Wednesday, May 25, 2011


We have had a great reshuffling of local PBS stations around here. The major LA station broke with PBS and is now operating as an independent. Others in the area have tried to fill the gap and are succeeding more or less, depending on how easy or difficult consumers feel they’ve been able to find their favorite programs. For Jer and me, we’ve been pulling our hair out because nothing is where, or when, it used to be.
I had wanted to see a program on Terracotta Warriors that has been making the rounds, but it seemed always to be on at a time after we went to bed. Yesterday the LA Times newspaper indicated it would be broadcast on KSCI, Channel 18, at 7 pm last night. I structured my whole day in anticipation of being ready to finally watch the program.

KSCI is a station we have never watched before – but since according to the Times their lineup last night included programs called “49 days,” “Life Experts,” and “News” I figured it was just a smaller station that we had missed. It did have a half-hour booked for “Korean News” – and that should have sent up a red flag warning, but I was optimistic.

Shortly before 7 we turned from the network channels to KSCI and found ourselves looking at a rather darkish film full of oriental men and women running around underground with huge flashlights in their hands, speaking what I supposed was Japanese, with oriental subtitles at the bottom of the screen. While we waited for the arrival of the Terracotta Warriors, two more oriental people, also with flashlights in their hands, jumped out of a car, began investigating some sandy lumps on a desert floor. They then promptly fell through the sand and landed right into the middle of the five already underground.

Shortly these seven people came face to face with a big underground door – and it passed through my mind that maybe when that door opened I now was going to see the Warriors – and then I let go of that thought. This was definitely not the program I expected and it appeared the newspaper did not have the accurate information.

I’m aware that the newspapers can only print the schedules they are given. I hate for the LA Times to have anything wrong, so I have to believe they were right and the provider of the information was wrong. There is nothing quite as irksome as expecting one TV program and getting another, but that is often the case with the PBS stations. Shortly before all this big PBS switching, we received a letter from our major station, to which we had been a subscriber, saying in a cost-cutting endeavor they were discontinuing the magazine that they had been sending out (the one that showed their program lineup) and subscribers were to rely on the website for information. Unfortunately we found the website information was no more accurate than the printed information. We would sit down to watch History Detectives and find Huell Howser on again with a program we’d already watched 10 times. Shortly thereafter the big switch in local stations was made.

I admit to being disappointed last night when I finally told Jer to forget watching, that I was almost 100% sure that door was not going to open to see all those wonderful Chinese Terracotta Warriors. So instead of watching TV, we read.

Life is full of little disappointments. Interestingly the LA Times has the same programs listed in this morning’s newspaper too but instead of trying again, we are going to Denney’s for dinner and then heading off to a free Jazz Concert down in Riverside.

I guess I’ll never know what those flashlights caught in their beams when the underground door opened. I do like to know how things end, though.

1 comment:

Olga said...

I hope you enjoyed dinner out and a free concert. I have been wondering why we even have a television lately. It seems like we pay an awful lot of money to flip through channels, decide there's nothing worth watching, and go get a book.