This must have been the busiest holiday season we've had for a while. Both offsprings were with us as well as some Brisbane friends for New Year's eve. Last week I spent in Brisbane doing stuff of different kinds including buying some new hi fi gear - whacko!
Actually, only whacko up to a point as I have signally failed to hook it all up so it does the things it's supposed to. As I complained to the bloke in the electronics shop on whose mercy I cast myself this arvo, you used to be able to buy a gramophone and all the wiring was on the inside. Now you have HDMI and optical video and optical audio and who knows what else and you have to set up the equipment, trying to follow instructions where the individual words are in English but their sequencing and arrangement are such that it may as well be Greek, and when you fo reckon you've figured it out and try to program the machine, it's all in some arcane menu formula so that you're never quite sure if the bloody thing has done what it was you thought you had programmed it to do.
We'll try again tomorrow but if still no luck, we'll have to swallow that stupid male pride that overcomes us every time we fail to perform some task which, although contemporary in nature, takes us right back to the ability to kill a marauding beast with our bare hands and drag it back to the cave to feed the family, and go and pay an expert to do it. If you don't think this is distressingly repugnant to us, you must be female. Or possibly Gen Y.
I did manage - eventually - to get the new speakers hooked up and they (Monitor Audio Silver RS6's) are just brilliant, even though I have just now read on some hi fi forums about their alleged shortcomings. I can't hear no damn shortcomings and I paid $400 under RRP, so I'm pretty pleased. Now if I can just get the bloody DVD to play through the receiver and onto the TV, I can listen to all the Pink Floyd/David Gilmour DVDs I have in glorious proper stereo with lots of bass and watch them doing it at the same time. And the Eric Clapton DVDs that were slipped to me in a brown paper bag last week, to the bemusement of my fellow coffeeholics.
And I can listen to tennis players grunting, shrieking and moaning their way through the Australian Open. Back in the days when they had gramophones, top ranked tennis players used to be able to play without all this audible exertion. Lazy buggers.
The economic slowdown/crisis/insert appropriate noun here hit the VVB family today as offspring no2 lost her job. That she had only got the quals to do in December. Fortunately she has a second string to the bow but it brings it home how deep the crisis is hitting.
And now it's all about confidence, I keep reading. Surely someone's got a truckload of that somewhere? I need it to help me get through