Saturday, November 20, 2010

To HDTV or not to HDTV? Why is it a yearly Black Friday question?

Spouse and I were reminiscing about them good old days.  The good old days when you bought a TV set and the main decision was....19 inch?  or 25 inch?  And then you went to the store and saw which picture looked the best. You looked at the ads for the best price.  Maybe checked a magazine like Consumer Reports.

Fast forward a lot of years.  The last several Novembers, leading up to Black Friday, it has become a game to torment ourselves. 

When we were in our 20's we (for a variety of reasons) went through two periods of not having a television.  This may amaze anyone under the age of 40 who reads this blog.  I did miss it, especially because I couldn't watch my favorite show of the time (M*A*S*H).  But I really didn't miss it that much.  And as a result, a TV has not been a truly important part of my life for years.  (Now, on the other hand, they would have to pry my computer out of my cold, dead hand.).

Today, we had our yearly beat-ourselves-up session on the computer to research HDTV's.  Now, as we read, households with HDTV's are now the majority.  So should we take that plunge?

I feel pulled by seeing friends with HDTV's and how nice the picture looks.  So seductive.  But on the other hand, our Magnavox 19 inch "picture tube" TV has served us well, for many years, and that picture is nice too. Why get rid of something that still works?  And spend almost $1,000, to boot?  I don't want just any HDTV.  I want one that is internet-enabled, so I can stream Netflix movies.  And maybe watch You Tube videos on.  And....(see how the computer functions sneak in there?)  $1,000 is a lot of money.  We are grateful to have the money to spend but....wouldn't there be better uses?

Aren't we lucky to be in that position, a small voice tells me.  And, do you really need a TV?

And, will that set be reliable?  Or will it be like the glitchy refrigerator that keeps breaking down in the same way, or the washing machine (the one machine we bought new and not used) that we finally gave up on after about the 5th time the same component, a plastic piece of s**t, broke, and went back to buying used? (and not a front-loader either.)

While on the other hand, spouse (who hardly uses the computer except for checking his bank accounts), feels like he is being dragged into some kind of loathsome new age that he never wanted to be a part of.  He feels forced.  One day soon, our Magnavox will be obsolete, left in the dust.

So.. (oh, how I hate to say this)....stay tuned.

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