Posted by: Mark Nielsen | December 28, 2007

Peter Brady’s Wrinkles: 40% More Vivid With HDTV

Day after Christmas, we finally broke down and bought an HDTV. A 40″ Sony Bravia, 720p (1080 is overrated & overpriced… the improvement is not that noticeable over 720, which is the way most broadcast programs are shot and distributed anyway). It’s got great color processors, multiple connectivity, blah blah blah, …you don’t care about all the specs, but I do, thus I paid about 20% more for the bells and whistles and better overall engineering on the Sony (as opposed to a Magnavox or some middle-of-the-road brand). It set up pretty easily, looks great when watching a movie, just barely fits on our entertainment center, and now we’ve got that new 21st century problem: the destruction of our innocence about our favorite celebrities, as all their warts and wrinkles show up crystal-clear in HD.

Then came one of those early-stage “senior moments” (though I’m only 42). It went like this: while flipping channels and testing the new tv settings, we saw a promo for VH1’s “My Fair Brady” show. Sue asked me what it was, and while trying to explain, I could not for the life of me remember the name of the character Christopher Knight (now age 46) played on The Brady Bunch. Must be that whole “forgettable middle child” syndrome.  I remembered cooler-than-cool Greg, of course (aka Johnny Bravo … has anyone ironically given their band that name yet?). And little Bobby. And the girls. Even Alice’s boyfriend Floyd (Whoops. I mean Sam… I just looked it up. Sorry, Sam.) But until this morning, the name Peter just evaded me completely, hiding in the dark corners of my mind…. cobwebby corners which seem to be creeping steadily toward the middle of the main rooms lately.

I hate getting old. I now grunt when I bend over to pick something up. (I hate that!) I have the predictable hair growing in my ears, a few freakishly long eyebrow hairs, hair on my back. My hearing has changed slightly, and my night vision and ability to read in low light. I have arthritis in my knees, I can’t remember diddly, and my feet hurt constantly. And yet somehow I still have to contend with pimples, like some pathetic adolescent. That’s thanks to my oily, half-Italian skin, the main benefit of which is probably that I am not wrinkling as fast as your average WASP. Big deal.

So as 2007 slowly wends it way to an end, I hereby make the following resolutions: to savor some of Spencer’s chocolate cream Christmas pie from Benison’s Bakery while I can still taste it, to appreciate wrestling with my five-year-old on the bed before he gets big enough to pull my flabby old arm from its shoulder socket, and –when the opportunities arise– to take this decrepit mind and body out for a few more crazy, kicking-and-screaming, pushing-the-envelope spins around the block before I completely fall apart, eventually turning into mild-mannered superhero Paunchy Limping Suburban Bad Golfer Man, sometime around 2010 (otherwise known as the Eve of Armageddon).

Or I could try to get in shape in 2008? Naaaah. Sly Stallone’s already cornered the market on pathetic pumped-up has-been Italians trying to pretend they’re still twenty five. (Another Rambo? 20 years later? Is he kidding? What circle of hell did I wake up in after my long winter’s nap? And can we at least send him into Iraq to clean up that mess? He went to Afghanistan for Rambo 2, didn’t he?! And we all know how well THAT country is turning out (NOT) … but the Iraq surge is “working”, let’s not forget… ha!)

No sir. No exercising and eating right for me. The “raw” diet? Uh uh! I’d rather find a less taxing way to be boring and ridiculous.


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