Monday, November 15, 2010

What a Week

Last week was a rough week. I was sicker than I can remember being in a long time. It wasn't awful, no throwing up or being curled up in a ball wishing I would die, but it just wouldn't go away. And one of the drawbacks of being a freelance artist and being your own boss is that there are no sick days.

So, after a full week of being sick, not sleeping right, doing projects, and dealing with clients, by Friday I had had it. All I wanted to do was sit on the couch and watch a hockey game that started at 5pm.

So, at 5pm, I walked over to the TV, turned on the cable box, and hit power on the TV. It slowly blinked to life, had some sound, no picture, and then turned itself off and started blinking. I hit power again and the same thing happened. I could hear the game starting but the TV never quite turned on. It had happened like this earlier in the week but then started working again. So, I kept hitting the power button.


My giant behemoth of a TV, the biggest projection TV I had ever owned, the biggest piece of furniture in my living room, had finally died.

And I didn't know what to do. We have another TV, my older tube TV from my old place, sitting in the other room. But, we hadn't bothered to hook up the digital cable box to it yet so it couldn't show me the hockey game either.

I paced for a few minutes, frantically trying to figure out what to do. So, I pushed the giant TV to one side of the living room, unplugged the older TV from the guest bedroom, and hauled it into the living room and sat it on the floor.

Going from a 55" projection TV that takes up a good corner of the living room to a 27" tube TV sitting on the floor was like someone took my season ticket holding box seats away and threw me up into the nosebleed section of the arena. But, at least I could watch hockey.

That night, after the game, I did some research on plasma TVs versus LED TVs and headed down to BestBuy. The website said they were opened until 10pm but, getting there at 9:05, I was informed they closed at 9pm. No TV for me Friday night.

But, at least it gave me some more time to do some research, pick out a TV, and make sure it was a good one. By Saturday morning I had hopped onto the BestBuy website and ordered a TV to be picked up at the store in the next town (we have a smaller one here in Boulder so it doesn't have the warehouse space of the BestBuy a few towns over.)

Monika and I went to pick it up Saturday night after dinner. When we got there we looked around for a stand to put it on and did a little shopping. Once done, we went up front to pick up our new TV. As the salesman brought out this huge box I got a little worried. After some quick measurements with a strip of BestBuy ruler paper, I found out that there was no way this box was going to fit in the car. And, to top it all off, it started snowing.

So, we called a friend who was nice enough to drive all the way out to where we were and pick us up in his truck. All it cost us was a pint of ice cream.

Saturday night at our place resembled something like a Christmas morning gone amok. Not only did we have a new 50" plasma flat screen TV but we also had a new Blu-Ray player it came with and a new TV stand to build for it. The living room was a mess of boxes and wrapping paper and new toys.

It took Monika and I most of that night and a good part of Sunday to get all the wires we had sorted out and to get everything hooked back up and in working order.

But, WOW, does it work. We figured out how to get everything, including the TV, hooked into our surround sound and, not only does the Blu-Ray player play Blu-Rays and DVDs, but it also hooks right into the internet so we can access our Netflix account and watch streaming movies right from online. I thought the picture might look bad since it can get a little rastery when I watch stuff on my computer but, oh my, it is DVD quality streaming right on the TV.

The photos of the new set-up were when we were watching Star Trek streaming from Netflix. I'm still amazed at how good the picture looked.

And, the great thing is, not only does this TV look and sound great, but it takes up about half the room as my old projection TV. I feel like I have a ton of room in the living room now. It's like a whole new house!

The next thing to do this week is to go down to the cable company and order myself some HD cable. The problem with a TV that looks so good is that the digital cable pales in comparison to what it can actually show.

So, after a week of being sick, client work, and breaking TVs, all seems right in the world. I'm feeling much better, the client work seems to have settled for the moment, and my TV is working.

I just can't wait to watch hockey in all it's HD glory!

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