More funny than you can poke a stick at

night-television-tv-theme-machines.jpgA work colleague has a friend who, being without a TV remote, changes channels with a stick.

No kidding. He likes to watch telly in bed and wields the three-foot stick to change channels so he does not have to move too many muscles.

Can you imagine that? Have we become that sad?

Until today I never even knew that TV remotes were that big a deal. I read a newspaper advertisement trying to sell a TV which, it informed me in brackets, did not have a remote.

“Ha,” I said to my colleagues. “As if not having a remote would worry anyone?”

Um, I was wrong. According to my colleagues, it would deter a LOT of buyers. That’s when I was told about the guy with a stick.

I think that’s kind of funny but I accept that I am getting a tad long in the tooth and, well, I could be a victim of the generation gap. Maybe remotes are important these days.

I went to the gym today and my ears were assaulted with music there from a young man on the TV, whose sole lyrics in a whole song seemed to be: “I think about sex all day long. With you.” Yep, over and over and over and over again.

My advice to him would be: “Don’t worry, mate, it will pass. One day all you’ll spend all day long thinking about pizza. By yourself.”

Or maybe he will find himself lying in bed and thinking about how nice it would be to have his own stick with which to change the TV channel.

I was a child when television reception came to my town. We never had remotes then. Heck, we never even had a TV.

If we wanted to watch telly, we would either gather with the masses outside a department store window and watch whatever everyone else was watching, or go visit some long lost relatives who had embraced this wonderful new but expensive black and white technology.

My first remote came with a video recorder and it had a long cord.

Remotes that work their magic through thin air have only entered my life in recent years.

Remotes that work their magic through three feet of stick seem to have passed me by altogether.

But now I think about it, that guy might be on a winner.It is difficult to lose a three-foot stick as easily as you can sit on a tiny remote on the couch. You cannot stir your tea with a remote and still expect it to work. Sticks come in a range of lengths and colours and, best of all, they are cheap and do not need batteries.

I might even phone that advertiser and suggest he amend his ad.

Instead of saying: “TV (with no remote)”, why not “TV (with latest-model stick)”?


©July 8, 2004, John Martin. All Rights Reserved



If you need to find out how to turn teapot cosies into fashion accessories, this is the book for you.
This is a collection of funny columns that have appeared in various Australian newspapers and on John Martin’s website.
John Martin is better known these days as the writer of humorous mysteries but this is a nod to his past as a journalist.
If fashion isn’t your cup of tea, perhaps rats are. Find out how those beady little eyes live on in John Martin’s mind many years after he was marooned on a desert island. Or find out how Beethoven made a kerfuffle refuffle.

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