You can see anything you might ever want to see on TV. Tremendous stuff. That wasn’t always the case.
In fact, there was a time, children, when houses were barely big enough to keep a nuclear family of four penned in. Darkness was on the face of the living room and there was nothing but tiny furniture and a singularity and then suddenly BANG there was a gigantic box squatting in the corner. There would be a little screen in the middle like a bloop of jelly on a big Danish and everyone would crowd around it like it was a campfire, with the littlest kid right up front at eye-ruining distance to change the channels and wiggle the rabbit-ears on request.
Ed Sullivan and Groucho Marx lived in the box, but It was early in the TV universe and there was only one real star that faded out every night. There were some good shows and a whole lot of bad shows but we all thought things were going to brighten up considerably when cable TV came in.
The way I remember it, we would go from three stodgy broadcast channels with cigarette ads to ten thousand channels and no commercials. I don’t know what happened. There were gobs of ads. Everyone was so surprised. And the Marlboro man was gone but suddenly there was no end of drugs you should ask your doctor about in case they were right for you. AND, there were only about sixty channels and 58 of them were total crap: My Mother The Car marathons and such. It was all a terrible disappointment but most people didn’t mention it because they had so much invested in cable TV being awesome. Nobody wants to be played for a fool.
Now, though, one way or another, there really is a lot of cool stuff on TV. All sorts of outfits will funnel you truly good movies and well-written series. Not for free though. And Dave and I don’t get to see any of it. Somewhere along the line our internet company quit sending us what we were used to and offered us Directv instead. It cost $141 a month and yes, $141 isn’t as much money as it used to be, but it’s way too much for NCIS reruns and Family Feud. Although, that Steve Harvey! He’s a hoot! He ain’t a $141 hoot though.
I was aware that this isn’t how most people watch TV anymore. Instead they have weird little interventionist devices that suck good content out of space and onto your screen. There are five hundred different streaming services, and, as in all cases involving excessive choice, I simply did not know what to do.
So we bumbled along with our expensive crappy service plus Netflix, and then our TV, which is by far the largest TV we’ve ever owned and was given to us by our nephew when he got a bigger one, quit getting Netflix. Netflix warned us. “Your device will no longer support us two weeks from now,” it said, like our TV was a deadbeat dad or something, and so I canceled my subscription, although I was then two days into the next payment cycle, so I still had Ghost Netflix for another month. Plus NCIS reruns and Family Feud.
For $157. It was not ideal. We needed help. We needed Ted Lasso, according to everybody in the world. We needed the Daves.
To be continued.