So Long Old Friends

Posted: Friday, June 12, 2009 at 12:00 am
By: Doug Lund
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I don’t know how in the world I ever got to sleep at night before television.
While most people require absolute quiet and darkness to achieve a proper night’s rest, I have to have a little light and a little noise to lull me into slumber.
I’m not sure if it’s a basic fear of the dark or to be alone with just my own thoughts but even as a kid, stuck in the same bedroom with my two brothers, I insisted that the closet light be left on with the door open just a crack. That provided the necessary illumination and my little portable radio, tuned to KOMA and turned down low, gave sufficient background to let me doze off.
Linda has learned to cope with my quirky need to have the bedroom TV on by keeping her earplugs handy to shut out both the audio and the snoring.
My addiction to TV doesn’t end there. I’ve always had portable radios with TV sound so when we travel I could  tune-in to television programs. You’d be surprised at how many shows really didn’t require a picture..especially the situation comedies like “Seinfeld” and “Cheers.” 
Linda, God love her, actually became a willing participant in enabling my habit. For Christmas one year she gave me a little hand-held black and white TV which proved to be a rather dangerous distraction while she would occasionally offer to take the wheel while I watched an episode of “Everybody loves Raymond.”
One Father’s Day, she gave me a dandy little portable color TV that got really good reception and could run off power from the cigarette lighter.
It was handy to have along when we made overnight visits to the homes of friends or family who didn’t offer such luxuries as a bedroom TV.
It was a little bulky, though, so a few years later on my birthday, Linda got me the latest in cutting edge television technology..a hand-held COLOR model.  It was a little tough on batteries but really came in handy for watching the Vikings or Twins games during family picnics in the park. ( I know, I’m ashamed.)
 Adiós mis compadres
I only bring this up because as of Friday June 12th, all of these wonderful toys that have kept me entertained and tranquilized for so long have become as useless as wine glasses at a lutefisk feed.  The switch-over to digital television has made them extinct.
I’ve known this day was coming, of course, and sort of mentally prepared for it. But they have been such good friends and good company for so long it’s hard to just toss them out on the electronic trash heap with the VCR machines, cassette tape recorders and antiquated computers.
Wait a minute!
Somebody just sent me this ad.
Honey, guess what I’d like for our anniversary this month!

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