My father-in-law asked my son and I to come up and build a TV stand for him. He has a big flat-screen HDTV, and it had been sitting on their coffee table for years, and he bought one of those stands with the arm in back to hold the TV. So, we'd made plans to go up yesterday before my son went to work.

So, we got the stand built and the TV mounted before my son had to leave (after some good-natured ribbing about how the Radio Shack employee couldn't follow the instructions and handed me the wrong bolts at first - which we discovered after pulling a couple anchors out). Which left moving the electronics to the stand and wiring everything up. When we first talked about it, I thought it was just moving his cable box, DVD player and maybe VCR.


He wanted his audio receiver moved, and we eventually added the tape deck, turntable and CD player to the mix. So I ended up spending about 90 minutes wiring all this stuff, testing it and such. Crawling back behind the stand, kneeling, squatting, sitting cross-legged. Wonderful on my knees - the sprain I had earlier in the year has really been acting up since then. But...I'd forgotten how much I enjoyed that stuff. I mean, nothing was rocket science, but my FIL basically said, "I want this, this and this" and left me alone to do it. We reconfigured a couple times, I asked him if he wanted to try A or B, did he want this here or there, did he want me to try this, and his basic attitude was "What the hell - try it1" I enjoyed it enough that I told my wife she might have to keep my from ordering a new receiver to do it all with our stuff (my current receiver doesn't have the inputs).

Hooked everything up and began testing - couldn't get the CD player to open. I told him that, and he said, "Yeah - that never opened without the remote, and I don't know where the remote is." I said, "So why did you bring it out in the first place?" Bye-bye, CD player! Experimented with a couple other things because he wasn't sure how they were supposed to work, but in the end, we got the DVD player, turntable, tape deck and TV all going through the receiver, the DVD player and VCR working, and set up the TV so that he doesn't have to scroll through the inputs that don't have anything connected.

He's in his seventies, and he was like a little kid after it was done - sitting in his chair and saying, "Oh, that's great!" Then going to the sofa (where he wants to move his chair) and sitting down and saying, "Look at this! Wow!" He was laughing at hearing it all through the stereo, too.

Me - I just had a blast setting stuff up and making it work.