When we first got television here we only had one channel.

Stick the old coat hanger in the aerial socket and there it is – HTV in glorious 405 line monochrome, all the way from Wales.

For some reason that was the only signal we could get.  BBC was wonky to put it mildly and RTE was virtually non-existent.

Actually, RTE was there but because of the mountains, the signal used to bounce and ricochet around before arriving here so we used to get five or six RTEs all on the one channel which made viewing somewhat messy.

There have been a few small improvements since then.  Colour came in and the poor old 405 line service was switched off.  Then digital made an appearance in the form of satellite.  RTE was still bouncing off the mountains though so we had to watch the satellite version.

I don’t watch much television.  Maybe a few hours a week.  However the set is switched on most evenings at around six.  That’s when I give Herself her evening dose of Prozac and she will then sit happily watching any old shite that the satellite coughs up.  It keeps her quiet, but I have to be careful of the advertisements as I haven’t told her about dish washers and some other expensive kitchen toys and she may want one if she sees it on the telly.

They are switching off all the analogue signals next month.  It will be digital only thanks to the fucking EU.

I have been trying to get rid of the television for years and this may be my chance.  They keep waffling about the changeover and how we have to update or upgrade or whatever.  They say that if we see a small warning message on the bottom of the screen that we are going to lose all signals on the 24th of October.

I bought a bottle of Tippex.

It took a steady hand but the warning sign is now etched onto our television so it appears on all channels.  I have told Herself that she’ll have to take up reading or knitting or something as on the 24th, the screen will go blank.

Any time some irritating programme appears on screen I look at my little handiwork and count down the days.

“X 24 October”

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X 24 October — 7 Comments

  1. I gave up on the telly years ago. Scores of channels and every one of them pure shite.
    These days I download movies (shhh – don’t tell anyone) and for the occasional things we want to watch live – F1 for me and Man United (??? Egad!) for the missus – I just stream them on the desktop. If they’re on Brit terrestrial channels, I have a VPN I use (not allowed to watch UK TV if you live elsewhere for some stupid reason), if they’re on satellite, there are a few good streaming sites out there that for a small fee give access to all areas.

  2. Mossy – Nonsense.  It’s just a gentle let-down with no tears or tantrums.

    Nisakiman – The only problem with watching stuff on a laptop is that the screen is so damn small.  I suppose I could always hook it up to a soon-to-be-redundant television?

  3. I have a 22″ flat screen monitor, which I guess is small by today’s standards, but it does for us. Of course, these days you can get these humungous flat screen TVs which have a USB port, and you just plug ’em in to the computer and away you go. I might get one when the price comes down to my level…

  4. Nisakiman – I’m stuck with a 17″ laptop screen.  The television is a good bit bigger so I’m thinking of permanently wiring it to the laptop once all the signals have “been switched off”.  It’s going to be difficult to carry around though….

    Slab – I would have though a lack of understanding the language would be a bonus?  At least then you can imagine they are saying something intelligent?

  5. Slab, the TV here is, if you can envisage the possibility, considerably worse than that available on the English speaking channels. And I have the additional problem of actually understanding a lot of it…
    It reminds me of many years ago when I was travelling in India. I met an English chap who had gone to the trouble of learning Hindi, and I expressed my envy at his being able to understand all that was being said around him. His reply was to the effect that it was to his eternal regret that he had ever learned the language, because everyone talked utter crap, and that at least when he didn’t understand he could imagine they were saying something intelligent.

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