2012: A Mostly Brilliant Ralph Odyssey
Posted on February 2, 2012
Did you know that my guy, my Ralph, my soon-to-be-hubby, is brilliant? See, I know this because he’s told many, many, many times. His Grandmother even thinks he’s the Second Coming. I could make a really cheap sexual innuendo here, but you go ahead and make that connection for yourself. It’s probably accurate. Anyway, his brilliance was sitting next to me on the return trip from Hong Kong a few days ago and he selected 2001: A Space Odyssey on Delta’s video system to watch. It started and I soon caught him shaking his head out of the corner of my eye. I asked what was wrong and he said “I’ve tried to watch this movie on three different flights and it’s the same thing each time. The movie’s broke.” Huh? Sweetie, it’s the fanfare. Wait a few minutes and the MGM logo will come up. “Really?” It did. I guess I just enhance his brilliance.
Ain’t technology grand? I remember my first trip overseas to Hong Kong about a decade ago and being forced to watch whatever film they were playing in the main cabin. Of course, I remember going over to Germany in 1988 on the second flight I’d ever taken and they didn’t even have movies to watch. We had to rely on things called books…and cassette tapes to play on my Walkman. Now I have a laptop I keep loaded with TV shows, movies and music or my MP3 player, which is considerably easier to carry around than a cassette player.
I also remember that anytime Ralph and I wanted to check in with Grandma while overseas, we had to use–are you ready for this?–this thing called a ‘public telephone’. Incredible invention, that. And we had to carry around change to use, which, if you’re not used to Hong Kong currency, can confuse the shit out of you trying to figure out what’s what in the beginning. One of his little handy secrets, though, is knowing the location of two phones in separate stores that they allowed customers to use for free provided they were local calls. They were special secrets to him, like rolling just the right combination of dice to get you into the secret passageway between rooms in CLUE.
Cell phones weren’t much of a help a decade ago either because ours don’t work over there. It also wasn’t practical to buy one there. Naturally, technology changed that and while phone companies in the US hate the idea of unlocking our phones to utilize overseas, the same cannot be said for buying a phone in Hong Kong that’s already unlocked. They don’t care. This means that not only do we get phones overseas that won’t be released in the US for many months, but we can switch out the SIM card.
Technical crap, right? For those of you not as tech-savvy as my guy because he is pretty brilliant–I remain a bit in the dark about these things myself–we can actually buy a phone card in the form of a SIM card, slip it in our phones and voila, they work overseas! Then, when we come back, we slip in the US SIM card and it works here. He somehow makes it work and that makes him my own little bit of secret magic. When I can’t make something work, he can. And when he thinks something isn’t working, I’m there to point out that it’s been fine all along. He just has to be a little more patient and see it through.
“Would you like to play a game of chess, Dave?”
Kristoffer Gair (who formerly wrote under the pseudonym Kage Alan) is the Detroit-based author of Honor Unbound, A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To My Sexual Orientation, Andy Stevenson Vs. The Lord Of The Loins, Gaylias: Operation Thunderspell, several short stories featured in anthologies (to be combined in a forthcoming book), the recently re-published novella Falling Awake, its sequel, Falling Awake II: Revenant and Falling Awake III: Requiem.
3 Responses to “2012: A Mostly Brilliant Ralph Odyssey”
C. Zampa says:
February 2, 2012 at 8:22 am
Ah, just more reason to adore Ralph. You two are so cute together, Kris!
Eddie Lam says:
February 5, 2012 at 12:36 pm
Delta still has the overhead entertainment!!! When I flought JFK NRT, they forced me to watch whatever I don’t want to 🙁 Instead, I tried to take a nap. Lucky you and Ralph had the newest flight!! Good for you.. 🙂
February 6, 2012 at 12:50 pm
We had the same thing you did on the way over, just not on the way back. And the movies on the way over were TERRIBLE.