There's a time late in the day when lighting is so gloriously perfect, even Thomas Kinkade comes out for a look. It's during these times that directors coax camera men to get the shot during the few short minutes of perfect light they have remaining. Filming proceeds without idle chatter or Tomfoolery because everyone knows what is at stake.
Yup, that's how I feel at the beginning of a new consumer electronics cycle. You know, like when DVD's first came out. Most people could only afford one player, it cost $1,000 and it sat in the family room along with all the newly acquired and quickly-piling-up discs. Want to see a movie? They're right here, in perfect alphabetized order, on the barely populated new format shelf. Brilliant!
Later in the cycle, when the product is mature, well, that's when things just go to hell.
Your movies start getting lent out to neighbors who, all of a sudden, can afford their own players (though apparently, won't spring for the discs!). The kids have transmogrified into new PCs, these with DVD playback capability, so face it, they don't need you anymore, just your collection. Or worse, these shiny, perfectly reflective discs which you've handled with kid gloves have slipped off the little demon's beds and fallen into some heinous scratch-and-sniff territory from which no return is possible or even desired. The final straw comes when you notice your priest handing back "The Sound of Music" to your wife after Sunday Mass, and you know, you just know, the disc is covered with fingerprints and the case most likely has dents from having been used to prop open a door to the rectory so it wouldn't lock during trips to the mailbox because priests don't have pockets for their house keys!
But now we've moved on to Blu-ray and the mental sighs of relief I have going on in my head are so strong, I'm surprised people around me can't hear them. Start with the players. The least expensive of them are still around $400 and not likely to be penetrating your circle of friends anytime soon. Finally, your new stuff is just for you. Now, in addition to not watching half the movies you buy, you'll have the satisfaction of knowing no one else can watch them either.
Sure, the kids may have your season three DVDs of "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" in their rooms, but you're perfectly safe leaving season three of "Lost" on Blu-ray on the coffee table. They might as well be laserdiscs for all the good it will do them!
Of course, perfect light can't last forever. Pretty soon, those $28.87 Blu-rays you're getting at the store will be dumped unceremoniously into the big wire cages cluttering the aisles at Wal-Mart where they'll get poked, prodded and picked through like the big steaming heaps of dinosaur turds in "Jurassic Park."
That reminds me, when are we getting "Jurassic Park" on Blu-ray? My DVD copy has a nasty scratch.