Tuesday, November 22, 2005

Due to technical difficulties beyond our control...

There's only a few of my readers who should remember the old Black & White test pattern on the TV so a little explanation is in order...
Many years ago, long before cable and satellite TV with continuous 24-7 broadcasting, TV stations would go off the air every night, usually after Johnny Carson or Dick Cavett show was over. The national anthem would be played then poof! No more signal from the station. The only thing it would transmit was the "test pattern" and a really obnoxious high-pitched tone to let all those waking up at 3 AM to turn off the TV because you fell asleep after Johnny's monologue again.
Other times it was to let the viewer know the station in question was having "technical difficulties" and would be on the air again shortly.
The latter is what happened to me yesterday. My always-connected high speed cable connection went tits-up on me around 10 AM yesterday morning and finally came back up around 3 PM today. It doesn't happen to often, maybe 4 times in the last year, but enough to make me hesitate getting VoIP telephone...
Anyway, I'm back and in rare form, so stay tuned to more stuff!
Copyright 2005 Thomas J Wolfenden

6 comments:

Courtney said...

Wow - the last time I remember that happening was when I was about 5 years old. It was such a bummer when there was no more TV - kind of like a signal that you should go to bed since there was nothing else to do. Thank God for new and improved cable television!

dasi said...

I remember the test pattern - on weekends it came on after Creature Feature and I was already freaked out enough...

BTW - sorry I've been keeping a low profile lately - Satan has been keeping us busy....!

Bev said...

"tits-up" - What the heck does that mean? I've never heard that term used before.

Kev said...

It means "flat on it's back," Bev - out of commission. I've heard it, but always forget to use it when times might call for it.

I always remembered to turn off the TV before it went off the air after watching Poltergeist. Come to think of it, I was awfully young to have a) watched that movie and b) been up that late anyways.

But I always loved the Air Force footage they played during the anthem.

Lora said...

Oh, the good ol' days...actually, we only have two local TV stations, no cable or dish, so our TV still goes off the air at about 1AM and still to the Nat'l Anthem. Thank God they haven't taken that away from us yet!

Welcome back, Tom, I was about to send a "Major Tom, this is Ground Control...are you out there?"

Ranger Tom said...

Cortney: I don't even have broadcast TV right now... Nothing on worth watching anyhow.

Dasi: Creature Feature? I remember that... All those old Japanese "B" horror flicks like Mothra & Rodan...

Bev: Kev summed it up, it was an old army saying when something was utterly and truly dead it was "Tits-up"... As in the supine position like a corpse.

Kev: But did you ever stand to the Anthem?

Lora: Everyone wants to promote me for some reason... You're the second one to do that. I'm happy being just good ol' RT