As further evidence that I am one of the luckiest people on the planet I submit the following: Videots.
If you don't currently live in my neighborhood and never have, you are forgiven for having just said, "Hunh?"
Videots is a video/DVD rental store that is about a two to three minute walk from my residence, depending on headwinds. That's great fortune right there. To be able to make a quick dash across one (1) street to select a film for your viewing pleasure. I do not have to wait for the mail to come like you Netflix users. My internet connection could go blooey (perish the thought) and I could still get a film, in minutes. I get to pick out a movie in it's DVD case -- no envelopes involved! -- and carry it to a friendly clerk who knows me by name. Top that!
Yes a friendly staff of people who know their Lionel Barrymore from their Drew Barrymore and their Sean Penn from their Arthur Penn and even their Mervin Leroy from their Lee Marvin.
Who asked if there are amenities? You need more? Okay buster, how about free popcorn? How about doggie treats for your pooch? How about a cushy sofa to loll in and a selection of drinks, candies and ice cream for purchase to supplement your viewing pleasure? You get to nosh on popcorn when you order from Netflix? Do they send Red Vines with your order? I think not!
And here's another thing (there's another thing?) Videots is locally owned. My movie renting dough doesn't go off to corporate America to feed fat cats. No siree it stays right here in Anytown U.S.A. It's high time we all had the option of buying from local yokels, it's good for the economy. But please don't get me anymore started then I already am.
Admittedly as a local business Videots can't stock everything but they do make a point of having a wide and diverse selection of foreign, classic and independent films. And when that new hot movie is old and cold, they put surplus copies on sale for customers like me.
Movie viewing has become increasingly impersonal. Used to be you had to leave the house and go to theater to enjoy a film. Later television kept a few people in, some even to watch advertising riddled films (the horror). But in 2009 we rent or even own films. Something unimaginable in the bygone days of my youth (yeah, yeah when dinosaurs roamed the earth, very funny). With movie audiences getting ruder and more obnoxious, at least to old geezers like me, it's tempting to forego the theater experience entirely, never mind that you need to take out a second mortgage to buy a movie ticket these days.
So most of us are solitary movie watchers with perhaps a mate, friend or family member joining us. It's at least nice to be able to stroll some place where there are other human beings when making one's selection. All the better when the local is a small friendly business.
Don't you see what I'm getting at, Videots, I love you.