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Wednesday, February 15, 2006


IM'd behind my back:

doctor_bean: how's my favorite Milwaukee internist holding up?

Mrs Balabusta: he's still pining for his HDTV

doctor_bean: bozo. I told him to give up on that.

doctor_bean: i'm on your side, just so you know.

Mrs Balabusta: you can feel free to tell him again

Mrs Balabusta: Here are the talking points:

Mrs Balabusta: 1 - you already have a really nice TV

Mrs Balabusta: 2 - You are only in the basement 30 minutes a day, an hour tops

Mrs Balabusta: 3 - the kids play down there, and they could break it or cause an accident

doctor_bean: I'm taking notes. go on...

Mrs Balabusta: 4 - You know the price of those things is going to be coming down like a rock this christmas (or summer) (or next month)

Mrs Balabusta: 5 - I don't think they are all they are cracked up to be, there aren't that many programs in HD yet

Mrs Balabusta: 6 - (feel free to improvise)

Mrs Balabusta: 7 - repeat as necessary ( see item #1)

Mrs Balabusta: 8 - I thought you were going to get a new car this summer

doctor_bean: This stuff is great.

doctor_bean: I suppose if I just email him this exchange that would make it less effective right?

Mrs Balabusta: right

doctor_bean: I'll have to find some more subtle way to get him the info

doctor_bean: perhaps a post on one of the 19 blogs he's writing for right now....

Mrs Balabusta: I have already given him the same conversations less subtlely

doctor_bean: Drug rep lunch. Gotta go. Happy monday.

doctor_bean: Big kiss to Mark from me!

Mrs Balabusta: drug lunch??

Mrs Balabusta: most people have food you know

doctor_bean: mmmm!

doctor_bean: we're not eating drug reps....

Mrs Balabusta: Where does that get fun?

doctor_bean: (a) it's free (b) attractive people are around while I eat (c) it's free

Mrs Balabusta: so the attractive people are watching you eat and nod alot

doctor_bean: exactly!

Mrs Balabusta: oh yeah, and if mark hangs out long enough, maybe a drug company will buy him an HDTV if he prescribes enough Risperdal

Mrs Balabusta: or Fosamax

doctor_bean: excellent point. really going now. g'bye.

Mrs Balabusta: you know you have to sit up for half an hour after the fosamax, that's where the TV comes in

Mrs Balabusta: bye

So how did I get my hands on this exchange, you may be wondering? It seems Dr. Bean is a double-agent...


Mirty said...

Sneaky, sneaky. My husband wants an HDTV too. Ain't no way.

Silly boys.

Jack's Shack said...

I am getting one. It is going to just magically appear one day. Due to its large size there will only be one person in the house who is big enough to move it.

I'll give you a hint who that person is. Name rhymes with 'Back' as in I'll be right back with a sandwich and chips so that I can watch the game.

Mrs. Balabusta said...

Mirty's got game!

Jack: Well, it's been nice knowing you, (not really). Just let us know where to send the flowers.

Dr. Bean: That was not so nice Dr. Bean. I got somethin for you right here with your name on it--as my daughter says -- that was some do-not-forgive action. You have undermined the cause.

Just for that, I'm not going to invite you to see the Transporter 2.

Eli said...

I would wait at least another year since there are still some tchnical issues.
It seems that many current HDVT sets will have problems with the next generation of DVD, esp. with their content protection schemes (there, I put in enough thec-speak to convince you I know what I'm talking about!).
My advice is wait.

Eli said...

Oh, and Mrs. Balabusta, you owe me one...

Robbie said...

PT if you need someone to take the hour's drive up north to help move in the sure-to-be-heavy tv, lemme know.

Every man deserves an HDTV. It's almost a birthright.

Doctor Bean said...

Oh, no! I’ve ruined everything. Nothing left to do but to find the sloppiest way to commit suicide.

Ger Tzadik said...

I love mine. The benefits of being single with a good job. I can buy toys to my heart's content.

PsychoToddler said...

Guys, gals...look, you got me all wrong!

This is purely a health issue! Don't see it?

I decided last year that I NEED TO EXERCISE. And between my bad back and my poor coordination, I reasoned that the only thing that would really work for me is one of those fancy exercise bikes.

But Mrs. B. FLATLY refused to allow me to put it in our bedroom, where I could watch my crappy sci-fi TV shows in peace while I exercise. So it's in the basement where the kids are.

