Thursday, October 15, 2009

One problem just leads to the professionals, we need help!

     Sometimes when you think you have found a solution to a problem, actually, you have just created a bigger one.  Such is the case with Mr. Big and the TV.  As you may recall, Biggie lost his TV privileges because he was staying up all night to watch old westerns, and it made him grumpy the next day. I gave him a 40 day treatment plan to cure his addiction, after which he would return to his well-behaved, pampered poodle status and his privileges would be restored.
     As part of the program, he had to come straight up to bed each night when Sissey and I retired for the evening.  He'd been extremely obedient lately, scampering right up without even being called.  Even my dad had noticed, commenting that although he missed having Mr. Big as his "pardner" during the late night western-a-thons, he sure was scooting right off to bed like a good little doggie.
     In the meantime, Pop (as she calls her grandfather) decided that Sissey really needed to have cable installed in her bedroom upstairs.  She had been watching DVD's on her computer, but the sound was scratchy, the selection limited, and the quality poor.  He also secretly knew that he was a TV hog who was not about to share his remote- even with the grandkids, and that she preferred to watch programs with the sound on. He called the cable company on Monday and had a line run up to her room. (Editorial note: I had to wait for my sixteenth birthday just to get a phone installed in my bedroom; asking for a TV was out of the question, cable unheard of, and getting something on a Monday just didn't happen. Ever.)
     But Hallelujah! and clap your hands, she now got over a hundred channels, in color, and with full volume!! That was one happy little camper upstairs, fully aware that grandparents were a wonderful part of God's creation.
      That is where the good intentions started to go bad, and solutions mutated into problems. 
      I knew Pop was only doing what grandparents did best, spoiling the grandkids in ways that made the parent's jaw drop and ask," Where was that fella when I was growing up?", and it sure was working for Sissey. She came by her love of TV in the natural way, through DNA, from both her father and her grandfather, and this was making her college life rock!
     She loved that TV so much that she left it on all night.  I would wake up in the morning and hear it blaring away at full blast, with Sissey giving it some strong competition in the snoring department. I also noticed that Biggie was no longer sleeping in my bed.  He started out each night like a good little doggie, going straight to bed, obediantly finishing out his TV restriction for bad behaviour, giving me furry little night-night kisses before we would fall asleep. But when I woke up, Biggie was gone.
     It didn't take me many nights to figure out I'd been punked. I went straight to Sissey's room this morning and saw a little white fluff sticking out from under her covers. Pulling the blankets back, I found Biggie snoring as hard as Sissey, both exhausted after their late night entertainment. It seems that after I fell asleep,  Biggie had been hopping off the bed, sneaking out of my room, and running over to Sissey's. The two of them were having  movie marathons, all night premieres,  regular cable orgies. I always knew poodles were smart, but this five pound genius had figured out a way to beat the system. He was escaping each evening to feed his addiction, secretly, silently, in the dark of night. How sad, how very, very sad.
     "He's not really breaking his restriction," Sissey informed me, "because we aren't watching westerns." Oh really?  They were into "I Love Lucy" reruns at the moment, so technically, he hadn't fallen off the western wagon, but I wasn't falling for that comedy routine.
      So this morning, I had to haul a comatose nineteen year old and a pooped poodle down the steps, with both of them moaning and groaning, and I'm wondering how in the world did this entire family become so addicted to TV that even the dog can't tear himself away? We're in need of professional help, so I'm taking drastic action and doing the only thing possible: I'm calling Dr. Phil.  Make sure you watch your TV tomorrow...we may be on.

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