Technical Difficulties and the Oscars

Short CircuitLet’s get one thing perfectly clear before I go on this short diatribe: I love living in Maine. I love how few people there are here, and how most of the ones who are here are friendly and open and willing to help a stranger or say hi to you on the street. Maine is great, and it would take an awful lot to make me want to move.

However, just as “with great power comes great responsibility,” with few people comes some crappy technology. My internet speed tops out at 3 mbps as far as a reliable speed goes. That puts me on the very threshold of HD streaming. Sometimes at night, the speed bogs down, something my ISP assures me they’re working on fixing. As you remember, I cut the cord to my satellite subscription a year ago, so I get all my TV through the internet or over the air. Of course, if I lived somewhere with a real population, I’d be able to get CBS, ABC and NBC pretty easily with an antenna. Where I am, I can get none of those. Naturally, the Oscars were on ABC last night. I thought I had things rigged up so that I’d be able to watch at home, but about an hour into the telecast, everything went haywire. My computers stopped working and wouldn’t reboot (both laptops), by iPad was behaving strangely, my internet bogged down.

I didn’t get to watch the Oscars.

I gather from Twitter and live blogs and the like that I didn’t miss much. Sounds like the hosts were snoozeville, and the show in general was boring. But you know what–I love the Oscars. I want to be the one complaining about how boring it was, not the one reading about it. You see the difference? Of course this morning everything’s working fine, but when I need that technology to work, it all died. And right then, I was pretty steamed at my part of the country.

Why can’t I live where there’s a better internet connection? My brother in DC gets something like 30mbps for the same price that I pay for 3. Why can’t my TV reception be better? Why is it difficult to get to any real store that doesn’t start with Wal or end in Mart?

But then I remember: it’s sort of an either/or situation. If all those amenities were here in Western Maine, there’d probably be a slew of people using them. So which is more important to me–a fast, reliable internet connection, or a wonderful place to live?

Still, next year I think I’ll arrange an alternate viewing setup. Because no one should have to be without the Oscars two years in a row.

Oh–and I won the Oscar pool, meaning I get to keep the Oscar the Grouch Hat of Victory.

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