason, I felt strangely loyal to it.
About a year ago, before it got quite so bad, my husband tried to introduce a new TV into the house. He brought it home without telling me and set it up while I was in the bath. I almost went into shock. "So how much was it?" I asked. He mumbled something that I couldn't hear, looking like a kid who'd snuck an extra cookie before dinner.
I crossed my arms and watched him unhooking our poor old (still functioning perfectly well at the time. After the first 10 minutes or so, anyway.) TV, as if taking it off life support, and lifting this shiny sleek thing up in it's place. After he got it all hooked up, he stood back and surveyed it proudly, "alright, let's see how it looks!" It looked like crap. The blacks weren't true blacks and every channel was grainy. There was some issue with the sound and apparently it wasn't compatible with the something or other.
I probably would have been much less belligerent if he hadn't chosen to do it on my TV night. You know, that night when there's about two hours of television programming that you actually want to watch? So anyway, I said something about at least our TV still works and we've just saved ourselves some money. The shiny TV went back to the store and was not spoken of again.
Until recently, when even I've had to admit that our TV was just not working anymore. I'm not against new technology, per se, but I am against replacing something every time something shinier comes along. Even I can't argue with replacing something that's just not working anymore. Especially when I sometimes need a half hour of Dora (or some less annoying show if I'm lucky) to entertain my children while I regain my sanity.
Apparently, my extended family has also been noticing that my TV is a piece of crap, because for my birthday/Christmas/next-birthday-too present, they got me a shiny, new, flat screen TV. (Thank you!) It's got all kinds of fancy numbers and abbreviations on it, so it's got to be good, right? They brought it over this weekend, and after I made my husband double check that he'd got all the cables he needed to make the thing work, I let him set it up.
It's so light. It takes up so much less space. I can actually get behind it to dust. And there's no power button on the front that the kids can use. And best of all, it works. He tested all the peripherals, and everything works. It's awesome. Not a wavy line to be found.
*The old TV was a 10 year old giant, hulking, grey box. I'm picturing it right now; sitting in front of the Goodwill drop off, in the rain, with that voice from the Ikea commercial in my head. "Many of you feel bad for this TV, that is because you are crazy."