Put it out of its misery

Seriously, 90% of what you see is crap. There are a few real gems, shows with scripts and production values better suited to the movies, but other than that, it's eyesight destroying fluff, entering your home without asking first.

Now, don't get me wrong, I currently own a nice television set . And it is nice for viewing out-of-town sporting events, but the radio works just fine (and sometimes, better) for this. No, my overlarge and unwieldy electronic altar is for real usage.

Home theater.

I have always loved movies, and was a firm believer in the video revolution. in the 80's, my mother and I would rejoice when there was a sale on VHS tapes, and I have "fond" memories of waiting in a cold, cold parking lot one winter morning for the video rental place to sell off their extra Units. We'd tape something at the drop of a hat, and someday I'll move the huge backload of tapes we amassed over to DVD. (But that's a rant for another time.)

But as I aged, and my means increased, I became increasingly dissatisfied with watching movies on television. "Pan and Scan" is the devil, an unfortunate artifact of poor marketing by network heads in the 60's. But most folks just don't know the difference, so it remains the standard for at least a few more years.

My first permanent home in Seattle was in a 2 bedroom condo in Renton. I really liked it, but for some reason I never unpacked, except for one room. The room in which I put my "entertainment center"

At the time, my A/V needs were served by a TV/VCR combo I had liberated from the FRPG offices (with permission, of course), several Commodore 64 monitors (the best and most dependable tv's I've ever owned), assorted video game systems, and a crappy stereo from the 70's I had purchased from a second hand store in Richland, WA. Then, the whole thing was stacked something like this upon crappy pressboard shelves, the ones your parents bought you when you were a kid because you didn't know any better.

Crappy speakers from a different stereos altogether provided the seperation I needed for stereo sound, and the results were satisfying.

Or so I thought. On reflection, it sounded like crap, something I discovered once I moved a) into a bigger place, and b) to a bigger paycheck.

Soon after moving I recieved an overly large and unwieldy bonus check from my then employer. After paying off a debt that had long bothered me, first on my list of impulse buys was a DVD player, and, of course, my first five DVDs.

I would have bought more, but having purchased the 5 disc changer at the same time, it only seemed logical. (Following the same logic today, I'd need the 300 DVD changer. They make it, oh yes they do.)

Next was for something to show it on, but only after I spent even more of my not-so-hard earned cash on an entertainment center. (The monolithic one you clicked on to come here.) It was/is a well constructed model, with all sorts of nifty drawers and cabinets to store things in. And heavy, Oh so heavy. Having moved it from place to place three times now, I am wholly in favor of the newer models, which come in component parts for ease of upgrading.

I mention this now, because I didn't think then about the size of the television. Never before having been in a position where my means outstripped my desire, I didn't think I could own a television that was too big. But once the center was assembled, I undertook the task of filling it with a worthy relic.

(more later)

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