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  • Paul Davidson

Rewind My Life

TiVo has screwed me up.

If you have TiVo, you are obviously very familiar with the amazing technology this digitial television recorder has. The ability to rewind live television (if you’ve missed something) or pause live TV. No longer do I miss anything — if I didn’t catch what someone said or I missed a telephone number or I want to catch the phone and not miss my show, the TiVo unit allows me to do it. However, I have become so dependent on the damn thing, that it’s now screwing up my life.

How?

I find myself wanting to rewind live radio while I’m in the car, when I’ve missed what someone said. When my cell phone rings and I’m talking to someone (a live person), for a split-second I make a movement as if I was going to grab the remote and pause my live friend’s babbling. I sometimes find myself saying “baloop-baloop” (which happens to be the sound of a TiVo remote quickly forwarding or rewinding through programming) when I want to hear part of a song or conversation again.

Mostly, I find that I want to rewind my everyday life. And part of me, logically, believes that I can — a result of experiencing the most ultimate, groundbreaking technology the world has ever seen. TiVo.

This unfortunate situation (unfortunate because I believe I have the superpower to rewind live radio and people’s conversations) is quite similar to another technologically-inspired psychological illness that befell me a few years back when all I was doing all day was playing the Dreamcast video game Crazy Taxi.

Crazy Taxi challenged players to speed around town, picking up fares and delivering them before the time ran out. But on the side of the road throughout the game were these parked trucks, with huge ramps on the back of them (imagine those trucks that carry brand new cars to dealerships). Well, in the game, you got extra points for driving up and flying over these trucks via their ramps.

There were days where I was driving down the street and saw one of these ramp trucks on the side of the road, and for a split second, my instincts were to drive up and over the ramp for extra points. I never did, mind you — but keeping the urge “down” required extensive will-power.

I don’t know what that says about me. But I do know it’s sort of scary.

Well, really scary.

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