Not that I want to date myself or anything, but when I was growing up the primary TV in our home had a 19-inch screen. And it was black & white. And sometimes, in order to get the reception just right to see The Beatles or Topo Gigio ("Hello Eddie!") perform on The Ed Sullivan Show, my parents would have me stand next to the set holding the rabbit ear antennas. For the whole freakin' show. I know: poor, poor pitiful me. Today, some folks have gargantuan 72-inch flat screen, high-def monitors displaying what Sullivan might have described as "a really, really, really big show." Still, no matter how big our home televisions become, there's something wonderful about going out to a theater. And there's something really wonderful about going out to a theater with a giant screen that we couldn't possibly duplicate in our homes.

Large-screen IMAX theaters have been proliferating, so they are not quite as unique as they once were. But if you want to see an Omnimax film in a domed theater, the only place in New England that fits the bill is the Mugar Omni Theater at the Museum of Science. And get this: Throughout the month of March, admission on Fridays is free. Nada. Zip. The Omni experience is spectacular. Audience members sit in chairs that recline to nearly prone positions and watch films projected onto an enormous curved screen that almost fills their entire fields of vision.

The you-are-there immediacy is enhanced by a killer sound system that reverberates throughout the theater and permeates filmgoers' rib cages. The films, which all have an edutainment bent, include Africa: The Serengeti and The Last Reef: Cities Beneath the Sea. (Those edutainmenty films: They sure like using colons in the titles, no?) To take advantage of the Free Film Fridays offer, show up at the museum's box office and say the special phrase, "Hello Eddie!" No, just kidding. There's no special phrase. Simply pick up the tickets -- first come, first served -- on the day of the show. Africa: The Serengeti at the Mugar Omni Theater.

Photo: A scene from Africa: The Serengeti. Museum of Science.