Life With Ferris: TV Info Overload

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

My brain is full. Packed to the brim with hundreds, no thousands, no millions of things. Some of them are important things I don't ever want to forget; the births of my sons. Any of the dogs I've loved. My people. 

Some of them are so trivial they don't even deserve to take up valuable space in my head, but they do. Random phone numbers I'll never need. Paul McCartney's birthday. Lucy Ewing's name from Dallas.

My problem is that all these things take up equal space and aren't filed according to importance. I can picture my oldest son's squished little face the first time I held him in my arms as easily as I can recite the number of the Chattanooga Free Press, which I never call. So there's no system, or organization and every day, no every hour, no every minute, the info I have in my head gets a little messier. Kind of like my desk - there are scraps of important things mixed in with junk mail – my brain is challenged. 

So once I figure something new out, like how to operate the television set, I don't want any changes. It took me a while to figure out how to turn the thing on, then make it change from a DVD screen to a television screen, then choose a show to watch, and then sometimes, on special occasions, demand to see a program in the On Demand section and be able to actually watch it.  

Life was good. Newly self-reliant as far as the television set is concerned (don't ask us to use our new cell phones) my husband and I navigated all around the EPB interface (not sure that's the right term but love using it) with three remote controls. We easily watched the Parenthood episode from the night before. Or caught up with Boardwalk Empire or zipped through the commercials during The Killing, all by pointing the remote and clicking little buttons that did predictable things. 

Being able to turn on the television and watch something after dinner in front of a roaring fire was a good thing, a little bonus at the end of the day. Seeing what new danger Nucky Thompson had gotten into over the week mellowed me out, made my day-to-day dramas seem mellow, even trivial. 

But the other night I turned on the television to watch the finale of Boardwalk Empire and nothing looked familiar. There was a strange list of words on the left side of the screen and when I punched the button I always punch, an endless list of networks came up. Where was the little tab that said HBO? The one that revealed a handful of programs in an organized fashion? Listed numerically, the episodes were simple to identify, but I had no idea what the gobbledy gook of new info meant on my TV screen. And I did not feel like learning. It was time to relax! 

Irritated, I pushed a few buttons but only got deeper and deeper into the EPB interface, and I'm pretty sure that term was correct at that point. Symbols I'd never seen and an endless array of options displayed where the little HBO tab used to be. 

My husband tried to no avail. We called our sons, who obviously checked caller ID and chose not to answer.  I tried again. By this time our mellow was completely and totally harshed. 

I called EPB on a long shot someone would answer at 8 p.m. She did! The woman on the other end of the line walked me through the SEARCH button to find my show. It took longer than it used to, and it's more confusing to me that it used to be. 

But finally I curled up in my chair with my little dog and checked in on the affairs in Atlantic City. Poor Owen Slater is dead, Richard Harrell went on a killing spree and Nucky's life is a mess. 

My mellow is restored. 

(Ferris Robinson can be contacted at ferrisrobinson@gmail.com)



5th Annual Veterans' Business And Education Expo Is Tuesday

The Tennessee Veterans Business Association will hold its fifth annual Business and Education Expo from  8 a.m.-4 p.m. on Tuesday  at the Holiday Inn - World's Fair Park in Knoxville. This is a dual purpose event, a business trade show and hiring/education expo, and will provide opportunities for business to business networking, career opportunities showcase, ... (click for more)

3 Chief Petty Officers Pinned In Ceremony on Saturday

Three chief petty officers were officially pinned during their chief pinning ceremony on Saturday  at the downtown YMCA in Chattanooga .  The chief petty officer is the highest attainable rank in the United States Naval Sea Cadet Corps. Chief petty officers must be in the Sea Cadet program for a minimum of 33 months, attend certain advanced trainings, complete ... (click for more)

Investigators Found Trail Of Blood, Beer Bottles Near Site Of Slaying Of Riverman

An investigator said a trail of blood and beer bottles was near where the lifeless body of 46-year-old Donald Rogers was found in an aluminum fishing boat on April 24, 2012. Detective Robin Langford said when he arrived at the site by boat docks off Johnson Road the body was still in the boat. He said the victim's head and arms were over the side of the boat. Chance Loftis, ... (click for more)

Man Stabbed In Domestic Dispute On Sunrise Lane Saturday Morning

A man was stabbed Saturday morning on Sunrise Lane.   At approximately  11:41  a.m., the Chattanooga Police Department responded to a reported stabbing at 309 Sunrise Lane.  Officers located a 45-year-old black male suffering from a non life-threatening stab wound. The victim was transported to a local hospital for his injury.   The ... (click for more)

Obama Doesn't Want You To Save For College

Over the past few decades, federal aid for post-secondary education has decreased and transitioned largely from grants to guaranteed student loans.   At the same time, the cost of college has far exceeded the cost of inflation creating a situation in which college has become less affordable and causing students to pile up debt that is at an all-time high.   This debt ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Great Peace Pipe

There is a serious rift between our state legislators and Erlanger Hospital that has me worried. If I worry about something, it doubles the power of the worry. My problem? I am convinced we have the best collection of people at the State Legislature in Nashville we’ve ever had – I adore each of them. I am also blessed to believe Erlanger is back on track and, after a sensational ... (click for more)