Friday, January 25, 2008

The Eastpointer

No More TV!

By Richard E. Noble

I’ve seen the 45 vinyl records come and go, and then the LP. After that I watched the cassette tape flutter and die but I never thought that I’d live to see the TV set pass. But the TV is just about dead - at least in my house. That darn thing is shortly going into the junk pile or out the window. I’ve had it.
I remember going up to the new appliance store on a cobble stone street in my old neighborhood and helping my mother pick out our new 12 inch Zenith television. I had my Red Flyer Wagon we carted it home in. It cost 3 or 4 hundred dollars. I don’t know where my mother found the money, but we had to have that TV.
For weeks after I got it home, me and my sister jumped up every morning, ran into the parlor and watched the test pattern. Actually now that I think about it, the test pattern was about as good as many of the shows we have on the tube today.
In recent years they nicknamed it the “boob-tube” and it was certainly appropriate - even though there is no longer a ‘tube’ anywhere in the darn thing.
One of the biggest shows on today’s boob tube is called “Boobs with a View” I think. I can’t stand it! A bunch of women screaming and yelling at one another. But, if you change the channel you get a bunch of dopey men doing the same thing. It is beyond my capacity for tolerance. But that is not why the TV is coming to an end in my household. It is the cost of this foolishness.
I remember when I was a kid sitting up on the street corner, we used to talk about how one day they would trick us somehow into paying for this TV crap. We used to say; What are they going to do, put a coin collector on it like they have on the bus. We all laughed and concluded that it was impossible. BUT THEY HAVE DONE IT!
I can hardly believe it!
I think when it started out in this neighborhood it was about ten or twelve dollars a month for Cable TV. The picture was clearer than the old antennae and they were going to give us a bunch of new stations along with all the old stuff.
But gradually this Cable Company has gone the way of the automobile - if you want any “extras” it costs more. You know … did you want a bumper on that pickup truck? How about headlights?
What? What is this?
So now if I want sports, I pay extra; if I want local news, it’s extra, if I want movies, it’s extra. We don’t even get the Gillette Friday night fights anymore. What happened to boxing?
In any case, when the monthly charge got to 50 bucks, I told my wife, TV is over - find a new hobby. Learn to crotchet or make cute things out of plastic wrappers. I know that some of you people are paying a hundred dollars per month or more for TV. You people should be arrested and isolated somewhere on a farm in North Dakota. But my wife couldn’t do without the Boob Tube View. She begged and argued. We compromised. We canceled all the extras and went back to the basic. The basic was once again twelve dollars a month. Okay so what’s twelve dollars a month? I pay more than that for cat food. But as time slips by the “basic” keeps creeping up. I guess they think that I’m not going to notice - BUT I DO!
Last month I peeked at the bill and the basic was $27.68. This is ridiculous!
Do you know that Diane Sawyer makes something like 13 million dollars a year? Are you kidding me? And Katie what’s-her-name makes more than she does. And Barbara Wawa makes more than all of them in a bunch.
Man, I’ll bet I could get ten blonde Vassar graduates who could juggle in the nude and read the news at the same time for half that much money. And the men are just as bad. Bill O’Reilly makes a triple fortune. And all these Million Dollar Babies complain about the baseball players making too much money!
The weather guys are millionaires!
Do you remember when they first hired that big, chubby, white guy who made jokes and kept seeking out people who were older than dirt? The other network couldn’t be outdone so they hired a big, chubby, bald headed, BLACK guy who also told jokes. These guys are making millions.
I need million dollar entertainment with my weather? I don’t even need a weatherologist or whatever they call one of those guys. A simple “It’s going to rain or it will be warm today” is good enough for me. Find some unemployed teenager who doesn’t lisp and give him 500 bucks a week. He’ll never leave.
So okay you cable Mafiosi, when my bill for “basic” hits 30 bucks the TV is gone! And you TV people can take your new digital high definition and put it wherever you feel is appropriate. You say I will no longer know what is going on in the world today. I got news for you - I don’t know now what is going on in the world today even with all your help!
So Diane, you will have to take a two cent a year cut when I throw out my TV. I’m sorry; get a part time job. I hear Wal Mart is looking for cashiers.

Richard E. Noble is a Freelance Writer and has been a resident of Eastpoint for around thirty years now. He has authored two books: “A Summer with Charlie” which is currently listed on and “Hobo-ing America” which should be listed on Amazon in the not too distant future. Most recently he completed his first novel “Honor Thy Father and Thy Mother” which will be published soon.