Jewish World Review Feb. 27, 2003 / 25 Adar I, 5763
Yelling at the TV
http://www.NewsAndOpinion.com | Cromwell is my favorite inventor. He is the one who came up with the idea to put people on hold for 20 minutes and then cut them off before they get to speak to their party. The airline reservation people called him a modern-day Alexander Graham Bell.
So when he called me up the other day and told me to come over, I knew I would become a part of history.
Cromwell was in the cellar working on a large TV set.
"What do you think?"
"I think it is a nice television set."
"But this one is different. You can yell back at it."
"Wow. I've never seen a TV set that you could yell at."
"People have been dreaming of something like this for years. But no one knew how to do it. I came up with the idea to have two woofers, a digital receiver and an inverted thingamajig, which you don't plug into a wall. Who do you want to yell at?"
"How about Joe Millionaire?"
Cromwell hit his clicker. "Go," he said.
I screamed, "You may be a hunk, but you are a lying, cheating impersonator. And just because you chose a girl doesn't mean you're not going to lie and cheat and break her heart! Go away! I never want to see your face on TV again."
Evan Marriott, a.k.a. Joe Millionaire, didn't know where my voice was coming from, and later on I heard that the producers fired four technicians, because they had to blame somebody.
"Not bad," said. Cromwell. "But if you're going to yell at reality shows, you have to get more vitriol in your voice. … Have you ever wanted to yell back at politicians?"
"Of course. Doesn't everybody?"
"Have you ever tried to yell at President Bush?"
"Yes, but so that people don't think I only yell at Republican presidents, I have always wanted to talk back to President Clinton, the first Bush, Reagan and Jimmy Carter."
Kissinger came on CNN with the Capital Gang.
Cromwell said, "That is a tape of the show. Do you want to practice yelling at Kissinger?"
I said, "I've been yelling at him on the TV set for 20 years. It hasn't done any good."
"Now you can yell back at him for real if he decides to bomb Cambodia again."
"Cromwell, you are going to change the viewing habits of every American. You are also making it possible for people to let the steam out so they don't have to yell at their wives and children anymore."
"Would you like to yell at Michael Jackson?"
I told him honestly, "I wouldn't waste my breath."
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02/20/03: The fight for duct tape