WE GOT our first colour television in 1984 - less than 30 years ago.
I was reminded of this after I heard a B&B in the Lakes was hailing ‘colour televisions in all rooms’ like some revolutionary advance in en-suite luxury.
People forget that having a colour television used to rank as a ‘big deal’.
For us, it meant our heavy black and white portable was deliriously gifted to us children and then carried on the shoulders like an African king to my sister’s room; prompting my first proper opposition to the nepotism of the household hierarchy.
Back then, shops didn't seem to stock television stands for bedrooms, either.
The prevailing business wisdom of the day must have been ‘bedrooms are for sleeping in, tellies in there will never catch on’.
So our portable black and white was perched perilously on top of her wardrobe. It was rigged up with a lethal plug/extension lead combo which used to hang down at garrotting height – pimp my crib.
All this, combined with a totally ineffectual circular aerial, (later replaced by a steel coat-hanger), meant I didn't watch too much TV.
Remotes were luxuries back then too. You earned your stripes in the field, son - getting off your bum and changing channels by hand.
Despite endless tuning in, we never managed to locate the fabled Channel Four in the snowstorms of white noise.
Up until five years ago, Nana was stoically renting her telly from Radio Rentals like some kind of martyr to the last century.
I’m having similar conversations with mum as I try to incrementally persuade her to get a new flat-screen, wide-screen TV.
“There’s nothing wrong with my telly,” she fiercely argues, and she’s right. I forget her generation isn’t quite the sucker for aspirational marketing as mine.
And with her poor quality picture and lack of surround sound, the adverts for the Curry’s sale don’t look quite so convincing anyway.