Getting it taped

PUBLISHED: 12:52 23 August 2007 | UPDATED: 15:14 12 May 2010

I see that a certain video rental company has gone into administration. As someone who has not rented a video I don t really know the causes of the company s demise. Something to do with downloading from the net (that s a technical phase I ve picked up, b

I see that a certain video rental company has gone into administration.

As someone who has not rented a video I don't really know the causes of the company's demise.

Something to do with downloading from the net (that's a technical phase I've picked up, but haven't got a clue what it means) and the introduction of new technology.

Now we had a video recorder when they were originally introduced.

And I used to spend hours playing with all the mechanics.

Obviously, being proud of mastering such a system, you can understand the disappointment when the wrong channel was recorded.

And it was probably the wrong time.

When everything went according to plan, the wrong video was used and a programme that had been preserved for posterity was over-recorded.

To make matters worse, when all the correct settings were in place, the machine simply chewed the tape.

So, presumably, it would have been easier to rent a video.

But that would defeat the object.

After years of persisting with the machine, and eventually deciding to look at the instruction book, I discovered I could record the right programme on the right channel at the right time.

Marvellous.

But then the much-loved and now admired video recorder quite simply decided not to work.

Now I will not going into the workings of the replacement machine.

It does, however, have the capacity of playing DVDs, so at least the seven series of The West Wing can be seen again and again.

And I've learned about actually buying DVDs.

But the rest of the technology revolution has left me in its wake.

However, we do have one of those bits built into the television which says we can catch up on programmes that have been missed.

Now there's a revelation.

It means an end to all that planning and studying the Radio Times as though it was a revision paper for an important exam.

So here was the opportunity not to worry at all about recording - and not over-recording - a video tape.

But then came the discovery that the programmes being shown again at any time mostly consisted of EastEnders, Coronation Street, and Emmerdale.

So it's a return to the instruction book and the hope that this time the system will be cracked.

All that is left now is the learning of Japanese.


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