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Into the 21st Century with Cable TV

Now that I’m 50, I can own up the fact that I’ve had all these many years of remembering watching the old black and white TVs, like the Zenith floor model console we had back in Cleveland when I was growing up. I think we had one that sat on a table too, but we only had one TV at a time in the house, as I distinctly remember sitting in the den on Traymore Road in University Heights watching the old black and white TV with “rabbit ears” for antenna. Remember rabbit ears?

I remember watching Ed Sullivan with the latest talent and the Edge of Night soap opera. It was the first soap I watched regularly. According to “TV Acres:”

THE EDGE OF NIGHT/CBS/ABC/1956-84 was the first daytime mystery melodrama, meant as a takeoff of the classic Perry Mason mysteries with emphasis on crime/murder themes. The series was canceled after 7200 episodes.

TV Acres also had some other firsts:

ALL MY CHILDREN/ABC/1970+ was the first daytime serial geared specifically toward a college age viewing audience. Premiering January 5, 1970, it expanded from 30 to 60 minutes in length on April 25, 1977. The series was created by Agnes Eckhardt Nixon. ALL MY CHILDREN & GUIDING LIGHT headed for Caribbean remote locations in 1978, starting a trend away from the claustrophobic studio sets to more exotic foreign locales. Following suit AS THE WORLD TURNS (CBS) went to Greece, while ONE LIFE TO LIVE (ABC) went to France.

I distinctly remember the Edge of Night and the melodramatic way it was announced with a veiled, sinister voice.

I became a devotee of All My Children in the 1990s and that habit wasn’t broken until 2008, when I decided the plot was so predictable that my aide Terry could tell me weeks ahead of time what would happen next. Actually, she called it “lame.”

Now, fast forward to 2010 with hundreds of channels, high definition digital, rewind and fast forward on live transmissions and DVRs that are really computers in your cable box.

About ten days ago, as we were having trouble with TV transmission, we had a visit from Time Warner technician Dave Pierce who did a thorough revamp of our ten-year-old cable installation and replaced all the various connections that were giving us problems. Dave took the time to check outdoor connections on the house, took a ladder and checked connections on the cable lines on the street and put a meter on the interior wiring to make sure we had a proper signal throughout the house.

I tell you all this because both Herman and I were so pleased with Dave’s patience and thoroughness to detail to make sure we had the best reception possible. He even told us about upcoming software changes in the system that would mean we could access either DVR from separate locations to see what was recorded there.

The bottom line, guys, is that Dave went the extra mile to spend two and a half hours making sure another technician wouldn’t have to come back and redo any of the connection work.

So, thanks Dave Pierce for making the transition from analog to the digital world of entertainment a smooth ride.

About Kathryn Spira

Kathryn Spira, a native of Cleveland, OH who pursued an acting career in NYC and Los Angeles, now pursues freelance writing from Caroga Lake in Fulton County, New York. Previous columns may be accessed at her web site