Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Owner and His Electronics Are Showing Their Age

Newspaper article The Record (Bergen County, NJ)

Owner and His Electronics Are Showing Their Age

Article excerpt

"Good grief! How old is that TV?" my (so-called) friend Troy asked me in January. He was pointing to the majestic old Sony in my living room. "Isn't that the same TV set that the family on 'Abbey Road' has?"

I rolled my eyes.

"It's 'Downton Abbey,' " I corrected, "not Abbey Road. And that show is set during World War I."

"Yeah," he said, laughing. "I know."

(Grumble.)

Nowadays, it's not enough to have the new computer. Or the new tablet. Or the new WHATEVER.

You have to have the new everything. Because if you don't, the other kids will tease you, pull your pigtails and write tasteless, disparaging things on your schoolbag.

When I actually WAS in school -- which was also sometime around World War I -- peer pressure had to do with your clothes. Your haircut. Your bicycle. And, eventually, your car.

Today, it's all about your electronics. Your i-this and your Android-that, which all bleep and bloop and are all (somehow) connected to one another, so they can share vital information and talk about you while you're sleeping.

In order to do this, however, these gadgets must be constantly updated and replaced. Otherwise, you won't be able to use your cellphone to tell your computer to set your digital video recorder while you're working late at of the office, or stuck in traffic, or trapped in an elevator somewhere.

I ignored Troy's snarky comments about my old television for a month or so. But then, last week, I began to reconsider his suggestion.

As I told Troy on the phone on Monday: "I wouldn't mind a high- definition, flat-screen, 21st-century-type TV."

"Good idea," he said. "That antique in your living room is ... well, how old IS it?"

"I'm not really sure," I said. "I think I bought it when I moved to New Jersey in 1990. Before that, I was using the one that's now in my bedroom. So I bought the second set. Then I put the second set in the living room and put the first set upstairs. Which wasn't easy. They both weigh about 800 pounds."

"Well, I'm free on Wednesday," he said. "If you want to go shopping. I can help you out, help connect it ... and all that junk."

"Great!"

He asked if I knew what I wanted.

"I'm not sure," I said, "but my friend Andrew has one that's really cool. …

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