Thursday, January 31, 2008

My parent's new TV.

Now before I start, I know that there's some of you that have already heard/read this story elsewhere... so just read it again and like it while all the rest read it for the first time. The reason that I'm telling this again at all is... there's a new turn of events because of it. So, it's lengthy, but if you've got aging parents I think you'll enjoy it.

This whole thing took place a few days before Christmas 07.


My folk's watch a lot of television and had, until a few days before Christmas, a giant of a television. About 7 or 8 years ago Dad bought a monstrous rear projection television, the complete focal point of their living room, mind you it's a huge living room, but still. We used to joke that if they'd just turn the thing around we could see what they were watching from our house. We live 10 miles south of them. Anyway about a couple months ago Sally and I were over there and the picture was all hinky on their TV.

Me: "What's wrong with your television?"

Mom: "Nothing, why?"

Dad: (A little panicked) "What do you mean what's wrong with the television?"

Sally: "It's got double images that are blue"

Mom: "I don't see anything wrong"

Dad: (on the edge of his recliner now)"I think I see 'em."

Mom: "What are you all talking about?"

Me: "Your picture is all screwy, everything is in doubles only blue"

Dad: "It's gone now"

Sally: "No it's not."

And so on and so on... this continued until I said "I'm wrong, it looks good to me" and then I'm sure we talked about medicine or gas prices or how to cook deer meat. (which my Dad can go on about for like a half hour at a time, complete with hand gestures of applying salt, pepper and turning the meat in the skillet.)

The next Thursday morning the phone rings at the crack of dawn.

Dad "You need to come up here this morning, I want you to look at the television."

Me "Okay... it'll be a little later this afternoon"

Dad "What time?" (cause he wants it nailed down to an exact time so as not to interfere with one of his naps)

Me "When you see me"

So I go up later on and Dad leads me to the TV..... 'cause I can't find that monstrosity by myself, they move it around all the dang time just to surprise me when I come over.

I mess around with the thing for awhile trying to decide what's haywire. I ask Mom if she's got a pre-recorded Video somewhere in the mess.

Mom "What do you mean pre-recorded?"

Me "Like store bought, Mom. A tape with a movie already on it"

Mom "I haven't got a clue"

Me "Who would? Is there someone I could call?"

NOTE: Sarcasm flows heavily in my family

Mom toddles over to the bookcase by the TV and pulls out a VHS of First Knight and hands it to me.

Mom "I have no clue where this came from... I've never watched it. It's just always been there."

Me "We got it for you for Christmas once."

Mom "Oh, maybe I'll watch it someday"

Me "Now?"

Mom "No."

So I put the tape in and that eliminated the last thing.

Me "Okay guys, your TV is shot. Time for a new one"

Dad "What'll you give me for the old one?

Me "I wouldn't give you 2 cents for it."

Dad "I paid $2300 for that television"

Me "I bought a new truck in '78 for $7200. The Price is Right is over."

The next things that happened add to the entertainment of that day. My Dad wants me to look at one of the heaters (they have baseboard electric heat in their home) in the living room. I pull the cover off and check it with a meter. It's junk and needs replaced. Dad cusses and says... "Okay I want you to look at the woodstove in the basement and see what's wrong with it" I look at it and it's all juiced up with creosote. I tell Dad that he bought the real wrong wood stove for the way he likes to use em, he likes to have little 2 hour fires and nothing ever really gets hot. Dad cusses some more says "Well that one's for sale, I'll take $600 for it and I just paid $1300 for it last year" Then he says "The carbon monoxide detector needs a battery in it cause it's going Beep (long pause) Beep (long pause) Beep. I tell him to go get a new one cause it ain't got a battery, the module is going dead in it. Dad cusses some more.

Dad "You need to go back home now"

Me "You're the one that wanted me to come up here and look at your stuff"

Dad "I know, but all my stuff is broken and all you're doing is telling me it's broken"

Me "Sorry. I didn't break it. Maybe Mom did it."

Dad "Go get me a new TV, I'll pay you for it. Just get the biggest one."

Me "10-4!"

I love shopping for expensive things on other peoples money.

Fast forward to me dragging in a 47" Phillips flat screen monster TV. I get the thing all set up and trying to hook up the ultimate in technology to an antiquated VCR, satelite and misc other TV crapola, and having just one hell of a time getting it all figured out. Meanwhile this is going on behind me.

Dad (in his recliner with 3 remote controls on his lap waiting for new TV glory to come) "Okay so this new remote is blah blah blah and the old one done this like blah blah blah and I don't know what this one is for. Shirley, do you know what blah blah blah?"

Mom (who is laying on the couch watching me and carrying on her own conversation) "Jace blah blah blah and blah blah blah and Christmas and blah and television and blah blah blah and VCR and my program blah blah blah"

Me (disparately trying to think)" Mom, you need to be quiet for a little bit"

Mom "Well, when can I talk again?"

Me "When you see me put my coat back on to leave"

Dad "SEE SHIRLEY? I told you so"

I don't know what that meant but it cracked me up.

Mom "I want to talk now"

Me (just staring at the television but not really seeing it at this point)

It was then that God pushed a button on the remote control I had in my hand and the VCR came to life on the television.

Dad "I'll be damned! There comes another snowstorm out of the west for tonite!"

Mom "I'm tired of snow"

Me "Dad, Mom... that's the weather that you taped for some reason the other nite. It's playing on the VCR."

Mom "Giggles"

Dad "Well I was gonna say......"

In the end, their new TV works, they can make it do what it's supposed to do and currently there's not another damned snow coming out of the west.

Oh and they made me Oatmeal Raisin cookies too!


More to come later.


Anonymous said...

One of the things that makes this so hysterical is that we know yer folks and their home and can "hear" their voices in the telling.....and yours.....LOL! Does part II have anything to do w/strokes?

Cowguy said...

LOL possibly....

WowsRose said...

A stroke and sugar!

ok that sounds all wrong

Vicky said...

ROFLOL. Even though I've heard this story before, it's even more funny in the re-reading! I think our Moms must have been related! ILY

zizzybob said...

Hey, what are your doing with MY parents?

Jerry said...

BTDT. Thank GOD they don't have cable or satellite. Just the OTAs ("Now why would we need anything else?")

Just as well. Dad got tachycardic and Mom wore out "Oh my gosh!" when we showed 'em Best Little Whore House in Texas". Can't imagine what would happen if they ran across Nine and 1/2 Weeks or some such thing. :)