safety and TV
guns are bad, widescreens are good
Because I need to choose paint colors and ceiling fans and a place for my vegetable garden and a place for my sofa, I have instead spent the day shopping for a new television set. Well, I’ve been price-comparing online, but that counts as shopping, sort of.
There are many, many things that need to be done in the new house, but instead of worrying about those things, our world fell apart as we discovered the TiVo was broken. I know I’ve talked about this already, I’m just emphasizing how devastating it truly was.
This weekend, we immediately bought a new TiVo, and now we’re thinking of making the formal living/dining area our family room, and turning the family room into my study. The only hitch is that there’s no cable connection in the formal living/dining area, so we’ll have to get someone to come hack a hole in the wall and put one in. Once the cable actually works. Which it doesn’t. Though I’m still, apparently, paying for it. This is just one reason why I don’t really want cable.
Obviously, this is a stupid thing to be spending all my time on. Though, I learned an important lesson today, and that is: sometimes you want your cable to work regardless of what room it’s in or how much you’re paying for it.
My mom called and the conversation began like this:
"What are you doing today? I was at a shooting."
"You were at a shindig?"
"A shooting! A shooting! At CNN headquarters. Turn on CNN."
"WHAT?! I can’t turn it on. I’m in the car. Plus, my cable doesn’t work. Well, I don’t have cable in my car, I mean my cable at home doesn’t work. Did you say shooting?"
Holy crap. Here I am, grouchy about driving the wee one half way across the world to school and back, grouchy that I can’t seem to find a kick ass 40" LCD flat screen for the amount of money I want to pay (nothing), and come to find out, while I’m wallowing in all sorts of dumb and selfish things (because I’m procrastinating other more important selfish things), my mother is running for her life through downtown Atlanta.
She’s fine and her fight-or-flight instinct kicked in after she heard the second gun shot. I told her at least she knows now that her impulse at the onset of mortal danger is to run the hell out the first door. Some people might drop where they are or hide in a corner. She just booked it out of there. So even though the day was scary, at least she knows something new about herself. That’s kind of cool, right? Right?
And my dad… he works across the street at the newspaper. So while mom was wandering around CNN, trying to avoid deadly domestic disputes, he was in a meeting that got interrupted when the newsroom heard of the chaos across the street. He checked his cell phone – two breathless messages he couldn’t hear over the sirens of police and ambulances. Can you imagine THAT feeling? You’re meeting your wife for lunch. You hear there’s been a shooting at the place you were meeting her. Your voice mail produces a series of unintelligible messages of heavy breathing and sirens, and you’re watching the whole scene unfold before you.
I just got off the phone with them and they’re pretty freaked out, understandably. And as I always do, I’ve turned this around to be about me. Worrying about drive times and TVs is kind of moronic, isn’t it, when your family is in peril? In fact, it’s moronic to worry about at most any time. That doesn’t mean I’ll stop worrying about it, but at least I’ve been reminded to chill the hell out about stupid things. Those kinds of reminders are important. Though it would be nice if they didn’t have to come from these kinds of crazy ass dramatic situations. Damn.