THE TV

Anyone who really knows me knows that I am a videophile and a TV fanatic. I always have to have the latest video gadget and the next size big screen TV. This love for TVs started when I was a child. One day our TV broke and my mother had no idea when she would be able to fix it or purchase a new one.

This was akin to telling one of today’s kids the internet is down and will stay that way indefinitely.  While in school all of the kids were talking about the latest TV shows, particularly my favorite: Batman. It seemed that the week our TV blew out, the Green Hornet and Kato (Bruce Lee!) were scheduled to appear on Batman!

I went home, morose and despondent and my mother asked me what was wrong. I mumbled with soul searing agony, “I want to see Batman!”  I half expected my mother to chide me about such foolishness, but instead she gave me a look that told me she totally sympathized with my plight—a look that made me think she would cry with me.

Anyway, the next day there were flyers all over the neighborhood that the local Masonic Temple was having a raffle and the first prize was a nineteen inch color television!! My mother bought one ticket and told all of us she was going to win the television.  She had us clear off a spot for the TV to sit on. She made us sit in front of the empty table and envision the TV there.  Every day she dusted the empty table off and forbade us to sit anything on top of it. She kept reminding us that we would have a brand new color TV in just a few days.

The excitement built and secretly I was worried about the disappointment of losing, but my mother would hear none of it. Finally the day of the raffle came. My mother ordered my brother Darryl to get his coat and the shopping cart to carry the TV back. She had the rest of us sit in front of the empty table and she promised us in just a few moments we would be watching television.

When she left I told the rest of my siblings not to make a big deal of it if she came back empty handed. I was really proud of her just taking so much of an interest and it really was fun pretending the TV was there (well, sometimes it was…I really wanted to see Batman).

About a half hour later there was this ferocious banging on the door and the bell rang like crazy. I ran and opened the door and there was my brother Darryl telling me to help with the TV! She had won!!!

I ran outside and there was this tremendous box sitting precariously on top of the shopping cart. All of us managed to carry it inside.  I could hardly believe it! We actually had a new TV!

My mother strutted in the house and just as proud as a peacock told us what happened.  When she got there for the drawing they picked my brother to pull out the winning ticket. He stuck his hand in the bowl and pulled out my mother’s ticket. Someone yelled foul that it was set up since he pulled out our ticket so they had him do it again. This time they swirled the tickets around mixing them up. My brother stuck his hand in the bowl and pulled the ticket out again!

At this point my mother ordered them to give her the damned TV so she can get home. They carried the box out and off they went.

Words really can’t convey the excitement or the awe I felt that night. It taught me a precious and treasured lesson about faith, positive thinking, and the tremendous power of prayer. To this day whenever I purchase a new TV this story comes to mind and although my mother left this plane of existence November of 1980 this is one story that shall always stay with me.