Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Well, Well, Well, Well

Years ago, my husband and I had a rather ridiculous spat over an article he had read. We were in Alabama at the time, and I couldn't imagine living a life that didn't involve owning/leasing a car. He was rather excited about the article because it detailed how well car sharing was working in cities and was more environmentally friendly. The whole idea was viscerally offensive to me back then, and the spat revolved around not the idea but my immediate resistance to the idea. I can't explain why, only in my defense I had NO IDEA what city living can be like.

We've used Zipcar almost since we got here and had to pay nearly $200 a month to park a car we used maybe once a month. We never have to worry about maintenance, gas is included in the monthly price, which is significantly lower than that old parking bill, and we have access to all kinds of cars anywhere in the city, plus in other cities. I really like it.

So, insert the title line here, because that's what E says when he's right and I'm wrong.

Not quite as many years ago as the car sharing spat, E started talking about doing something different when it comes to TV. I wasn't as vehemently opposed to this idea as I had been the car sharing thing, but I was certainly hesitant. It took about a year for him to convince me that the up front payment of the Apple TV thingy would be made up in monthly savings. When we moved to the Upper West Side, we ditched cable and got an Apple TV thingy. (An aside here- we couldn't get just Internet without paying MORE than what they charge for Internet plus basic cable. So we have basic cable, right? Well, one day they had to make a switch to the box. A few months later it was 4th of July and it occurred to me that we could listen to the bands and see live tv of the event we were about to watch out of our living room window. But darned if the cable doesn't work. We tried about everything, then gave up. And know what? We haven't given it a thought since).

We don't plop in front of the tv; perhaps we watch an hour, maybe two of tv a week. And are you ready for this? We watch historical stuff. Our current favorite is the History Detectives, which is actually a PBS program. We also like this program with a guy who dresses like Indiana Jones (complete with hat) who goes around the world solving historical puzzles. We've watched shows on all the presidents up to Clinton (we are old enough to remember the recent presidents). We've watched shows on science stuff, inventions, and food/travel. You wont find the prime time line ups anywhere on the list of shows we've watched.

The monthly savings money wise are amazing. But we also discovered something else: the time savings is also huge. Even though we never really parked in front of the tv, the temptation to flip through shows or watch SOMETHING was there. Now that time is spent else where. I do watch from time to time, but basically our entire viewing habits have changed. I couldn't even tell you what prime time looks like. We haven't seen a commercial in so long, that when we do see them ( has a couple per show), we're amazed that anyone would think up such craziness.

So, even though I wasn't totally opposed, E was right, I was hesitant, and enter title line here.

Ever since the iPhone came out, E has wanted one. He's tried going the blackberry route, but in the end he just wanted an iPhone. Or a Gphone (google's phone). Neither of these are with Verizon, and I had been a loyal Verizon customer since my first cell phone. I had done the math on the iPhone and deemed it just too expensive per month. The Google phone was an option, but until their recent 2nd generation phone, it was clunky and altogether ugly.

I gave the green light on new phones and phone plans if there was a savings per month. That tossed the iPhone right out the window. We spent a weekend looking at options, and then the Palm Pre came out. The monthly payment is a significant savings, the family plan had everything we needed, and it's pretty cool looking. To allay my concerns about abandoning Verizon, E offered a sneaky simple plan: use the 30 day trial period to try out the palm pre (one for each of us), and start that trial period 30 days prior to our Verizon contract end date. That way if we found we didn't like Sprint or the palm pre, there wouldn't be the hassle of reconnecting with Verizon.

The beauty in this plan is that in comparison to my old Verizon phone, the Palm Pre is a huge improvement. Within days I couldn't imagine going a day without my cell phone. I can play games that I like (puzzles), it works with iTunes music and movies, the internet is awesome, and I can locate a store or food or location near me practically instantly. I can also pull up Google maps and see where I am (which shows me the nearest subway stations). I can listen to if I'm tired of my own music (another aside- Pandora is a free music radio type thing but since I've been listening to it at work and on my cell, I have found out that they only allow 40 hours of free listening a month. Plus, they've added random advertisements that, while better than the corny radio ads, are still interupting the smooth flow of tunes. shaking my head here. So much for free).

I am totally digging my new cell phone, and we have canceled our Verizon accounts.

Insert title line here.


  1. I don't think I could stand living without my satellite TV (or cable). LOL And I don't really watch but about three shows regularly (Warehouse 13 and Primeval...Okay, two.) But we went without it for nearly a year in England, and I didn't realize how much I missed it until I got it BACK! I love TV! (esp. recordable tv. DVR) But mostly, we watch NOGGIN or Discovery Kids or PBS...we watch cartoons all day (I am a big fan of the background noise anyway, so even when I'm sewing, Dora or Miss Spider or something is usually on). BUT the good thing about these channels... NO COMMERCIALS! Hmm...I have to hush now...I'm writing my own blog entry, aren't I? LOL Hmm...

  2. I watch way too much TV. Sigh.

    And I hate it when my husband's right. He likes to rub it in. The jerk.


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