What is it with men and the TV remote control? I am sure they think it is an extension of themselves, another appendage or something, because trying to separate the two is nigh on bloody impossible!….

When I was growing up, we only had 4 channels on the TV. In order to turn it over, you had to actually get up off the settee, go over to the TV and push in the knob or button to turn it over. Seeing as there was such little choice in TV and no-one could be bothered to keep getting up, it normally stayed mostly on one favourite channel. My step-dad was the one who always chose that channel as well, my mum was not really that bothered as she liked similar things anyway.We watched what he wanted and that was the end of it!

He couldn’t believe his luck as TVs became more sophisticated, and there was a remote control to play with (or ‘clicker’ as he liked to call it). When cable TV was introduced and there were extra channels to watch, it was dream come true for a ‘Telly Addict’ like my step-dad. He LOVED nearly all sports, had a fondness for a Spaghetti Western, became hooked on one or two soaps, and finally vociferously joined in with the quiz shows. Oh god, he would berate the hapless contestants (Family Fortunes being his favourite) for their stupidity; he would SCREAM the answers out to the dunces that couldn’t answer, repeating them louder and louder as if they could hear him, it used to drive me mad! However, I always laughed when he said “goodnight” to the newscaster before he went to bed.

The thing that was most annoying though is if, by chance one of us kids managed to actually get hold of the clicker and put Top Of The Pops or something on before he settled down for the evening, we would be halfway through only for him to come in, pick up the clicker and turn it over! He did not care if we were in the middle of something, he would just flick it over. I know we tried to hide the sodding clicker on occasion, but he would go ballistic turfing everything out until it was found!

I have found that Mr Grump is also a remote control hogger! (I think it has something to do with middle age, but I wouldn’t know as I am not there yet)! I’ll be watching something and when the adverts come on he starts flicking about through the channels; I ask him to turn it back but by the time he does it has already started and I have missed the first 2 minutes! He also loves to mess about with the menus, so you end up watching a 2×2 inch square for 20 minutes or until he has figured out how to do whatever it is he wants to do!

I can actually see the similarities in Mr Grump and how my step-dad was; armchair (no-one else is allowed to sit in it as it is in the best spot for seeing the TV): handy table nearby on which to rest obligatory cup of tea; slippers. The only difference is my step-dad had an astray on the table, and Mr Grump has a pouffe for his legs. Other than that two peas in a pod, just 20 years apart!

Some things will never change I guess!