He’s totally blind in one eye and has three color TVs in only one room of the house. During the football season each set is tuned to a football game in three sizes, large, medium and small, according to importance. On an average viewing day the main screen, a forty-two inch high definition Vizio with 1080p plays the prime show, usually pre-recorded for viewing at a more convenient time. On the smaller screens, and always without sound are MSNBC and a women’s sporting event, something like the professional bowling tour or the LPGA Kraft Nabisco Championship (the old Colgate Dinah Shore Classic) from Rancho Mirage.
Dudley opted for Cox Cable and has every plan they offer, including 200+ channels ranging from Fishing Christians to Swamp People, Toddlers & Tiaras to the Real Housewives of Atlanta. His remote-guided options allow him to skip commercials, meaning that a three hour football game can be viewed in ninety minutes. Then there is the bonus of pausing the main screen to turn up the sound on set No. 2 and catch a juicy moment of another broadcast on a smaller screen. But Dudley admits that the favorite feature of his set up is being able to view the Rose Bowl Parade through three different network broadcasts with unlimited stop and starts.
For those times when the provocative images of lady bowlers or goal line sacks become too wearing, Dudley likes to dim his smaller screens and turn the big Vizio to one of the thirty music channels, choosing from a global menu of sounds that includes Mexican, rap, light classical, hymns and Lady Gaga. Of course the sound is not limited to one room but spread throughout the house with the help of a forty inch Samsung a few rooms away.
Dudley’s Cox Cable contract also includes telephone and Internet and an array of remote control devices with buttons enough to confuse the TV repairman. All for the low, low price of $260 a month.
Mine is a leaner plan, which includes one remote device that controls little more than on/off, volume and channel selection. To preview upcoming shows means clicking to the TV guide channel and studying the roll call of shows revolving tortoise-like down the screen. The roster of available channels includes all three of the major networks, with of course, CNN and FOX and Telemundo. But my television desires are more muted than Dudley’s and I’m happy with my color console as long as I can get the foil just right on the rabbit ears and Jerry Springer isn’t pre-empted.