Now, it's true, I do have a 20" standard TV down there with a DVD player. But it's almost SQUARE! You can't watch a decent widescreen movie on that set and still make out any details, especially from the distance I am forced to keep my bike from the TV.

And no self-respecting cinephile would watch a movie in Pan and Scan.

Uh-uh. Just not done. You're missing half the picture! I'm a firm believer in preserving the artistic integrity of the filmmaker! No compromise on that!

So I'm stuck watching this show about the size of a postage stamp from across the room on my current TV.

Now, if I had a modest sized HDTV...wide screen...well, here, see for yourself. Here's a comparison of Mrs. B's favorite movie, The Transporter 2, first on our 20" square TV, then on a 30" WIDESCREEN HDTV.

As you can see, there's no need to squint at that set, which will lead to less eyestrain, fewer headaches, and less neck and back pain.


PsychoToddler said...


Halfnutcase said...


PsychoToddler said...

really which part?

Halfnutcase said...

PsychoToddler said...

and i repeat, "really?"

personaly i really don't see the use in the things, wait a little till the price goes down.

Mrs. Balabusta said...

First of all, Eli and Half nuts got game!

The bike is not going in the bedroom. That is very bad Feng Shung. There is already a weight bench and an exercise ball in the bedroom, if anyone is interested.

The PT is definitely worth an HDTV, in fact he is worth a 54# LCD screen HDTV. Also, he is worth more dead than alive, but I digress..

The point is we don't measure what someone is worth by their possessions or the size of their, ahem, screen.

Also, the 20" TV in the basement, although it is square, is above standard. We had to upgrade when we got the XBOX to something with a flat, no glare screen and digitial inputs. Also inputing to this TV is the DirecTV box, the DVD player, with slo-mo for watching viper dogfights on Battlestar Galactica, and a VHS player, (I don't know what that is for anymore).

What we don't have in the basement is a place to sit. There are the desk chairs, the exercise bike, and my ironing table, which I do, ahem, standing up. Besides the eloquently above stated reasons, I think there is something, how do you say? Ah yes, -moronic- about buying a $900 TV with a $200 stand for a room that has no chairs?

Call me old fashioned. There is more to love and marriage than wide screen TV's, and that's not high definition, that's MY definition!

wanderer said...

I'm on PT's side with this one. The prices have come done significantly, you can get a nice 32" Sony CRT HDTV now for less than $1K. LCD's are a little more and then there are the glorious plasmas. There is plenty of HDTV programming. There are no changes in the HD technology coming out, its the DVD players that are going to change and they will have to be compatible.

At Best Buy and Circuit City (do they have those in Milwaukee?) you can get them interest free for like 2 years.

PT listen to your heart and don't make up some cackamamie story about your health. You NEED gadgets, you NEED an HDTV. Mrs. Balabusta does too - she just doesn't know it yet (or won't admit it!). Get one anyway, it serves her right for IM'ing with Doc Bean about this behind your back... Just be sure and buy a pair of deep recliners with drink holders for you and her to share while watching your new millions and millions of pixels.

parcequilfaut said...

I don't watch TV.
Go on. Shoot me. I don't. I watch videos. My DVD player hasn't been hooked up in eight months. I don't have cable. (Cable internet is another matter, and when they finally get over it and create the Law & Order Channel, I'll get cable.)

But I do know that Risperdal is the devil and it wouldn't surprise me one bit if the drug reps were bribing docs with such things to prescribe it. Did I say bribing? I meant "giving away out of the goodness of their hearts." Silly me.

Ger Tzadik said...

I take it Mrs. B isn't a sports fan. 5 minutes of HD sports heaven is all anyone needs. It's harder to convince people with movies because not much can compare to the real big screen.

Doctor Bean said...

Everybody have fun tonight.
Everybody Feng Shung tonight.

Eli said...

PT, I'm really sorry, but you did not listen to me, you are forcing me to do this, here read for yourself.

Is that really HDTV your watching?

This one is about current high-end display cards, but you can have the same thing with a TV, Basically if the DVD does not get the right encryptuion key it will give you a reduced quality picture,
Right now there are no such DVDs in the market so they don't put the key in your card....

Imagine how foolish you will feel whan Mrs. B says "I told you so!(TM)" after your shiney new HDVD gives you a poor picture with your `old` HDTV. (4 months old actually...)

There are unresolved SOFTWARE issues, I would not believe that a current HDTV workes with Blue-ray or HDVD untill they can show you it working in the store.

(you can let her win this time to earn points for when it's really worth it)

Jack's Shack said...

