The Secret Life of Melanie O.
Monday, December 18, 2006
The dangers of greeting card shopping
Christmas time often means lots of extra shopping trips for me. I enjoy the trappings of the season, and often find myself running to the shopping centre for extra bits and pieces at this time of year. On a recent occasion, I went to get Christmas greeting cards, and was sidetracked by noting that a DVD was on sale for $40.

Since our little DVD player recently died, I decided to give this little $40 player a go. Even if it only lasts for six months, you really can't complain at that price. So, I not only brought greeting cards and stickers home with me, I also presented Dan with a DVD player.

Dan was so impressed, he ran down to the shopping centre and bought a "back-up" player. When he returned, we hooked up the first DVD and settled in to watch Scrooged.

It played for about 15 minutes and then the player froze up. We thought maybe the DVD had fingerprints on it. Nope. The disc was spotless. We managed to get through the DVD, disjointedly, and decided to try another disc. Surely, there was something wrong with that first disc.

Nope. Every other disc that we tried in succession, also froze after about 15 minutes of play.

"Well, that's got to go back to the store," I glumly proclaimed.

We got out the backup DVD player. That one, too, froze after only 15 minutes of play.

So, they both went back to the store, where we got our money back for one player, and got an exchange on the other one.

The third DVD player fared no better than the other two. So, that one went back.

The clerk at the shop remarked: "We haven't had any other returns. I don't understand why they aren't working for you."

Dan remarked, "they've probably been bought as Christmas gifts. Just wait until the week after Christmas." I feel good that he gave the clerk a "heads up" like that.

Fed up with cheap DVD's, we decided to go to our local appliance store and buy a decent known brand DVD player. We got an LG - on sale! We were excited to think we would finally be able to watch our DVDs at home. Dan asked the salesperson: "Are you sure it plays all regions? It doesn't say on the box."

We were assured that it did, and took home the new DVD player. Dan hooked it up and we grabbed a movie to make sure that it played all the way through. It did!

Then Dan got out one of his Luxury Train Journey DVDs, region 1. The screen was black. Not even sound with no picture. Just... nothing.

So, once again, for the third time in a week, we took the DVD player back to the store. I was beginning to think that the Universe didn't want us to watch any holiday films this year.

Thankfully, the salesperson knew how to reset factory settings and adjusted the DVD for all zones. It's something we would have never figured out on our own.

Open the tray. Leave empty.
Push 0 three times.
Change zone to 0.
Hit the pause button.
Touch your right cheek with your left elbow and turn around three times, clockwise.

Voila! It works! I'm not doing any more greeting card shopping for a long time.

To celebrate, we went out to see Casino Royale - at our local cinema.
posted by Melanie O. at 8:45 AM -
  • At 12:31 AM, Blogger gardenbug said…

    What are zones? I just put my disc in and it plays. My tape player just ate a tape and I don't know where to get another tape player, as the technology has been replaced. I'll have to get mine repaired.

  • At 8:20 AM, Blogger LivinginOz said…

    Zones/regions are factory settings for DVD players that tell the DVD player which country you're in and what DVDs can be played. If you don't have your DVD player set to all regions, and you put in a disc that was produced in Australia, for example, it won't play. Seems a silly thing, to me, since everyone I know resets their player to All Regions/zones.

  • At 9:20 AM, Blogger gardenbug said…

    New DVDs are coming out. ...hig definition stuff. I bet my DVD player can't play them and I will have to get a new version player.

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About Me
Name: Melanie O.
Home: Durham, North Carolina, United States
About Me: Female, American health and beauty-conscious professional who has rekindled a childhood love of dolls.
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