Friday, January 18, 2008

Too Much Violins on Television

I should have seen the conflict coming. Since the computer has supplanted the television set as the center of home entertainment in my house, war was imminent.

This evening I decided to exercise my TV remote. It has become lazy and lethargic. I fear it has even started to develop atrophy in its buttons. Also, it has started to become somewhat standoffish by choosing to hide at times. Of course it denies this claim, saying that I simply misplaced it.

I'm sure it has become jealous of the mouse. No doubt it has become indignant to be playing second fiddle to that other device. It has reminded me on more than one occasion how much time we used to spend together. It cited all the sports, movies, specials and action programs we sat through together. It touched a nerve one day when it asked me if I ever fell to sleep with the mouse in my hand or on my lap.

I suppose if I were in its caddy shoes, I might feel the same way. The remote has even taken on a air of arrogance when it compares itself with the mouse, extolling its own virtues. After all, the mouse only has two buttons, but it has dozens. The mouse is tethered by a wire to the computer and is useless if it is disconnected. It, on the other hand, is free to be used virtually anywhere in the room.

The other day the remote tried to commit suicide! It allowed itself to die. There was no note. I don't know if it appreciated the surgery I performed by replacing its batteries because it never even thanked me.

It must have been reaching out in desperation when it started bragging about its ability to access hundreds of channels. Perhaps I erred in my judgement when I told it that the remote had access to literally millions of sites! My lack of compassion was revealed at the wrong time. It began to exhibit signs of "remote remorse," a malady I should wish on no electronic device.

Fortunately, I knew just what to do to smooth over our relationship. I reminded it that on Sunday there are two NFL playoff games, and that I would be spending nearly all afternoon and into the evening with it - watching football together. I could feel the love!

Peace restored, I began to surf the TV channels. At one point I landed on the loft scene of "Fiddler on the Roof." I said aloud, "Remote, wouldn't you agree with me that there is way too much violins on television tonight?" I can only assume it agreed with me because the remote didn't answer.

I'm sure those who read this litany will know that "too much violins on television" is not an original play on words by me. As soon as I mouthed those words I remembered where I had heard it before. I can still see Chevy Chase and Gildna Radner at a news desk on a Saturday Night Live skit.

Following is the script of reporters Chevy Chase and Miss Emily Latella (Radner):
Emily Littela: And in other news, there's too much violins on TV. There's too much violins on television. They should put the violins on at eleven after the kids are asleep.

Chevy Chase: Um, Emily, that's violence, not violins.

Emily Littela: Never mind.

Chevy Chase: Here with an editorial reply is Miss Emily Lattella.

Emily Lattella: What's all this fuss I keep hearing about violins on television? Why don't parents want their kids to see violins on television? I thought the Leonardo Bernstein concerts were just lovely, now, if they only show violins on television after ten o'clock at night, the little babies will all be asleep and they won't learn any music appreciation. They'll learn to play guitars, and bongo drums and go to Africa and join these rock'n roll outfits and they won't drink milk! I think there should be more violins on television and less game shows, it's terrible the way...

Chevy Chase: Um, Littella, that's Violence on television. Not violins.

Emily Lattella: Oh, well that's diffrent.

Chevy Chase: Yes.

Emily Lattella: Never mind!



Miss Cellania said...

Too much sax, too. Sax and violins, that's all I ever hear! Maybe I should stay away from the music video channels.

Jack K. said...

I know where my remote was. If all is well it will be on the table next to the easy chair.

I wonder what would happen if I googled sax and violins?

Jack K. said...

The result was 25,600 hits in .22 seconds. Wow. I'm set for life.

OldHorsetailSnake said...

My remote is way too remote to talk to me.

P.S. This is funny, Pointer.

Skunkfeathers said...

My pet rock, Seymour, once converted my TV remote into a home defense device, after I allowed him to watch an Outer Limits (TOS) on a Sci-Fi Channel marathon. I inadvertently discovered it when I vaporized (a) a stack of old phone books (b) the refrigerator behind them and (c) the apartment across the hall.

Since Seymour's been on an extended sabbatical in Japan and Ohio, I haven't had to worry about any problems with my DVD remote. Yet.