Tip Of The Day: It may shock (but not awe. Never awe.) some of you to hear that I have a fragile, delicate ego. And that sensitive, wilting flower ego of mine took a wee beating last week when I was preempted for the tornado.
But this week, I’m back! Back on Fox 9 News at 5 PM, with a Hard Hitting News Story about converter boxes. You know, those little dealies we have to buy if we DON’T have cable, or a TV bought since 2004, and DO want to watch television next year..
Tip For Tomorrow: One man’s quest to improve his gas mileage, and one woman’s quest to completely annoy her older brother. Guess which one is about me?
Further Elucidation Of My Cheap Deal: You know what? Being preempted for a tornado totally sucks. Granted, that’s better than losing my house to a deadly storm but still. I SUFFERED. KIND OF. OKAY, NOT REALLY. YES, I'LL STOP WHINING NOW.
Moving on. Today’s Cheap Chick segment on the TC’s Fox 9 News at 5 PM is about digital converter boxes.
In case you were wondering, here is a brief list of the people who do NOT need to purchase a digital converter box:
a. Folks who have cable or digital access television – aka those of you who PAY to watch TV.
b. Folks who splashed out for a new TV since 2004.
For the rest of us, we need the box. Why? Because as of February 17, 2009, every television station in the U.S. will convert its signal from analog (what it has been since the dawn of time) to digital (what it will be until They discover something better. And They always do.).
So, if you are like me and bought your TV back in the mid-90’s and have resisted the siren call of cable or dish (aka PAID) television, you will have to buy a digital converter box, or NEVER WATCH TV AGAIN. EVER. FOR THE REST OF YOUR LIFE. Eek.
Even worse, if you’ve priced out the converter box, you know that it AIN’T CHEAP. Au contraire, those little buggers cost about $50 a pop. No fair, says I! Why should we, the general viewing public, have to pay $50 whole dollars just to watch the evening news?
Well, we don’t. Thanks to Congress, who FINALLY managed to pass a meaningful bill, we are blessed with the TV Converter Box Coupon Program. Congress says that each household in The United States Of America is entitled to two converter box coupons, worth $40 each. Bless you, Congress. But don’t get used to hearing that.
So where can an honest American, like you, get your grubby mitts on these coupons? Log on here for a coupon application, or to find the number you need to call to order your coupons by phone.
Once you have your $40 coupons, act fast. They are only good for 90 days from their post-marked date, so now is NOT the time to procrastinate. Do not put off tomorrow what you can do today, and all that happy hoo-haw.
If you have your coupons in hand, you might be wondering, “where can I buy the converter box?” GOOD QUESTION. Lucky for us, most national retailers (Target, Best Buy, Walmart) sell the boxes AND (here is the important part) accept the $40 coupon. If you need a store location near you, go here.
Now, let’s say you’ve ordered your coupon, you received in the mail, you haven’t procrastinated and you’ve rushed to your nearest Target to buy the box. So, you’re sitting at home with the box in hand. ‘Now what? ‘you are thinking, right?
Fortunately ,for the mechanically un-inclined (like me), there are detailed installation instructions included with every box. If you require more assistance, go here.
I know it’s a pain in our collective booties to convert from analog to digital. And really, why are we? If it’s not broke, WHY are we wasting our money to fix it? Here’s why:
1. The digital picture is much much better.
2. The switch will free up the analog signals for emergency response organizations.
Oh. Well. If you put it that way, I guess it’s okay.