There’s nothing like a tight sexy box, I always say, and after much umming and ahing the wife and I have finally acquired one for the use of the entire family.
Having been a cable TV subscriber for the best part of 10 years I was, I admit, reticent about the benefits of a set-top box but finally the law of economics won out. We need to make some savings and paying out for a huge cable TV package that features hundreds of TV channels we don’t actually watch seemed idiotic. My quality of life is not going to suffer for being without Bid-Up TV, Price War TV, Television X and Hot Grannies From Grimsby. That last one is made up by the way. Though I do, I admit, wince at losing all the history channels – my wife knows I am rather partial to an odd evening of “Hitler P0rn” as she calls it.
The set-top box we’ve gone for accesses all the channels we watch regularly and features a hard drive that can record 2 programmes simultaneously or record one programme while you are watching another. For someone who was still operating a front loading VCR last week that is technological progress indeed. Of course it now means the wife and I are experiencing recording lust and have already recorded a whole heap of programmes that normally we’d have been happy to let pass us by in the vain belief that we will one day find the time to watch them. There’s already 2 episodes of The Rob Brydon Show on the hard drive that we still haven’t decided to watch. Not sure whether this is good taste or bad taste.
Anyway, now that we’ve got a new, smooth, glamorously tactile box (alas, no Brazilian) we no longer need to retain the scabby, saggy box that Virgin Media supplied us with many moons ago (and that now smells of wee). So I rang Richard Branson to inform him of this and one of his customer facing minions at first accepted my decision to ditch their TV package but then inevitably went into hard sell mode pointing out that the TV package I currently subscribe to means I get an £18 reduction on my Virgin Media phone bill (eh? First I’d heard of it!) and that if I wanted to just reduce my TV package to the “small size” I could retain a £5 reduction on my phone bill.
But I don’t need the cable TV service at all, I pointed out. I’ve disconnected it. I very patiently explained this to him twice before – sounding personally insulted and aggrieved – he finally agreed to acquiesce to my wishes though he truculently pointed out that when I made telephone calls from my Virgin Media phone line in future they will now increase the amount of my monthly bill by the cost of the call.
Really? Is that how it works? I never knew.
So now I have to ring a different number to book in the disposal engineer (my name for him) because, or course, the guy I spoke to can do everything but that for me apparently though hopefully the call won’t cost me money which will go onto my monthly phone bill. Heaven forbid.
So our old box’s days are numbered. I do, I admit, feel slightly dishonorable. Like I am betraying an old friend. Casting her out into the cold or if not into the cold then at least into the caverns of a vast Virgin warehouse full of old chapped boxes that nobody wants to finger anymore or indeed ever. I am plainly a heartless cad.
But all is not lost. Perusing the instruction manual that came with our new non-virgin box, it seems our new purring playmate can get the Yesterday channel. I can access Hitler p0rn after all!
Well in that case: Virgin smirgin. Auf wiedersehen pet and guten tag Adolf!
Don't worry you can get Television X on your new box too. Not that I would know.
Nota Bene: er.. thank you. I'll keep that for future, er, non-reference. Just in case somebody asks. Ahem.
4th paragraph from the end.
You went too far.
Crossed a line.
I'm still wincing.
... and once you've transferred your 'phone line back to BT or TalkTalk or any of the other people who keep sending me 'too good to miss' offers, you won't even have to pay Sir Richard's robber tariff. Do they really expect you to stay with them after that?
Hitler p0rn brings some woefully unpleasant images to mind. So thanks for that Steve. Tsk.
I couldn't live without mine now, so beware, when they go wrong and delete all your recorded programmes, you will cry. Or maybe that's just me?
I've never liked Branson..so rest assured, he'll be in there, fingering your box...
Rol: praise indeed.
The Dotterel: trouble is they're all much of a muchness really; same meat, different Bisto and all that. Funny thing is Karen and I rarely make calls from the phone anyway, preferring to use the ones at work... er, did I say that? No I didn't. Not at all.
Heather: fishnets and fokkers were made for each other. Trust me.
Goonerjamie: I could probably live without Rob Brydon if push came to shove.
The fly in the web: as long as he doesn't land his big hairy balloon in my backgarden I don't care.
Dont need to worry about the old girl,as baggy and worn out as she is, theres a jug eared fella with a funny voice and who looks like Shrek who lives somewhere in Cheshire who will gladly take her off your hands. He will even give her a proper servicing before he passes her on to John Terry or someone.
Anonymous: this is one hallway that Wayne could throw his sausage down without worrying he'll be given the (slow) clap.
I'm moving house soon and I think the thing I dread most is sorting the TV and phone and broadband.
Make all your calls from work and talk to old people lots : calls and endless drivle about the war all for free. I'm charging you for that advise.
Be careful the last time I watched German porn there was so much hair you had to use hedge clippers to get a clear view of the screen
Yes I admit that I too am an adherent of Hitler P0rN...
Good move to ditch the cable. How d'you think Sir Richard Branston-Pickle ended up so fabulously wealthy? Funny also how all the special offers only appear when you threaten to dump their over-priced, under-used service....
Mark: a home ain't a home until it's got broadband...!
Kelloggsville: no problem. I'll pay my direct debit. Just send me your bank account details.
Emma: herr Hitler indeed. But only if a bit of Aryan thatch tickles your fancy...
LöstJimmy: top show, old bean. Aces high and all that. Remembering how we gave Jerry a damned good hiding... good for the soul.
Curry Queen: treat 'em mean keep 'em keen. ;-)
And in a couple of years your boys will be filling the memory up with the rubbish they want to watch and you will be left with a portable in the kitchen - I speak from bitter experience and am now surfing electronic porn looking for a cheap recording digibox for the kitchen.
Don't get me started on Virgin Medi(a)ocre. I'm counting down the days till I can tell them where to shove their set-top box. And if I speak to one more person on the subcontinent called Wayne, I may just implode. They have a big office on my way to work and they transport their staff around in mini buses with 'Superstars on Board'. God, how embarrassing!
Hey don't knock the front feeding VCR, mine is on its way out and I will need to do a techno jump before Christmas
Alienne: over my dead body. The widescreen is mine! Mine I tell you!
Previously (Very) Lost in France: I bet they have their own cheerleaders too and "Rich Loves Me" badges.
Vicky: I wouldn't dream of knocking the good ol' VCR - in truth we've kept ours (so the little 'un can watch his Teletubbies videos. Oh joy).
Cable = so overrated.
And judging by the way you upgrade your phones, I'm not surprised you've updated your box.
Being Me: I have to admit the set top box tends to have pixellation moments far more frequently than the cable did but neither of them are perfect. And back in the good ol' days of analogue signals one good thunderstorm would put our telly on the blink all night. Some things never change!
Hitler Porn and the Onedin Line - I love the History channel!
Doubtless I will have the same reaction when I inform TalkTalk I am dumping them (the moment I can at the end of their highly sh***y service-free contract) in favour of the infinitely more useful Sky package now available which covers telly, phone AND internet for £20 a month.
Laura: £20 a month? That does sound very inviting but I'm diametrically opposed to ever having any kind of Murdochery in my house...
One has to have a decent telly. And one should use it to watch decent telly programs. Ricky Gervais however, is not. imho!
CJ: I wish you'd written that on my Kath & Kim post!
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