No, Not My Remote

“Good morning fictitious character, figment of my imagination, I’m thinking of ditching cable, Netflix, and keeping Amazon Prime – not for the shows, for the free shipping.”

“Are you threatening me? What did I do to deserve no cable? And, Netflix too? They’re my two joys in life.”

“I can’t find anything I like until football season,” I said.

“Have you tried Ellen?”


“Have you tried The View?”


“Have you ever watched a show on Lifetime or Oxygen or QVC? or the Food Channel. You could learn a lot.”

“From the Food Channel?”

“No, from Lifetime or Oxygen. I know I can find something you like on cable or Netflix.”

“Never. Not until football season.”

“Let’s make a wager, Ray.”

“I have two questions first.”

“Go ahead. Can I have the remote while you’re asking?”

“No, the instructions that came with it said it had to be operated by a person with an XY chromosome. ┬áThere’s genetic research to support this theory.”

“Cute. What are your two questions?”

“One, why am I making a wager with a fictitious character? And, two, what’s the wager?”

“You have my head running in circles, Ray. You need to watch Frozen a half dozen times. It’s on the Disney Channel twenty times a week.”

“What’s Frozen?”

“I rest my case. I’m using a quote I picked up from a Disney Character, “I’m real if you believe I’m real.”

“Watch it. You’re tempting me to make a comment. What’s the wager? You know I love Vegas.”

“I’ll wager we can find a program we both like on either 325 cable channels, Netflix, or Amazon Prime.”

“What are we wagering?”

“You turn over control of the remote.”

“And, if you lose?”

“I’ll take a trip to Vegas and let you wallow in your blog all alone. Boring. Boring. Boring.”

Ten minutes later, whoever this character is, is sitting next to me on the couch. I have the remote in my right hand. My right arm stretched out, keeping the remote safely out of her reach.

“Let me hold the remote while you make us some popcorn. Don’t look at me like I’m nuts. You can write it in. Do I have to do everything for you? You can say, ‘She scoffed the popcorn and wanted more, then ask for a beer.'”

“I don’t drink beer.”

“That’s your problem, Pancho.”

“The name’s Ray.”

“I forget lots of things after a beer.”

Twenty-five minutes later we’ve scrolled through all the cable channels. No agreement. Thirty minutes after the twenty-five minutes (I did it this way for those who read every word), we exited Amazon with no agreement.

“Looks like you’re going to Vegas for a week. I’m a free man.”

“Not so fast. We have Netflix. And, I have an ace in the hole. You can hold the remote. Close your eyes. Let me move your arm and select a program. You’re an honest guy, Ray. You’re going to lose the wager when you open your eyes.”

I hear music. I hear voices. I love this show. I’ve seen the series a dozen times. It never gets old. How did she know?

“Your heart’s racing, Ray.”

“How did you know I love Frasier reruns?”

“Easy. You relate to Eddie (for the non-Frasier watchers – it’s Frasier’s dad’s intellectually challenged dog).

“When do I get the remote back?

Working things through in good faith is always a good move. It may take time, but in the end, both parties feel good about the process and the result.

Patience, perseverance, and a willingness to work together pay off.

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