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Until December 2010 we used a 24" CRT with a 5.1 system, DVD player, and VHS. (We once had a much bigger CRT but it died.) We considered it a home theater; we watched movies in wide screen whenever possible. Of course, we had to sit fairly close, wide screen on a 24" TV made things very small. Certainly it wasn't ideal picture-wise, but the sound was pretty good even with the old Altec Lansing as a center. In fact here's a photo of it I managed to dig up.

Shocking, no? Things for me are so much better now.


My first ever TV was when I was 13 in England. Nine-inch b/w. One station: the BBC. It was owned by neighbors who would sometimes let me watch – when the TV received which was from 7 pm to 11 pm.

You can imagine how I felt when we moved to Canada in 1953 and had an absolutely HUGE 19-in b/w that received, gasp, three stations.

It was a hard life then. Consult TV Guide, yell ‘Ed Sullivan in five!’ and manually turn the station selector to channel seven while turning the aerial rotor for a better picture. Commercials were for bathroom/snack breaks yet some were so interesting we’d wait which caused, at program’s end, a mad rush to the can (parents first, kids after). Some shows were rated by the water consumption during commercial breaks.

Close my eyes and I remember all the programs. Maybe it was the novelty of them yet some stick in my mind that some of those recent blur. And that’s not due to age but because some are just terrible. Terrible defined as poor writing supported by a pre-recorded laugh track (but on that I go into a rant).

It was so new back then.

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When Life Gives You Lemons
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