Friday, 16 July 2010

Tales Of Incompetence And Woe

Last night I spent my first sleep cycle in the new flat.

It's pretty damn nice, all things considered. Lovely comfy bed, plenty of space. There were, of course, a few trials and tribulations to overcome, however.

I mentioned earlier that my bathroom had a leak that wasn't fixed by Monday lunchtime. Well, by Monday afternoon, I was assured that the leak itself was sorted, but that regrettably the plumber hadn't actually removed the water, since they lacked a mop. I wondered for a few days just what kind of plumber would fail to bring a mop whilst plugging a leak, but this has proven to be a side issue. The truly important question is: what kind of plumber would fail to plug a leak whilst plugging a leak? I've mopped up the floor in there twice now, and the water keeps coming back (it's all a bit too Hideo Nakata, to be perfectly frank). I've been forced to use the main bathroom instead, or at least that was the plan before I turned on the shower in there and discovered that, inevitably, it leaks.

Also, my rough estimate is that we made it through a third of the night before The Other Half broke the bed. Well, she's blaming me, since I was the one who was getting up to visit the (at the time) unflooded bathroom when the ugly crack was heard, but the dislodged slat was on her side, so the laws of physics back me up entirely, I think.

As is so often the case, however, the greatest disaster was entirely my own fault. I hesitate to tell this story at all, so idiotic does it make me seem, but it might be good for a laugh, and God knows I don't have time to think up anything else funny right now. About seven years ago my parents bought me a combination DVD/video recorder as a Christmas present. It served me entirely faithfully for about four years, before the DVD player started to break down after only a few minutes of running. Ever since then, we've just been using it for videos, and employing various Gooder-sourced gadgets to play discs.

Somehow, it never occurred to me until yesterday afternoon that the problem might be the Sky Box we put on top of it at around the same time. It was sitting, as it transpires, almost directly above the entirety of the ventilation grille - presumably overheating was to blame. Excited at this very, very late revelation, I took the DVD player over to the new flat, so that the Other Half and I would have something to do beyond tutting over the state of the en suite.

Sure enough, when set running in the new flat, the player performed perfectly, easily outdistancing its earlier run-time limit. Unfortunately, we still couldn't actually watch anything, because of some unidentified problem with the SCART link up. After fiddling around for a while, I tried the Wii, which came through no problem, and I by retracing my steps, I was able to finally get the DVD player to work.

For about 0.3 seconds. Flush with my success, I failed to keep adequate hold of the TV, which is the weight of a medium sized horse, I reckon, and it tipped off the chest of drawers upon which it was perched, landing upon the DVD player and pretty much detonating the latter machine's entire rear.

The TV itself was fine. I was hopeful that the DVD player might make it, too. After all, plenty of devices can withstand major abuse to their outer casings without any real effect upon the internal workings. I turned it off and on again (the shock of impact having rather flummoxed it), and was amazed to see it flash up its usual MENU message. I pressed PLAY, and watched as the counter progressed in the fashion one might expect. Somehow, it had come through OK!

Then, with care borne of bitter recent experience, I placed the SCART lead back into the television. A picture appeared! Of the right scene! In the right colours! With perfect sound!

All that ruined this technological marvel was the fact that the action on-screen, rather than taking place in the rectangle one would expect, was and is now being shown across a shape I can only describe as an angular butterfly. It's like I'm watching the image reflected in a funhouse mirror. I don't even understand how that could be possible, but that's where we are.

Anyway, this is a long-winded way of saying: still got an awful lot on.


Nemain said...

Who's this Other Half then? I need intel! ;)

Senior Spielbergo said...

Sounds to me that this is a result in a shift in weight distribution - in which case I have to agree with the other half - sounds like your fault. After all if she didn't move then clearly you must have vacated the bed at too greater speed. Less haste to the leaky bathroom I feel is required.