September 3rd, 2010

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Adventures in Appliance Purchasing

So yesterday I bought a TV.

I was thinking I just wanted something basic - 13  - 15 inch, cheap as I could get it, because, well, I'm more used to being broke than having money and I didn't want to spend a lot and go back to being broke so quick. But, I most definitely wanted a television of my own. I like to watch the news in the morning and I almost never want to talk to anyone while I'm watching it. I get up early so I have time to make myself sociable and not cranky before I have to go to work. Thus, I need a TV in my own room to avoid accidentally killing anyone who tries to speak to my while I'm watching Good Morning America.

Anyhow, I went to Best Buy, thinking, usually when I go there broke the staff swarm me like blue-shirted flies. Surely with money in hand, they'll do that too, right?


I stood in front of the TV section for the longest time, looking at boxes and shelf tags, waiting for someone who works there to walk by. Two did, but they were either helping someone else, or just really stinkin' oblivious to the fact that I had money to spend. When I went looking for someone, I couldn't find anyone. So, I figured if I was going to be ignored, I should go to the Target in that same plaza because, well, I don't expect anyone at Target to be helpful. I use to work there, so I'm familiar with the standard to ignore and plead ignorance over any and all products.

Normally I don't like to have help in stores. Mostly because I don't want to make awkward small talk. But considering I was buying an appliance, I had questions. Namely, do I need fancy cables or other items to make this TV work now that the over-air signal is digital? 

My dad had told me a dozen times or more that if I was going to buy a flat screen, I needed to buy one that was at least 1080p. I don't really know what that means, exactly (I have something of an idea it's about picture quality), so I had that as something I could aim for. I saw plenty of affordable TVs that were 720, but, ehh, none of them made me say, "Yup, that's it, I want that one."

Honestly, I think I only found my TV because, much like a fish to a shiny object, I was attracted to the box. It was small, slim, and had an easy carry handle.

It wasn't outrageously expensive. It had lots of "green technology" lingo printed on the small and easy to carry box. There wasn't one on display, so there was no shelf tag I could pretend to consult like I knew what I was buying. Thus, I was forced to make awkward small talk.

It went like this:

Me (seeing G, former coworker from this particular Target): Hi, I was wondering if you know anything about this TV. I don't see one out, so...
G (thankfully does not recognize me): There's not one out? Let me see.
G walks over to the TV wall.
G: Yeah, there's none of those out.
Me: I know, that's why I'm wondering if you know anything about this brand.
G: No, we don't have those out.
Me: Yeah, but is it a good brand in general? Any complaints or anything?
G: Not that I know of, but we don't have those out like I said.
Me (changing tactics): For this TV are there any cables I'd need just to watch digital TV or hook it up to a DVD player. I can't tell based on the box.
G: Well, what's printed on the box?
Me (I hold up box): Better for the enviornment!
G: Oh, well, all of our TVs have digital recievers.
Me: Okay, so I can just plug it in and watch TV?
G: I don't know. Where do you live?
Me: JP
G: Where's that?
Me: About 4 miles from here.
G: Oh. Yeah? You oughta be fine.
Me: Great, thanks.
G walks away. Then he comes back.
G: You might need an antenna.
G proceeds to tell me long-winded story about how his "buddy" needs an antenna and he does not.
Me: Okay, so where are they?
G: You just need an antenna.
Me: I meant, where in this store can I find one?
G: We might not have any, the college kids just wiped us out.
Me: Great.

Which is all to say that I now own a 22-inch flat screen TV. It's about 1/2 an inch thick, except for where the connections are in the back, where it's about an inch and half. Meaning it weights about 1/6th of my old 13 inch TV. It's so pretty.