If Obstetricians Ran The Cable Company

This originally ran in The Compleat Mother in 2004 (I think.) They never put it online, so I’m going to do it.

By the way, in case you haven’t noticed it yet after 218 weblog entries, I tend to have strong opinions and I’m just a trifle sarcastic. Really!

If Obstetricians Ran The Cable Company

“UnicableSystem, may I help you?”

“Yes, I’d like to sign up for basic cable.”

“Certainly, sir. That will be $79.95 a month. That includes the local networks, the first tier of cable channels, and all the premium channels, including five versions of HBO, Starz, eight foreign language movie channels…”

“But I don’t want the premium channels. I just want basic cable.”

“Sir, it is our experience that someday you may want to watch a premium channel, so we bundle everything together.”

“But I don’t speak any foreign languages, so giving me movies in French or Russian –”

“You may learn those languages someday. Trust us on this.”

“But eighty dollars a month is quite a lot.”

“It’s worth it to have the peace of mind from knowing you have the very best entertainment.”

“I guess so. When can you turn it on?”

“First we’ll have to send a technician out to your house to install a cable box and test your television. If your television meets all our requirements, then we’ll get you started on your programming.”

“And if there’s something wrong with my television, can you fix it?”

“No, most of the time we can’t. We can, however, wish you better luck in buying a new television. We’ll come to your house about every month or so to make sure that your television is still up to our standards. We’ll also make sure that your furniture meets our requirements.”

“My furniture?”

“Yes, sir. If you’re literally on the edge of your seat watching an exciting sports competition, we don’t want to risk that you’ll fall off the edge.”

“Don’t you think that’s a little far-fetched?”

“A layman may think so, but it could happen, and we want to be prepared. We will also install mattresses around the viewing area to cushion you should you fall over.”

“What if I just lie on the floor to watch television?”

“What? That’s such an unnatural viewing position! Plus, it makes it difficult for our technicians to make sure you’re watching correctly.”

“Your technicians watch me watching television?”

“Well naturally! How else could we make sure you’re not sitting so close to the television that you’ll ruin your eyeballs?”

“That’s really not –”

“Of course, that’s not so much of a problem any longer, now that we’re mounting the televisions on the ceilings.”

“You’re going to bolt my television to the ceiling?”

“We’ve found it prevents unnecessary channel changes.”

“You know, I don’t think I like all of these precautions.”

“You would think of jeopardizing your entertainment?”

“You’re taking all the enjoyment out of watching television!”

“And you, sir, are running unnecessary risks if you don’t do everything we say! We are entertainment professionals, and we know everything that can happen. It’s people like you who make our industry so difficult. Television is not meant to be enjoyed — it’s just something to get through.”

“It’s not supposed to be enjoyed?”

“Quit thinking of television as anything more than a means to an end. In fact, our most satisfied customers have requested the all-in-one cable package, in which we have them come to our facility, where we anesthetize them and then play an entire feature on HBO, shutting it off before they awaken. It’s really for the best that way–they know they cannot possibly view anything which might offend them.”

“But there are things we can do so that we’re not offended by what we watch. We can change channels, or read reviews–”

“Entirely too much work, sir. Now, you do understand that you’ll have to keep the television off for 23 hours a day.”

“What? Eighty dollars a month and I can’t even watch it?”

“You’d risk burning out your television set if you watched whenever you wanted. The average person watches one hour of television a day. That’s why we’ll make sure you watch exactly sixty minutes of television every day–no more, no less. So, when do you want to schedule your installation and be fitted for your anti-radiation goggles?”

“Forget it. I think I’m going to head to the library instead.” *click*

“Talk about backward. If he gets eye-strain, he deserves it, the wacko.”


  1. anne

    I’m laughing out loud! So true, so true!