Any idiot can do it

April 20, 2013

We were notified by the cable company that all customers must have a box to receive the TV signal or your TV would go dead. I went down to the cable store to get the boxes we need, and she told me I would need a new modem also – a word which was not even in my vocabulary 20 years ago. She said any idiot could hook them up.

We brought the modem home and hooked it up, and the computer would no longer work. This means we didn’t have phone service either and the TVs wouldn’t work and the computer was dead.

I called around and found a geek who could come the next morning. Sure enough a boy arrived who looked like he was 14 years old, and his mother had to drive him, but he fixed the modem, and the computers were working again. However, now the printer would not print. I couldn’t fix it, but my wife discovered he had unplugged the printer, and when she plugged it in, now it worked.

And then we hooked up the box to the TV, and it didn’t work either. I spent 30 minutes on the phone talking to some nice lady in New Jersey or New Mexico or New Delhi, and she couldn’t fix it so the next day they sent a nice young man out to fix the TV. He could not get it to work either but discovered through a phone call they had not activated the new connection boxes. When he got that fixed, he hooked up the one TV, and it works now except that I don’t know whether to hit the on and off button or the system on and off button.

I noticed I could turn the TV off at night but it didn’t go to sleep; plus there are 4,062 other buttons on that remote – most of which I don’t know how to use. This nice young man also hooked up the VCR, but I am not sure I can get a DVD to work in it. So I may cancel Net-flix and not watch Paul Newman movies any more.

For 60 years now, ever since I started college I have tried to solve the mysteries of the universe and how to understand an ancient book written 2,000 years ago in a different language. I’m doing pretty good at that and making some progress, and if they would stop for a while I even think I could catch up on technology.

In the meantime I’m looking for an old Philco radio that has an on and off switch and nothing else.

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