- The Washington Times - Monday, August 19, 2013

On Sunday night, police in Fairfield, Conn., were inundated with 911 calls about — no, really — a cable outage affecting parts of the state’s southwestern corner.

Hey, Connecticut — do I have to explain everything?

The whole reason you’re paying your cable carrier for video-on-demand is so you don’t have to call 911 when there’s an outage these days.

If you lose service while watching “True Blood,” you can watch it tomorrow. Or the next day. Or whenever you bloody well please.

So it’s no emergency — something the Fairfield police confirmed in a message posted on the department’s Facebook page clarifying for those in doubt that, no, a cable TV outage is “neither an emergency or a police related concern.”

Reminding distressed cable viewers that the 911 number is reserved for “Life Threatening Emergencies ONLY,” the message served notice: “Misuse of the 911 system may result in arrest.”

And arrest, it is my duty to inform you, may result in temporary loss of your access to Cablevision. Don’t say you weren’t warned.

Just what were you watching last night that was so important anyway? The Red Sox-Yankees game started hours earlier, and A-Rod was drilled his first time up, back in the second inning.

Look, if I’m being tough, it’s only for your own safety.

Like you, I’m a cable subscriber — Comcast. So I think I have at least an idea of what you must have been going through Sunday night. But be smart.

You might think there oughta be a law against the way they deviously make you dependent on them for all of your incoming and outgoing communications links — phone, Internet and TV.

You might feel like reporting them to the police when they then ambush you with a sudden, extortionate rate hike.

But don’t do it. Take a deep breath, count to 10 — and wait for cable service in your area to be restored.

• Daniel Wattenberg can be reached at dwattenberg@washingtontimes.com.

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