Where does the time go? Â My apologies for recently being rather more absent than present. Â I had a bit of a domestic crisis that demanded my attention, at first because there were things that had to be done to restore order, and then because there was something shiny and it was difficult to look away. Â I realize that was fairly cryptic; I shall elaborate.
Our TV blew up. Â Not literallyâ€”there were no sparks, or in fact anything dramatic. Â I suppose it would be more accurate to say that it gave up. Â It was a ProScan 27â€ tube TV, fantastic in its day and it had served long and well. Â But it was old and tired and ready to make its way to the clearing at the end of the path. Â There were signsâ€”it had been flickering a bit for a while, and some noticeable geometric distortion had crept in. Â Oh, and once or twice it dropped into black-and-white mode, as if it simply couldnâ€™t muster up the energy to do color. Â All this said loudly and clearly that an internal power supply or some such was just about done. Â Finally last week, it just quit one night, about 10 minutes from the end of Top Chef. Â Ouch!
Now, plans had for some time been in the works for a Chez Darragh-Clancy home theater makeover. Â Some components had already been purchased and were simply waiting for someone to actually do something regarding installation. Â Clearly a catalyst was necessary; if you hadnâ€™t realized it before, I can be quite lazy and procrastinatory. Â In our house, a dead TV was all but apocalyptically bad. Â Top Chef! Â True Blood! Â Dr. Who! Â Oh noes!
By Sunday we were the proud owners of a spiff new Panasonic 42â€ LCD HD-TV. Â You know what? Â Standard definition DirecTV looks fairly like crap when itâ€™s blown up that big. Â So, by Tuesday we had upgraded to DirecTV HD and (cue the angel chorus) all was well. Â Except for the fact that BBC America HD is for some unfathomable reason not available from DirecTV. Â Dr. Who! Â Oh noes! Â I have already submitted my complaint/request and am anxiously awaiting a response, by which I mean the addition of BBC America to the channel lineup. Â Yes, DirecTV, Iâ€™m talking to you. Â Oh and also, isnâ€™t it cute how we still refer to them as â€œchannelsâ€? Â Anyway, the TV itself is very big and very shiny, and all that highly definitioned programming is also really very shiny, and Iâ€™ve found myself distracted. Â I think this weekend weâ€™ll be taking a whole evening for â€œThe Return of the Kingâ€ (the four-hour extended version), or maybe â€œOne from the Heart.â€
On a less tangential note, Iâ€™ve also been spending a inordinate amount of time trying to make my peace with Viewer 2.0, and so far I must say that We Are Not Amused. Â In fact, we are quite annoyed and frustrated. Â I think I feel a rant coming on. Â If I can get my thoughts together in anything approaching coherence, it may get posted here. Â Watch this space!