We Got Netflix


This is not a commercial for Comcast (see above).  They have more money than Donald Trump, no matter what his past tax returns reveal.  For my wife and I, our monthly bill from Comcast equals two-thirds of my Freshman year college tuition.  (I went to a State University in the mid-1960s.)

Here is our story. About a month ago, Comcast’s box atop our television set made a strange sound and our TV screen went blank. Luckily, our computer did not and we don’t rely on Comcast for phone service.  My wife’s call to Comcast describing our plight received a sympathetic ear.  (That’s not a misprint)  A long verbal exchange had the following results:  the television set top box had indeed died;  a service person would replace the box and install new wiring; the cost for this service would be zero; our present coverage from Comcast for cable TV and internet would be slightly decreased, PLUS we would receive Netflix at no additional cost.  As I sat and stared straight ahead, mute, my wife repeated this to me, twice.  I was certain the End of Days had begun.



Netflix had been given rave reviews by our friends and neighbors, so we were eager to see what it offered us.  Quite a bit was our early judgment.  Our first two weeks of viewing brought us the following pleasures:  My wife watched episodes of The Crown;  I watched a documentary about Robert Kennedy;  We watched comedy specials from: Trevor Noah, Ricky Gervais, Craig Ferguson, and 4 by Jim Gaffigan (and his family) (see above); We watched the first year of Stranger Things; My wife is watching Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt as fast as she can; I watched a 2-part, 3-hour documentary: History of the Eagles.

Although I am tempted to elaborate on all the treasures we found on Netflix, I won’t –except to say: 1) Stranger Things was a wonderful surprise; 2) my wife is watching as many episodes of UKS as quickly as possible –and enjoying them—for fear the series will end and she’ll miss something; and 3) the Eagles’ film might be the best rock documentary I’ve ever seen.  (Yes, I’ve seen “The Last Waltz.”)



Last, I’ll make these points about the Eagles’ (see above) film: a) It covers their (changing) personnel and the basis for their finest hits, b) They created the biggest selling album of the 20thcentury, c) Joe Walsh had the best advice for dealing with firecracker-throwing concert goers: “If you got firecrackers, take them home, get into  a closet with them, and light everything you got,” d) While ”Hotel California” has many interpretations of its meaning, Don Henley said: “It’s about a journey from innocence to experience.”  Period.

Should you try watching Netflix?   To quote Ferris Bueller, “I highly recommend it.”


About rcarmean

Two things... First, why have I decided to establish this blog? I like to put essays together. I research an idea or topic looking for information, statistics, stories, quotes, pictures, etc. I enjoy the process and seeing a finished product. I’m told that as I get older, new activities can help maintain energy and keep my brain alert. In other words, I am not doing this for money or fame. Second, regarding the gentleman in the collage of pictures above...it's not me. Those are photos of Christy Mathewson. Why him? When I was young, my primary activity was being sick. It took up much of my time. Eczema (a case so bad I was written up in a medical journal showing doctors what their patients COULD look like), asthma, and allergies. You know allergies: don’t eat this, don’t wear that, and, for Heaven’s sake, don’t touch any of these things (eg, dogs, cats, horses --I only saw horses in cowboy movies and TV shows, dust, swimming pools, my brother --OK, that’s an exaggeration, Rick was a fine brother). In my spare time between doctors' appointments, pills, and ointments, baseball kept me sane. In the 1940s and 1950s, when I grew up, pro footballI and basketball had not yet become extremely popular. Baseball truly was “the national pastime.” I listened to games on the radio (remember it? TV without the picture). I read magazines, books, and newspaper accounts of games. I collected baseball cards. I learned about the game’s history, as well as present. The same with its stars. One man stood out: Christy Mathewson. He was a great pitcher for the New York Giants in the early 20th century. But there was much more to him. At a time when professional athletes made little money (yes, there was such a time) and ball players were considered on the same level as actors, artists, and prostitutes, Mathewson stood out. One of his nicknames was: “The Christian Gentleman.” Most men is baseball drank, smoked, cursed, and fought —with other players, umpires, and fans. The fights were physical, not just verbal. Mathewson did none of these things. But he earned the respect of other players who did them all. Even Ty Cobb and John McGraw. There’s more. He was a college graduate (Bucknell University) when most men were lucky to have a high school diploma. He played other sports, including pro football which you wouldn’t recognize. He was handsome. He played in New York City, then as now, the largest city in the country. Excellence and popularity there meant fame and money. He dressed well. Today, his commercials would rival LeBron’s. And, finally, a hero’s life must have tragedy. After his playing career ended, WWI arrived. He suffered from influenza and was exposed to mustard gas. Chemical warfare. His lungs were damaged and he required treatment for the rest of his life. (Like my Grandfather who also fought in The Great War.) He died in 1925. He was 45 years old. I have his picture here because you need to know more about him than me. He was what an athlete could be. Players like him and their accomplishments got me through a sickly, painful childhood and can still sustain me in difficult times. *****
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