In the afternoon I drove to a Best Buy store and walked through their wonderland of TV screens. Gosh, TVs are impressively good these days. Of course they program very contrasty, heavily sharpened material so the images jump out at you. Anyway, many of their demo TVs had sound bars attached. And there was even a setup with ten different sound bars and you could in theory switch from one to another to compare. Only in theory, because three or four of the ten didn’t make any sound, broken or unplugged, and as for the others, someone — customers? bored salesman? — had turned the volume up all the way so when you switched to one, it blasted you and made heads turn across the store. Main problem, the item I’d decided from trawling the internets was the most interesting, a Yamaha one, was not in the store anywhere. Apparently Best Buy doesn’t stock them. (Nor did Fry’s.)
So I made some food and burned off quite a bit of programming from the backup on the DVR. One glob of DVR space is the folder of saved episodes of the last season of So You Think You Can Dance. There have been 15 seasons of that show, and Marian and I watched all of them together. It was our favorite TV show, and sharing it was a pleasure. For several of seasons, I left the episodes on the DVR to watch again. We’d play them back and select a few of the very best routines, the ones that made us say “Wow!”. These I would record off the DVR onto the computer, and from there (with several hours of work) make a compilation DVD.
Sound like a nerdy thing? Something one of Sheldon’s flatmates might do? Yeah. Let me check: in my file of recorded DVDs I have highlight discs of SYTYCD seasons 5, 6, 8, 10, 11, 12 and 13. Don’t know what happened to 7, 9, and 14. It is season 15 sitting on my DVR now.
This sounds like the slides all over again. DVDs take up a lot less space! But the issue is the same: I carefully curated imagery, stored it, only to never view it again. Before I resolve that, I want to think about about
Grief (good grief, again?)
So I played back an episode of Season 15 and got the strongest wave of grief I’ve had in days. Why? Part of the answer is a couple of paragraphs back: watching SYTYCD was a shared experience, and I’ll never share it again. But there’s another aspect. The words going through my mind were, “She loved this so much…” and it’s that which triggers the emotion. The same thing happens when I stop to look at her favorite azalea in bloom — a few days back, when I was showing Chuck around the house and was going to mention the azalea I couldn’t make my voice work. Something about realizing that here was something Marian loved, and that she can’t enjoy again, is just a very powerful inducer of grief.
Well, what about those DVDs of past seasons? Would I watch any of them again? Could I watch them — remembering that they were specifically the highlights she most enjoyed? And what about the current folder of season 15? Is there any point to re-watching those shows, or making a compilation from them? I think “no” to all. I’ll mull it a day or so then probably throw everything out.