Just send Mrs. B on another trip. While she is out you can get a nice unit that looks just like a big medicine cabinet. Tell her the Merck rep left it for you.

Kiwi the Geek said...

Give me a break!

Cro-magnon man should be impressed with any TV at all. Color TV? That should entertain him for the rest of the age!

If you're only downstairs for a half-hour at a time, why do you need to watch DVDs? A sci-fi TV show lasts long enough, and then you can go upstairs by the big TV and watch a movie in comfort.

And what sense would it make to buy a small HDTV for the basement, when in a few years you could buy a huge fancy one to replace your main TV?

And why do you need TV anyway, when you have the PT kids around? Aren't they good enough entertainment?

Your eyestrain trouble would be solved if you got a magazine/book holder that attaches to the exercise bike. That would also be more educational.

And finally, when the snow melts, you can ride a Real Bike out in the big blue room, and see the beauty that HDTV can only approximate.

(For whatever reason, Beloved hasn't mentioned a desire for HDTV, and I will personally dismember the man who awakens his lust. I never disturb him during sportscasts, and he better not ask for more.)

PsychoToddler said...

First of all, I'm going to ignore everyone except Ger Tzedek. And wanderer--you da man! Especially ignoring you, Dr. Bean, you're already in hot water with Mrs. B. and making fun of her malapropism isn't scoring you any points.

Ger, you got us backwards. I HATE sports. But Mrs. B. watches every frikken Packer game. That's probably worth a post by itself.

I don't care if there aren't many HDTV shows being broadcast. The only TV show I watch is Battlestar Galactica and I TiVo it.

I want the HDTV for two purposes:

1. To watch my widescreen DVD movies while I exercise (or otherwise)

2. For videogaming.

I could be pursuaded to wait until next year, however Mrs. B. gave away our upstairs TV to her Grandfather, so the original plan was to move this one up there.

But I can see the value of buying a cheapy for upstairs and getting something nice for downstairs next year.

cruisin-mom said...

Get the t.v. and the chairs...see, win/win...everyone is happy.
(listen to me, I know how to shoot)

Kiwi the Geek said...

Except for the power company, and the phone company, and the bank that holds their mortgage, and the kids' schools...especially the kids' schools...

Mrs. Balabusta said...

Wanderer -

How'd you like your teeth surgically removed - through your eye sockets?

Ger - I do not watch basketball. And I fall asleep during baseball, but I think the rest of the country does too.

Football, is another story, I do try to hold it to 2 games a week, the Packer game, and Monday night if it's a good game, if I think Monday Night is gonna suck, I'll watch the Bears on Sunday.

In Technicolor.

PsychoToddler said...

Here's a nice article I found via one of Eli's links. BTW why I should take advice from a guy who can't even figure out how to make hyperlinks is beyond me.

Basically, within the next few years, we will have to buy converters for our standard TV's to downgrade the broadcast signals to lower quality standard signals. They will stop broadcasting standard TV signals by 2009, and they will stop selling standard TV's (or TVs that use standard tuners) in 2007.

And by March of this year, all big TV's will have to have HD tuners on board.

So we may save a little now, but we'd have to pony up more money within a few years, and it will still look like cwap.

Ger Tzadik said...

PT: Ok fine, I got it backwards, but still...I hand you the tools build a shed and you went and baked a cake with them. Let's review:

I say: Sports in HD can convince any fan HD is worth it.
You say: Yeah but I don't like sports, she does!

I say again: HD sports! Espcially football! Every football game is in HD now, all the time. Every single game this year in the NFL was broadcast in HD. If she has to exert willpower to keep to 2 games a week, you have spotted a chink in the armor!

[Insert Sun Tzu quote here]

Ezzie said...

I'm on PT's side on this, but how about a compromise? (Yes? Good!)

Get a good HDTV Projector! Much cheaper, less to worry about breaking, can move it around... and you can put it on an entire wall. A friend has one in his room - a bunch of guys have said "Once you've seen something at Mo's, nothing else seems real anymore."

Nu, PT? Mrs. B? How about it? (And paint a wall white, it's probably better.)

Word verification: ohdeunww

"O, High Definition, even u no who wants"

Ger Tzadik said...

Good job Ezzie, I should have suggested the same thing. I have a projector myself. 84" high def TV, a fraction of the cost of the big systems. The problem is 1) the bulbs burn out every few years. 2) the bulbs are expensive. (typically $300-500). Still, if you have a big wall and a darkish room, you can get a 120" projector for the same price as a 40" regular one.

