Our television is dying what seems to be a slow and painful death. A couple of weeks ago, it started taking longer to turn on in the morning. As the TV-plague progresses, it causes the picture to blink on and off an increasing number of times before it becomes watchable. Sometimes it just won't turn on at all, and we have to turn in it off and try again later. It is a most irritating malady.
So we've begun the search for a new television. Mr. Deplume and I have looked at HDTVs, regular TVs, LCDs and anything in between. Our options are this: buy a regular old tube TV, for a couple of hundred bucks, an HD tube TV for a couple hundred more than that, or a fancy flat screen for yet another few hundred. We've ruled out the HD tube tv, because it is so heavy that we'd need to buy a new stand for it, taking away any savings over the fancy one. So we have to decide on a plain old television that shows the shows, or a fancy one that shows the shows, only much better.
We've always maintained that HDTV is a silly concept, and that the glory of high-definition is just lost on us. But we find outselves drawn to the bright shiny flat screen gorgeousness. But here's the rub: we're cheap. We are really very frugal, and do our best to avoid the consumerism that runs so rampant in our society.
So we're faced with this horrible moral dilemma: do we spend $450 more on a fancy HD television, when a regular old tv will do? If I have that $450 and am willing to part with it, why is it okay not to do some good in the world with it? The food pantry could buy lots of groceries with that. The church could heat the building or pay for programs with that. That money, given to Heifer International could buy sheep or llamas or a cow for a family in a poverty-stricken country.
But I really want the fancy TV.
In thinking and praying on this today (yes, I'm praying about a TV-- wanna make something of it?!?), I'm beginning that I need to give away something to help someone else before I can splurge on a silly want of my own. I'm so grateful to have enough money in the bank that these things are even a possibility. It wasn't all that long ago that we were trying to figure out how to pay the gas bill and also clothe our growing baby girl.
Will Norm's family get the fancy HDTV? Will she learn to get over it and enjoy her current station in life? Will she ever finish the sweater she's working on? These questions and more will be answered in the coming weeks.