Like any family, the Silva had a television. And everyone liked to watch TV.
Dona Esmeralda loved soap operas, but especially aerobics classes. Mr. Silva preferred motorcycle racing and never missed his cooking class. The children then liked everything and never lost anything! They spent all the time in front of the television. They watched her return from school at night after dinner, and during the weekend spent time in front of her, never tired of jumping from channel to channel. They didn’t do their homework, they weren’t going to play outside. And always because of the television, they never helped at home.
Mr. Silva and Dona Esmeralda didn’t like that at all.
One day, Mr. Silva was fed up. He turned off the television, took it upstairs, and put it in a closet.
“From now on, you’re only going to watch TV on weekends,” he said.
The children were very angry.
But on Tuesday, Mr. Silva had to take the device to his room for his wife to do gymnastics. On Wednesday, she took the television out of the closet again because of the cooking show. On Thursday, Carlota had to see a very important documentary for the history class. And on Friday, I was going to give the second part of The Conquerors. No one could miss such a program…
Worse, the television was too heavy for Mr. Silva! Once she tripped, she fell down the stairs and nearly broke her head. He was sick of loading the device up and down, and eventually put it in place. The children immediately returned to their old habits. The Silva were desperate!
One day Mr. Silva went to town, passed a used-goods store where he saw a television for sale and smiled. I had an idea! In the afternoon, when the children returned from school, the television had disappeared.
“There will be no more television in this house,” said Mr. Silva.
The children ran up the stairs but there was no TV in the closet anymore… They couldn’t believe it!
“Tell me, Dad, where did you hide her?” They insisted.
The next day, on the way to school, the children found out for themselves. They saw your dear television in the shop window. They could not believe their eyes! Dona Esmeralda was surprised, too, but soon realized that it only did them good.
The following week, the Silva did everything to make their children forget the television!
Mr. Silva brought a lot of interesting books from the library to Nicholas. Dona Esmeralda bought the material needed to make a rabbit for Alexandre’s plush dolls collection, and helped Carlota with the piano lesson.
On Thursday, Mr. Silva went shopping with the boys and prepared an amazing dinner! On Friday, D. Esmeralda found some games at the bottom of a drawer.
On Saturday, the television was no longer in the store. It had been sold. The children were very sad and downcast.
– Then! Courage is not the end of the world! Said Mr. Silva.
And on that very day they arranged wood, ropes, and utensils. The next day they set about building a cottage in the garden. Little by little, everyone began to forget the television.
And the children would have completely forgotten it if an extraordinary event had not arisen… They were playing in disguise: they had found lots of old clothes in the attic when suddenly… miracle! There she was! It was really their television!
– Paiiiii! They shouted in chorus.
The time had come for Mr. Silva to explain himself. He had to confess everything. He had never taken the device to the store, but when he saw the same model in the window, it came to him to say nothing and let them believe it was theirs … And then decided to hide the real in the attic.
They were all amazed…
“So that means we could have seen The Conquerors?” Asked Dona Esmeralda.
– Well, will give again, if you are so interested … – answered Mr. Silva.
– Oh, dad, sure! Shouted the children.
Mr. Silva eventually brought down the television …
But nothing went back as before because … that week …
Nicholas just read the library books and tidied up his room…
Carlota became a millionaire one afternoon… and Alexandre built a house for his dolls…
They all prepared a delicious birthday cake together for Mr. Silva…
They organized a concert for the mother…
And to top it off, they finished the cabin, had a party and invited all their friends.
They had a lot of fun… and nothing continued as before !! Philippe Dupasquier Finish the TV! Paris, Gallimard Jeunesse, 2004 (Translation and adaptation)