Monday, October 1, 2012

Mystery cable connection

While watching tv yesterday I hit the “on demand” menu (I have Comcast-xfinity for my cable service) to find a show I wasn’t able to watch earlier this week. A note popped up on my screen that said something along the lines of “remove power source from cable box for one minute and then try again when menu returns”. Occasionally, and rarely messages like this come up and after it re-boots everything is fine. I unplugged my cable box for a few minutes, plugged it back in, turned on my tv again but all I could see was snow and “no signal”. Weird. The cable box was plugged in, and despite the on demand feature not working my TV was working just fine moments before. There should have been a signal. I turned the cable box on and off 3 or 4 times, and still snow. Perplexed, I changed the input to make sure it was on the right channel, even though I hadn’t changed the input. All the cables appeared to be connected and plugged in on the box and the cable jack on the wall. I followed the other cable from the cable box that was supposed to connect to the tv and found it dangling, attached to nothing. I figured it must have somehow fallen off my tv when I unplugged the power source (although it was unlikely since they screw in pretty securely) so I took a look behind my TV to see where it should screw in. There wasn’t anywhere to secure it because there was already another cable attached to the only spot it would fit. I followed that cable attached to the tv and found it dangling attached to nothing. My cable box only has 2 spots the cord attached to my TV would have fit that already had one cable connected to the wall jack and the other cord that was dangling connected to nothing. So I had a cable going from my cable box and a cable from my tv both hanging there connecting them to nothing and nothing connecting my tv to the cable box. I unscrewed the dangling cable from the cable box, replaced it with the other end of the cord attached to the tv and voila, sure enough the picture returned on my screen and I now have an extra cord. I haven't touched the cable cords since I originally hooked it up except to change out the cord connecting the cable box to the wall jack for a longer one about 2 months ago. My TV had been working just fine. My questions are: how in the heck have I been able to watch tv for the past forever (not to mention just moments before this discovery) if it wasn’t connected correctly? AND how was it not connected correctly in the first place? I’m not retarded. I wouldn’t have left cables hanging off of appliances not connected to anything and expect it to work. I’m pretty sure I did not hook it up that way when I got my self-installation kit last year. I’m so confused. I feel like this is an episode of the Twilight Zone.