Jerry was literally bored to tears having just watched three hours of horrible late night cable television on a Sunday in his favorite, read only, spot to sit in the dingy living room.  As he rubbed at his burning eyes Jerry began yet another round of what’s the best crap on TV, lingering on each channel barely long enough to count to three.  Just as he increased the pressure of his thumb to move on from The Clapper infomercial the screen went to black and white squigely lines.
“Sonavabitch.” Came like a screech of nails on a chalkboard. Followed quickly by the repetitive smack of the remote against Jerry’s open hand.
Just as quickly as the screen had shifted to lines it now glowed a sickly green and emitted a brain piercing hum. Dropping the remote Jerry desperately clung to his ears in the vain hope of protecting them from the audio assault. He judged the distance from his spot to the TV set to be no more than five large steps, but the idea of removing one of his hands to lever down the recliner’s foot rest was unthinkable.
So rooted to the spot Jerry sat stubbornly waiting the malfunction out.
What seemed liked hours later the sound stopped in a loud pop followed by the screen dimmed to black with only a blue flicker at its very center the way the tube TV use to look when switched off at the end of the day. Cautiously he removed his sweaty palms from his reddened ears and watched transfixed as the blue flicker grew.
“Well…,”
The gravelly voice emanating from across the room startled Jerry so completely that he had literally jumped out of his seat and now stood facing the blue screen clutching the remote to his face as if hiding behind it.
“If your still with us, then you must be right where your supposed to be,” as the voice cut out a female cackle took its place raising every hair on Jerry’s body.
The blue screen was replaced by a close up of a beautiful red headed lady all done up in Halloween makeup gore who was looking deep into the camera with ice blue eyes. She opened her hands palms up and welcomed the audience ending with the phrase, “So sit down and stay a while, won’t you,” and a wink. As if his body was attached to wires Jerry found himself again relaxing into his favorite spot the remote forgotten on the ground along with any intention of channel surfing. The camera angle widened enough so that you could see the woman was sitting opposite a man with thinning brown greasy hair, but stayed focused on the interviewer rather than the individual being interviewed. Perplexed Jerry sat forward resting his head upon his hand.
Unlike any other show that he had sat through in recent memory this one had no commercial breaks just soft questions from Red and hesitant answers from the man with the familiar voice, but they never showed his face. If you would have asked Jerry the man was hardly worth the interview as he lived a normal and boring life basically mirroring his own, but still he sat glued to the TV waiting for Red’s small smiles that she gave to the audience during stretched silences thinking that he would give anything for Red to direct a smile his way.
“As we are almost out of time, maybe you can share with us why you are here?”
At last Jerry thought confused that it had taken almost an hour to get to this point, but the man seemed at a loss too. The camera angle shifted again to the close up on her making it feel as if she was talking directly to him not the man opposite her. “You see, we issued the warnings but you ignored them, and now… well, the price.”
Jerry’s mind was trying to make sense of the words, but it was moving slowly. As the camera shifted again it now focused on the man who looked, who looked…
“Hope you enjoyed the show Jerry,” Red said from off screen, but he was frantically trying to pinch himself awake. “It’s a dream, has to be a dream. Wake up man you got to wake up now,” he told him self out loud.
The screen was blue once more and the gravelly voice back, “Till next time, sleep well,” it announced then the screen popped and dimmed to black.
Jerry still sat in his spot, now reflected in the dark TV glass, with red the color of the woman’s hair running from his eyes and ears, the remote directly below his outstretched hand, as the television jumped back to life just in time to catch the paid advertisement credit for The Clapper.

Advertisements