The man football fans and bonbon-eating moms owe a life to

June 1, 2012

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Sitting on our couches, staring at the screen in front of us, we most likely think very little about the man that enabled us to not move for such an extended period of time. He was Eugene Polley, inventor of the television remote control, who died at the age of 96 in a suburban Chicago hospital on May 20.

Polley also contributed many less popular inventions that those of us practicing modern day laziness might know, such as radar technology for the U.S. Department for Defense and a precursor to the DVD player.

But "Shall we celebrate that?" asks The Second City's Monique Madrid. "No, we won't. Because who cares! He invented the remote control." Read an excerpt below or listen above:

Initially, the staff wasn't sure if he was dead, so they took out his batteries and switched him around but yes, the father of the couch potato is gone.

Upon hearing the news, I was torn. Mr. Polley, you've helped create millions of fat-bellied husbands whose imprint will remain on the couch long after television becomes obsolete and they surgically implant entertainment chips into our eyelids. On the other hand, while I slightly remember turning the TV knob for my parents when I was little, for the most part, the remote has always been a part of my life, like a smaller, more convenient sister who I took for granted.

Thanks to the clicker, I can secretly watch Jersey Shore and quickly change the channel when somebody walks into the room. So, who was this Eugene Polly? A bum? A slob? A secret spy for the television network's who was paid to get into our homes?

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