I first came across the Panasonic Living in HD contest while searching their website looking at plasma tvs. I had long been a fan of Panasonic's equipment and had been holding off on buying a new television until my old 27" Panasonic CRT television was dead...Unfortunately for me, the tv was still going strong. My 40th birthday was coming up and my wife had mentioned that she may get me one for my birthday. I was excited, but then started looking at the next tier down- I scaled down my size and resolution to fit our budget.
When I came across the contest, I decide that I had nothing to lose by entering. At the time, Panasonic was asking the families to participate in different challenges. I wrote a very long and detailed entry about how wonderful our family was and how we would use all of the stuff, found a half-way decent picture of our famliy and quickly snapped a picture of the room all of the stuff would go in. Then I waited....and waited...and ultimately heard nothing.
I was bummed.
The websitge said to keep checking back for future entries, so I did. I watched and waited and sure enough, it popped up again. They were looking for more families to live in HD. I applied on line- this time I only had the 1000 characters in the text box to explain myself- quite a different task from what I had originally done. So, I edited...and edited...and shortened and changed and boiled it down to my 998 characters in each box.
I realized that I also could have sent a video as an answer to the questions, but decided against that as I really didn't think I would win anyway...I mean they were only going to pick six families this go-round, what were the chances it would be me?
Well, the time went by...The official rules said that winners would be notified within 3 weeks after the deadline for entries via overnight mail. As it was summer, my family was in and out of the house during the day. Each night that we would come home, I would casually check the front door to see if anything had been left for us. Nothing was. As the three weeks were coming to a close, I had all but given up hope.
Then, with only two days left in the three week window, my wife called me at work, "Honey," she said, "a truck just pulled up and left a letter for you. Is it a bill? Did you enter a contest or something?"
A glimmer of hope flared up in my brain...
"Uh, I think I may know what this is...Go ahead and open it..." I closed my eyes, hoping that I was right.
"Dear Mr. Calandro," she read, "You have been selected as a finalist in the Panasonic Living in HD sweepstakes..." She then went on to read the list of all of the stuff we had won: A 50" plasma television, Blu-Ray DVD player, a surround sound system, a laptop computer, two digital cameras, a digital HD video camera, a Nintendo Wii, movies and games, all of the cables and set up and $1000 for HD programming....Thats when the screaming and the happy dance started!!!
We filled out all of our paperwork that day and sent it back the next. For the next few days, I was stunned- I couldn't believe that I had actually won something! Not just something- all of the amazing products I had ever wanted! It really didn't set in until I had actually received a call from Greg, our Panasonic rep who explained the whole process to me.
People really do win. We did. So have at least 40 other families so far (we're family 39!). You can win too! You just need to enter. Trust me, it is SO worth it!
Watch this space for future posts about our experiences with our new stuff.
Next post: Panasonic Products galore!