Why didn't my VCR work?

I finally got round to using my new VCR. (Sony SLV-N900, if anyone is interested.) I knew I’d be out tonight – Survivor Night – so I thought it would be a good occasion to break it in. As a test I set the timer to record Drawn Together while I was watching it last night. I got Drawn Together.

So I get home an hour after Survivor. Time to sit down and chill to the game. Only there’s a problem. I have audio, but no video. Why would it have worked last night, but not tonight?


In case anyone is interested…

I forgot to turn the cable box on.

Remember the good ol’ days when the cable just came out of the wall went into the TV and you didn’t need a box?

Nope… I’m too busy living in the present, where cable boxes come with DVRs built in to them. Mine can store 80 hours of SDTV or 15 hours of HDTV, doesn’t need tapes, doesn’t suffer the deteriorating quality of VHS tapes over several uses, can record two things at once, can begin playback as soon as the recording starts, is “on” all the time so I can pause\rewind live TV, can dump recordings off to VCR\DVD if I want to and doesn’t have some arcane “menu” for scheduling recordings. It’s 2005, dude - ditch the VCR!