(Word verif: mrphuk)

PsychoToddler said...

One thing our house does not have a lot of is white wall space.

Plus those projectors are still pretty expensive.

I can get a 30" Samsung CRT HDTV for $900 ($800 when I actually wanted to buy it, but sale's over).

Doctor Bean said...

Ay caramba! I have put my foot in it again. Instead of clicking the “Publish” button, why won’t I learn to just shut up and hit myself repeatedly about the face and neck with my wireless keyboard? My behavior makes me nauseated. I am most abjectly contrite. I hate myself. I don’t deserve friends like PT and Mrs. B. For partial penance, I am lying down on my desk and putting as many office supplies as I can in my nose.

PsychoToddler said...

For partial penance, I am lying down on my desk and putting as many office supplies as I can in my nose.

Pictures. We need to see pictures.

wanderer said...

Thank you Doctor Bean - for getting me involved in this - I am now both edentulous and eyeless. Then again, I didn't HAVE to comment.

But I did!

Mrs. B - come on, I even suggested he get the his and hers movie reclining seats with the cup holders. Every gal wants those!

Ezzie - keep in mind that by siding with PT you are now risking both your teeth and your eyes. I lost mine, but luckily I can still type by hearing the sound of the keys.

Finally more technostuff. The issue is that all broadcast signals are supposed to be going digital in 2009. The signal is not being "downgraded." To my knowledge it is only the cheapo TVs these days that can't handle digital, the current HDTVs can handle it.

Bottom line - get the Samsung (or a comparable Sony). Heck I'll even throw in 50 bucks for the cause if it'll help. I like you (both) that much! Still want to dismember me, Mrs. B?

cruisin-mom said...

I don't know P.T...I'd be afraid, very afraid of Mrs. B. She knows how to remove teeth through eye sockets.
I don't even think Sir Lawrence Olivier was able to do that to Dustin Hoffman.

Kiwi the Geek said...

Mrs. B, I don't know how any self-respecting Packer fan can fail to hate the Bears. And the Vikings, but they're not really an issue down there.

Jack's Shack said...

If only the Packers were a real team and not semipro.

Mrs. Balabusta said...

Jack - You are so far in the hole a 20' ladder wouldn't get you to the sewer line! The Packers were pro when you were making poopie in your diaper, and as far as I can tell, not much has changed there either.

As far as Ger goes, and for a single guy I would guess not that far, I submit that he has more toys than we will ever have. On the other hand, we have more kids and more tuition and probably pay more for car insurance that he does. I wish you joy.

But back to Kiwi and football, I didn't say I cheer for the Bears, I say I watch the Bears, usually I cheer for the other side, unless they are both in our division. I can't ever cheer for the Vikings. Right now the smell from Minnesota is so bad, Nebraska is thinking about relocating.

As far as the Wanderer putting in $50 - whose legs do I have to break? Anyway, feel free, the PT's birthday is in August.

I think we have a consensus though with the cheapy TV in the bedroom. According to my Feng Shwue consultant that is okay,-

(Beanie - just give me a reason......)

Ralphie said...

PT - Shh! I just bought a 32" Westinghouse LCD HDTV at Best Buy for $700! Keep in mind, this is bottom-of-the-line stuff - 780p, not that new fancy 1080p (although you can get some 1080 interlaced, whatever that means). It is great! I have never bought anything like this before and I was pretty sure I would return it within the allotted 30 days... but then I plugged it in and there's no going back. And I'm just using regular ol' rabbit ears, the same ones I had with the previous set. Only now I get all these other channels that my dumb ol' tube TV couldn't see. Granted, they don't offer much in terms of content, but it's still pretty cool.

Yes, some shows not broadcast in HD look a little crummy - but not terrible. Also, your DVD picture will be larger simply because the screen is larger, but if you choose to fill the whole screen with the picture it will look a little stretched out, because the ratios of film and widescreen TVs (well, this one at least, but it looked like all the rest of 'em) aren't the same. I hear that if I upgrade the cables I use to connect my DVD player to the TV, it might look better...

Oh, yeah, and your current tivo won't record in HD so recording BSG won't do you much good...

But hey it's still worth it! And Best Buy has a deal with 18 months no interest - that's, like, $42 a month. I say go for it!

Um, but please don't tell Mrs. B. I've never met her yet I fear her. And don't tell Bean, either - i hear that he's a tattletale.

PsychoToddler said...

Ralphie: ahem