The Remote Control Crisis.

So the other night Earl approached me with a slightly panicked look in his eyes. This is rather unusual for him because he’s the grounded, calm one of the bunch (thank god) so I knew something was a little off.

“I can’t turn off the television.”

This was instantly troubling to me because our television is less than two years old and it cost a lot of money. It’s a 47-inch, high def, super high Hz with built in Yahoo widgets (who the hell uses Yahoo on their television) and quite frankly, it shouldn’t be having an issue at it’s young age. It’s not like we use it not stop or anything.

The batteries in the remote had gone dead from Earl holding down the fast forward button while trying to stomach an episode of American Idol. Thank god we don’t have to pay for videotape anymore.

Since the batteries in the remote were dead, pressing the “power” button on the remote accomplished nothing. This would normally be the way we turn off the television, so we were left to ponder as to how to turn the television off without the availability of a remote control. We did something we rarely do: we walked up to the television and touched it.

Now back in the day this would be something that we would do on a semi-hourly basis; to change the channel, you had to walk up to the television and turn a knob. To change the volume you had to do the same. I got really good at giving the dial a good hearty spin to get from channel 3 to channel 9 without having to stop at 4-8, though it did result in a broken knob. Don’t tell anyone because I never did.

As we approached the television, a quick assessment indicated that there were no buttons on the front or top of the television. I shimmied around the side and saw nothing. There was a brief moment of hope when I spotted something that looked like a knob or button but it turned out to be the one screw that holds the whole mess together. The blue light continued to pulse. A friendly message bounced around on the screen telling us that there was “no signal detected.” I considered pulling the power plug but that would involve two people hauling this massive piece of entertainment equipment out of the entertainment center. I did have a brief consideration of just turning the power off to the house but that would have disrupted too many things.

Thankfully, Earl found AAA batteries in the surround sound receiver remote. We put them in the television remote, said a little prayer and pressed the button.

The bouncing message disappeared and the blue light went off.

Crisis averted.

Now we have to get up to change the volume of the surround sound until we find more batteries. The horror.