Tuesday, April 12, 2011

A Blockbuster Eulogy

So I'm walking out of Ingles, groceries in hand, and I look up and see a dimly lit sign on the store across the street.  Store Closing, it says.  Right over the last Blockbuster in Conyers.  So as far as I know, there will be no more movie rental businesses of any kind in my home town.  It was like a sample, a taste of that really expensive imported cheese at Publix.  When you're a kid and you don't have any money (at least not $50 for a video game) but the local Blockbuster finally has a copy of Zelda II in stock and so you rent it for like a week at Christmas, but you can never get past the boulder because you can't find the magical hammer... Or your dad renting The Hobbit at the Kroger so you can watch it, even though you sleep through half of it because it was so boring (only to later read the book and it change your life...).  There's something to be said about going out, physically traveling to a place and renting a movie, as it's nothing you can keep, so you have to watch it in the days you have it.  That'll get rid of ADD procrastination.

Of course Blockbuster closing is a sign of the times... it's the digitalization of the world.  Videos, Music, Books, everything being electronically transferred into 1's and 0's.  Binary code.  All so that we can sit at home (or, now, at the local Starbucks) and download our heart's wishes.  There is no eagerly waiting for the latest Playstation 3 game, as once it is released, it can be downloaded ad nauseum to the console.  There's no opening of the box, leafing through the instruction booklet on the way home, or flipping through the latest Nintendo Power hoping for a clue.  It can all be downloaded or looked up.  As I said before, it amazed me when, at 10am on Christmas morning, the most looked up thing on Yahoo! was "Video Game Cheats."  It didn't even take them but a few hours and they wanted to cheat on their games.  But I digress.

It's part of a greater change, maybe brought on by gas prices, but more likely by just the convenience of getting everything ordered online through Amazon, or any of the other online stores.  There's no need to go to Best Buy to look at Large Screen TV's.... just go buy one with flexpays on hsn.com.  You have to get groceries, your drugs, and going out to eat for food...and that's it.  The only reason Malls exist now is to have someplace to send the kids so that parents might have an hour or two of peace and quiet.  And I should know, as I work in one.

How I felt when I looked at the closing sign at Blockbuster... a little sad, but with more indifference... when the FYI, Turtles music store closed in Conyers, they offered all their used and new CD's at half price.  I didn't buy any of them...why bother when you can get them downloaded as MP3s from the Internet?  So I went home and took out my Blockbuster Card that I still had in my wallet (next to my Library Card which had seen even less usage), and I put it in my junk drawer, where all expired cards go to die.  And it's not like I even watch movies anyway... my ADD is too bad for that, unless I'm in a theatre.  You know Where the Wild Things Are, which I still rave about... I have the DVD and the Blu Ray, but I've never watched either.  I bought quite a few DVD's from Blockbuster when they had their sales, but 90% have never even been looked at.  But I suppose when we all lose our jobs and have to be put on the waiting list for working at Walmart (which will be the only thing left open), at least I'll have something to distract me.  Or books, or video games.  All of which I can easily download from my computer and store, like a squirrel storing his nuts for the winter.

No comments:

Post a Comment