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Posts tagged ‘Aaron Sorkin’

Let there be light! Or…color. Or…contrast. Or…something!

Guess what I did today?

I changed the light bulb in my TV!

Yes, I did. All by myself.

I used tools and everything.

Well…a screwdriver. Which is a tool. One tool. Ooh, and I used a box cutter to open the box, so we’ll stick with tools, plural.

And it was quite difficult, you should be very impressed.

Actually, it was super easy, but you should still be impressed, because you didn’t even know TVs had light bulbs, did you?

Well, they do. Ok, some do. Including mine.

Many years ago (let’s say 8 or 9 but probably not 10), my then husband and I bought a BIG, HUGE, SHINY NEW TV. And we got a DLP (which stands for Digital Light Processing, which is interesting, because I thought it was Digital Light Projector so we see how much I know, which is almost nothing) TV. One of the reasons we chose DLP instead of a flat screen is because they told us the TV could last forever, theoretically, and would just need to have the bulb inside replaced from time to time.

And apparently “from time to time” is a really long time, because this is the first time I’ve replaced the bulb since we separated five and a half years ago. The ex & I. The TV and I have a solid relationship. Together forever. (I wish I could draw a heart around that.)

And I was pretty sure I would be able to change it by myself because Mike (my ex) did it at one point back when he still lived with the TV, which is not a knock on him at all, just that I remember him saying it was ridiculously easy.

Recently it seemed that the TV was getting dim. Nothing drastic, but I’ve been binge watching The West Wing again (omigod it’s. so. good.) and I realized that all of the episodes looked like they were full of secret meetings in the middle of the night in dark locations. And I sort of remembered that was a warning sign before the bulb went out the first time, many years ago.

Almost six years seemed like a good long time, and that it was time to be proactive and replace it. I wasn’t even sure I would be able to find one easily, and I expected any store I went into to try to sell me a new TV. The bulb is not inexpensive. TVs have come way down in price.  Mine is no longer huge by today’s standards. However, my living room is cozy (we don’t want to offend it by calling it small) and frankly a bigger TV would look ridiculous in here. Plus, there’s nothing wrong with it. I like it. It’s HD, widescreen, I know how it works, and it works just fine. I don’t like that the world is disposable and that when what I really need is a new battery for my phone the system is designed just to replace the phone. So I was prepared to dig in my heels and insist on just a new bulb. Imagine my delight when I walked into the store where I bought the TV lo those many years ago and the guy in the TV department said nothing at all about “upgrading” but just walked me over to the service department so they could get the replacement bulb for me.

The store, in fact, is adorably charming. (Stucky Brothers, for you locals.) They still had me in the computer system from when I bought the TV and they took the time to update my address and phone number. They printed the receipt on a dot matrix printer. Apparently they’re like me: why replace it when it still works? The bulb cost almost double what I could’ve gotten it online for, but I like them, and their service, and that they’re a local, family-owned business. (My clients can buy the same things they get from me for less money online as well, and I try to practice what I preach.  Buy local when you can, people. Also, service matters.)

So I got the bulb, I sat down with the manual (perhaps the most astonishing part of this episode was that I found the manual so easily, although unbeknownst to me the bulb included instructions), and I changed that bulb. My favorite part was that it instructed me to wear clean, lint-free, soft gloves. Which led to a discovery of a pair of really cute purple gloves that I think might have been a present from someone, possibly my grandmother, possibly someone else.  They were soft and clean and lint-free, so I put them on when I put the bulb in the TV. Well done, gloves! And now I will start wearing you for real, too, sorry I forgot about you!

I almost forgot an important step in the bulb-changing process: plug the TV back in when finished. That would have been crushing, for the TV not to come back on. But I remembered, and it DID, and good gravy, it’s bright and colorful and beautiful! And I can see the faces of the people on The West Wing again – woo hoo!

Speaking of The West Wing (again), it is so much better than anything on TV right now, including The Newsroom which is Aaron Sorkin’s current show on HBO. But we can talk about it more when I’m finished. Don’t hold your breath for that. Staycation will be over soon and I won’t be able to watch TV all day long. But I will be done with season three by Monday, because that’s when the DVD needs to be back at the library.

And now, I will go back to enjoying my glorious, vibrant picture.

Oh, and see, aren’t these gloves pretty?

gloves

Summer Lovin’

Here we are mere days into the season, and I am already in the throes of a passionate summer affair. We’re committing all the classic blunders: intense declarations of love, blowing off friends to be together every day, staying up way too late at night for just a few minutes more basking in the glow, dreaming about each other at night, talking incessantly about it to others. And in typical fashion, I’m pretty sure I’m more into it. Sigh…

We’ve flirted before, sure. People whose opinions matter to me have sung your praises. I’ve caught glimpses of you here and there. But it wasn’t until earlier this spring that the time was finally right and good friends brought you to my house. We spent an hour together, then another, and another. Could this intense attraction sustain? But you have it all: wit, charm, intelligent discourse, snappy banter; instantly, I was smitten.

The West Wing, where have you been all my life?

Yep, I’m spending my summer binge-watching a TV show that first came on the air at the end of the last millennium. And it’s soooooooo gooooooood.

It’s not surprising that it I love it. I’m a huge Aaron Sorkin fan. Sports Night, love. Studio 60 on the Sunset Strip, canceled just as it was about to find its stride. A Few Good Men is one of the most quotable movies of our time. The American President is one of my very favorite movies ever, and The West Wing is cut from the same cloth. In fact, I think I’ve been driving my dad crazy telling him about the many examples of dialogue in The West Wing that are straight out of the movie. I just learned that Sorkin left the show after season four or five, so apparently I need to relish the early seasons, and time will tell where my affections lie later on.

Here’s how much I dote on Aaron Sorkin and The West Wing. I can make a list of flaws, both with the series and with his work in general (um, hi, ALL the people talk exactly the same, pelting each other with rapid-fire word assaults) and I don’t even care. Blinded by love, I am.

(With one exception. Omigod, I fucking hate Donna. She’s so annoying, and her character is implausibly unprofessional and meddling and generally irksome. She never would have made it to that level of employment.)

I have laughed out loud in every episode. Some have left me in tears. It’s kind of soul crushing how relevant the stories still are. They’re wrestling with legislation about Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, gun control, fuel emissions, marriage equality.

Oh, and I want to marry Sam Seaborn. (It’s the first time I’ve ever found Rob Lowe attractive.)

I borrowed season one from the Sunshines and on a Saturday afternoon I was watching a very intense episode, thinking it felt like a cliffhanger finale, but knowing I still had another disc to watch. On the edge of my seat, I popped the final disc in to see what happened next, and IT WAS NOTHING BUT SPECIAL FEATURES – I WAS TRICKED!

I was also in a pickle. Where to get season two? Where to get season two RIGHT THAT SECOND??? I am the one person who doesn’t have Netflix. I started looking for deals on Amazon. But that would take (two) days to arrive. Then I remembered the library! The library had it, and it was, according to their website, available. The only problem was time – I had about an hour and a half to shower, dress, primp and get to a wedding, and the library was closed the next day. Could I squeeze in a quick dash through the library to check out season two, discs 1 & 2?

Answer: Hell yes, I could. And when I got home from the wedding that night I started watching.

I may need a better solution than the library, though – a total of six days (3-day rental plus one renewal max) is not enough time to watch and enjoy sixteen episodes, even for a junkie. The fines are beyond reasonable, but it feels wrong to go into it knowing I have no intention of returning it on time….maybe.  Or maybe I just need to look at it as a donation to a community resource versus paying a subscription fee to a corporate entity. We’ll see.  😀