Plus I have a new cable box and remote. There was nothing wrong with the box, despite its advanced age, but the people running the telephone end of the service department didn't know that. I called yesterday to report that five channels were without audio, and after much to-do in the course of which only two of them recovered their sound, it was decided that a technician would call and check out the box. Even though nothing was wrong with it, he put in a new one and hauled off the relic.
The best part is that the remote, which was always insensitive and demanded excessive pressure to get many of its keys to work, has also been replaced. It's going to take a while for me to get used the different configuration of the keys, but that's a trivial price to pay. I will no longer have to press so hard on the keys that my fingernails hurt. No more fear of digital hemorrhage!