Throwback Thursday: Be Kind, Rewind

We’re officially one whole week into the new year and that means that many of us have most likely abandoned our new year’s resolutions. Sure, we purchased the gym membership and went on a tour of a facility with a tweaked out spandex queen but let’s be real–by this point we’ve taken our free gym bag and filled it tacos to drag back to our caves.

I’m a dragon.

This is the point of the year where shame starts to set in as we binge watch TV into oblivion. Nowadays, it’s much easier because of services like Netflix and Hulu but before, in the Land of Ago, we had to actually go to a video store and play Sophie’s Choice with our favorite movies because of some stupid “company policy” that said I wasn’t allowed to rent more than 4 VHS tapes at a time.

THIS ISN'T OVER, CARL.
THIS ISN’T OVER, CARL.

Visiting the video store was probably better for us than simply sitting on our couches with a streaming service. We had to put on pants, go out in public, and actually walk around the video store. We had to be judicious with our choices because you had to pay per rental which meant you were less likely to gamble on something your coworkers recommended.

"I don't care if you loved Spice World, Gary, <br />I can only get one new release and I'm not wasting it on Sporty Spice.
“I don’t care if you loved Spice World, Gary, I can only get one new release and I’m not wasting it on Sporty Spice.

After returning home from the video store, you popped some popcorn and set up your movie snacks (all conveniently purchased in the check-out line of the video store), opened your bag of tacos, and sat down to watch your movie . . . only to discover that some douchebag had ignored the “be kind, rewind!” sticker and had returned the movie without rewinding it.

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You then had to rewind it directly in the VCR or, if you were fancy like my family, you had to haul your lazy self off the couch and take the tape out of the VCR and put it in a freestanding rewinder. I remember being told that to rewind a tape in the VCR was “too hard on the VCR” but looking back, that doesn’t make a ton of sense to me since the VCR was designed to rewind tapes. In fact, the one at my house automatically rewound the tape if you let it run all the way through the credits to the end. I think I was told that to justify my family purchasing a tape rewinder that didn’t even work properly. When the rewinder finished, it was supposed to just pop open and stop automatically. Instead, ours would get stuck and make this ungodly sound of the grinding of plastic gears that sounded like it was on the verge of exploding.

I WAS TRYING TO BE KIND!
I WAS TRYING TO BE KIND AND REWIND!

And then there were the late fees. I mean, seriously, God help you if you didn’t get there by midnight to return your video. You’d basically have to take out a second mortgage on your house just to pay your late fees. Which, I guess, could count as exercise for your new year’s resolution if you sprinted back to the video store before the clock struck midnight like a bizarro, 90s Cinderella.

TAKE THAT, CARL!
TAKE THAT, CARL!

But now? You’re just doomed to get fat on your couch while you binge watch and order pizza. But on the plus side, maybe you’ll get your own reality show as a 900 pound person eating yourself to death.

Call me!
Call me!
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Emily Regan is the author of several books, including "What's an Adult?: No One Knows Anything and We're All Going to Die." She is an avid fan of reality TV, an unironic Hanson fan, and currently resides in Arizona with her family.

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