Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Reality and Entertainment

I was born into a home with a black and white television. Chances are that if you were born after 1965 you came to a home with a color television. The old black and white sets were replaced or delegated to another room where it was a luxury to be a home with two TVs.

Small black and white TVs could still be purchased. These sets were bought by parents for their kids to put in their bedrooms. It kept the kids out of their thinning hair and away from their (the adults) TV.

We were a one-TV home. I remember the day when we replaced our black and white for our first color TV. The black and white set had lost all of it ability to hold the horizon. Remember the horizontal hold where the screen would roll and you would turn the knob and it would start rolling in the opposite direction?

Getting a color TV was a big deal and fascinating and all that, yet somehow I felt a sense of loss and remorse. I had grown up in the world of the gray scale. It was a world where the real world was seen in living color and the entertainment world was seen in black and white. Suddenly I was being tosses into a gyre where the entertainment world was attempting to fool me with its clever imitation.

I rebelled when I could by turning the color control knob to black and white. I was annoyed by the colors. In black and white, when the NBC peacock fanned its tail, I could easily tell each feather was in a different color though the tones were gray.

Eventually I gave up my quest for black and white entertainment other than the occasional foreign film. I rolled over and accepted color. It’s much too hard to figure out how to change the color these days. There is no longer any knobs to turn. You have to find a set up screen by using a remote and then you have to actually alter and save settings and then find a way back to watch a program. Sure some of you may laugh, but I have a hard time storing numbers on my cell phone let alone doing something with the TV other than changing the channels or lowering the volume.


Blogger loopymamain06 said...

do you dream in black and white?

4:16 AM  
Blogger Auntie said...

I barely was born before your 1965 cut-off and as I child recall having both a black and white and eventually a color tv. As a kid, I recall it didn't matter. And after school, years later, it still didn't matter if they were showing one of the b&w Gilligan's Island episodes or the color ones. We still loved it.

To this day I still find comfort in watching old b&w movies. 'Specially on a rainy day or when I have a cold. It's somehow comforting. Of course now that I don't get to watch the TeeVee, I have been a little.....lost.

5:50 AM  
Blogger g said...

i remember being irritated when the wizard of oz started in b/w.

'til she got to oz that is.

6:31 PM  
Blogger MissKris said...

I still prefer black and white and I am NOT crazy about HD TV. I find it pulls on my eyes to the point where I feel like my eyeballs are going to pop out of my head. Growing up, we had only one family in the neighborhood who had a color TV for the longest time and the parents were kind enough to let all of us neighbor kids hang out on the nites "Batman" came on "in LIVING color!" Now, THAT was cool.

6:38 PM  
Blogger The Guy Who Writes This said...

Loopy, I don't remember my dreams, but the only three I do remember; the King Kong was in B/W and the others were not during day light hours.

Auntie, sounds like time for a TV revolution.

g, you didn't have emerald glasses?

Kris, I buy a new TV every twenty five years or longer. I doubt I'll have an HD set before 2018.

5:28 AM  
Blogger Uncle Walt said...

I thought the spare TV my parents gave me when I moved out was B&W. It had always shown B&W pictures.

But one day it suddenly showed color after being accidentally jarred by a dorm mate.

Turns out the color tubes' contacts just needed a cleaning, and the jar had allowed them to scrape some of the age off ... making a clean contact once again.

Just too bad it happened while watching a show on surgeries, during lunch. It's one thing to watch a surgery in B&W while eating. Quite another to suddenly see it in full color. LOL!

7:32 AM  

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