You can tell a lot about people

…from what they throw out.

On Saturday my immediate next door neighbours had a large, empty cardboard box outside their door.  It was for a 42” TV.  Yes, I did say 42 inch.  This is, obviously, stupidly large, but it’s particularly stupidly large given the size of the rooms in these flats.  There’s just no way they’re going to be able to get far enough away from the screen to be able to take it all in at once.  Watching TV is going to be like sitting too close to the front in the cinema – they’re going to have to actually turn their heads to follow conversations.  Personally, that would drive me mad in approximately 0.25 seconds.  Of course, I may be motivated by jealousy here, given that I have only a 15-year old 12” portable with a malfunctioning tube that means everything has a pink cast, apart from when the set’s been on for a couple of hours, and it starts to look like it’s filling up with a green mist.

Anyway, one of the things I know about my neighbours is that they have enough money (and a sufficient lack of sense) to buy a 42” Sony TV.  I also know that they have quite a cluttered flat, because shortly after they’d got rid of the empty TV box, they had to put a couple of bulky items out on the landing, either because they were throwing them out to make room for the TV, or possibly because they were re-arranging things to find room for it all.

And what were these large, bulky items that my neighbours considered to be of lesser importance than a massive new television?  An exercise bike, and a weightlifting bench with  weights.  ‘Sod getting fit,’ they’d obviously thought.  ‘From now on we’re going to spend our time sitting on our arses in front of the telly.’

It’s like The Simpsons, but in real life.

Also, they are less yellow.

Also, I am not Ned Flanders.

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6 Responses to You can tell a lot about people

  1. Lucy McGough says:

    You have talent.

  2. Astrid says:

    That was a funny read. I have a 25+-year-old, probably about 15 inch television, where all channels got mixed up and you can only fix it with the (broken) remote that I left over at my parents’ house in another city. I have enough money for a new TV, but since I don’t actually live in that home anymore and only visit every once in a while, I won’t waste my money on it yet. Resolved to buy myself a new TV when I get into a new long-term living place.

  3. Kapitano says:

    I am not Ned Flanders.

    Okilly-Dokilly.

    Yes, it’s a familiar story. I know someone who wanted to spent £50 max on a replacement for their B&W 12″ screen – and came back from the showroom with a £500 42″ plasma screen with 6 speakers. They’d “got carried away”.

    After 6 month it died – and would have taken £1000 to repair. So I gave him my old TV – and he used it mostly to play audio CDs on the DVD player.

    But I did get something in return. A rowing machine and an exercise bike! Not edged out by the TV – edged out by the other stuff he’d bought, including several tables from car boot sales. There were two weights benches on offer too … but I had no space for them.

  4. aethelreadtheunread says:

    Thanks for the comments.

    Lucy McGough – As do you. :o)

    Astrid – a 25 year old telly, that’s impressive! They obviously built things to last back then. :o)

    Kapitano – Well, i’ve never gone as much over the score as your friend did, but i’m not entirely innocent of the ‘Ooh fun stuff’ response when i go into places like TV shops. There’s something to be said for being broke (and having the world’s worst credit rating) after all… ;o)

    I’m intrigued – how many tables did your friend need? It seems slightly…interesting…to buy several. :o)

  5. Kapitano says:

    how many tables did your friend need?

    I don’t think need came into it. It was a matter of “I like this thing, so I’ll buy it and I’m sure it’ll come in useful one day.”

    So far this month he’s spent over £2000 on a laptop for when he eventually gets net access, a gym membership and dietary supplements. And did I mention he’s currently living in a one room attic and earns £100 a week?

    I’ve decided I’m just not involved anymore.

  6. aethelreadtheunread says:

    Hi Kapitano,

    Hmm, yes, that does seem like a rather worrying income to expenditure ratio. For what it’s worth, i think you’re right to not be involved – it’s the kind of area where people ultimately have to learn from their own mistakes, i think. You can always point him in the direction of the CAB later, should that prove necessary.

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