Sound the Alarms

And alert the media — Portland is the least prepared city in 56 US markets for the February 18th, 2009 conversion to digital television. According to Portland Business Journal, “22.4 percent of all homes in the Portland area aren’t ready for the conversion to all-digital TV, according to new study by The Nielsen Co.” Our old nemesis, New York City, ranked numero uno in preparedness “with just 3.2 percent of households not ready for the new signals.”

There was no mention of Seattle’s ranking, but I’m sure it was somewhere between, “We’re so much bigger, better and norther than you are, Portland,” and “Our televisions totally rule.”

Here’s what I want to know, Portland, how long have you known this was going to happen? Enough with your greeness and your bicycling ways, get that TV shit together. Want help doing so? You’ll need a converter. What’s that you say? You’d rather or you need to spend your money on other things? Well, “The government is offering coupons to partially offset the cost of buying a converter, meaning many households can make the switch for about $10.” Here’s the link to the coupon. Thank you so much, government!

But here’s my concern, government: I don’t have a television. I don’t have one because I love television more than I love my own family and if I were to own a TV, you’d have to call social services because my kid would be gnawing on uncooked macaroni and my partner would be wearing the same clothes for months on end because Mommy can’t tear herself away from Project Runway. So if I don’t have a TV, which puts me in the 8.8% of white households who are completely unprepared, I wonder if I can use my coupon for something else. Like a coke and a smile.

Check out that time stamp on this post! Wassup 4 a.m.! Maybe I’ll use my coupon for a hyperbolic chamber where I’ll have one full night of sleep.

13 Comments so far

  1. Gary Walter (unregistered) on February 19th, 2008 @ 6:38 am

    Yes, we don’t have a TV either – for the same reasons you’ve mentioned. We would like to shield our kids from acquiring one more addiction passed on from their ancestors.

    Actually we do have a TV in the garage; it is stored out their with an old cassette player and turntable – for those just-in-case moments. So, I’ve thought I should rush out and get a converter, JIC, but I really don’t need a TV – and we don’t get many channels here in Columbia County anyway.

  2. PeasePlease (unregistered) on February 19th, 2008 @ 7:18 am

    Melissa, you crack me up. I love your posts.

  3. McAngryPants (unregistered) on February 19th, 2008 @ 8:21 am

    ML…you should post MORE at 4am!

    I’ve floated the idea of ditching our Sat service, but not the whole thing! Although anymore anything I want to watch is on the internets (or obtainable from teh internets). Hell, with that damn ball of fire staying in the sky longer I’m compelled to work more on the house…play with children…talk with wifey. ugh. DAMN YOU BALL OF FIRE!! Don’t you see I need more quality time with my "second mother & first lover!"

    I think I need to go home and hug my tv.

  4. divebarwife (unregistered) on February 19th, 2008 @ 9:28 am

    The problem here is all the folks who are too cool for themselves and claim to watch nothing but PBS and the Discovery Channel….now we know they’re lying ’cause to watch the Discovery Channel they’d have top have cable!

  5. Ken (unregistered) on February 19th, 2008 @ 10:04 am

    Why is New York our "nemesis?" Can’t we both just…be?

  6. Ms. Blake (unregistered) on February 19th, 2008 @ 10:47 am

    I can always burn a copy of Project Runway onto a dvd for you… (insert evil laughter here)

  7. Devlyn (unregistered) on February 19th, 2008 @ 11:42 am

    When the bf moved in, we got cable, which lasted about 3 months after only watching maybe 3 hours worth. We don’t have a teevee mostly because the bf has a 30" Apple display which is awesome enough as it is. Oh, and Netflix/downloading shows is cheaper than cable.

  8. brewcaster (unregistered) on February 19th, 2008 @ 1:15 pm

    I motherfucking LOVE TV. I am all about it. I got the HD kicking. I watch a lot of stuff from educational to complete trash. HORRAYYY for entertainment and education!

  9. melissa lion (unregistered) on February 19th, 2008 @ 7:09 pm

    To Gary Walter: Chuck the TV. There is no JIC scenario. I’ll tell you what the JIC scenario is — it’s spending 3 months on bedrest. We had a TV in the closet up until I was two weeks into lying on the couch, then we got rid of the telly all together.

    Pleaseplease: your check is in the mail. Oh, and if you could let the people you know who pay people to write funny things of my vast talents, I’d be very appreciative!

    MC: C’mon.

    MsBlake: I prefer to watch television at other people’s houses. So if you have PR, then I’ll bring the beer and we can have a good sit down at your place. Be warned, I can watch TV in eight hour stretches. No really.

    Brewcaster: I know you and your missus must have the greatest time ever! Can I be a fly on the wall of your marriage? That might be creepy.

    To the rest of you: Gracias!

  10. Michael M. (unregistered) on February 20th, 2008 @ 10:05 am

    I have a TV set in my closet. I think it’s a 13" screen. I’m pretty sure it’s color (do they still make b&w TVs?), but I can’t say I’ve ever watched it so I don’t know. I inherited it. It can’t be digital-ready, it’s too old, but as I’m not planning on getting a converter I’ll happily pass on the government coupon … just more money Congress is throwing down the drain.

  11. jen (unregistered) on February 20th, 2008 @ 10:43 am

    We only have our tv set up for our Netflix addiction. One disc a night, that’s all we ask.

  12. chris (unregistered) on February 20th, 2008 @ 4:35 pm

    So what it means is that 22% or about 1 in 5 Portland TV’s either (a) use terrestrial broadcast with old tuners or (b) only use the tube for video rental. I suspect the latter.

    Comcast/Satellite people must be scratching their heads on Portland.

    I confess to having the whole HD/surround sound/bass /inyourface home theater, so I won’t notice the switchover. I suspect the 22% in Portland won’t really notice either.

  13. zilfondel (unregistered) on February 22nd, 2008 @ 12:56 am

    Who fucking cares? I only use my TV for video games and movies.

    I know! Let’s subsidize poor people to waste MORE of their time watching useless advertisements to buy junk they can’t afford and brainless "reality TV" shows.

    Whatever happened to the classic books, movies and video games?

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