November 16th, 2007


Big Changes

It's official: Sometime after New Year's, I'll be leaving the video store. It's time to recommit myself to the writing. For whatever reason, I always seem to do better when I don't have a safety net, and the video store, while never intended to be one, has become just that. Also, after three years there, I'm pretty burnt out, and I'm sure it's starting to show in my interactions with the customers.

On top of all that, I have an opportunity to become a book reviewer for a major international magazine, and that's something I'd be a fool to pass up.

It wasn't an easy decision to leave. I'll miss it. I got to know a lot of great people in my neighborhood through this job, many of whom I'll miss seeing on a regular basis. I'll miss other stuff too, like being King of Smith Street, recognized by just about everyone whenever I walk in my neighborhood (and sometimes in other, random neighborhoods!), and I'll miss little things like having the little girl who lives on my block call me "the Movie Man."

One thing I won't miss is having people hand me movies on the street to bring back to the store for them. What am I, your butler? I also won't miss customers complaining that a DVD didn't play right for them (it really is a terrible rental medium, though with that said, 90% of the DVDs we get complaints on play perfectly in the store DVD player). Or customers who act personally insulted because we don't carry their favorite movie ever. Or customers who want to charge a $2.25 rental fee on their credit cards. Or customers who live around the corner from the store but refuse to bring their movies back so I have to call them every day for a month to leave reminder messages. Or customers who straight up never return the movie they rented and gave us an invalid credit card number. Or for that matter customers who never return the movie but did give us a valid credit card number (I hope you really love Miami Vice because you just paid $90 for it!). Or customers who swear up and down they returned a movie and could we please stop calling, only they never actually returned it to us and either are remembering returning a different movie some previous time or accidentally returned it to another video store, which is like chucking it into a black hole because we'll never see it again (despite the fact that we always, always bring movies that don't belong to us back to their rightful stores). Or customers who lose our movies because they're too stoned to figure out what they did with Idiocracy after they smoked the five-foot bong and fell head-first into the Cheetos bowl. Or...

Yeah, I guess I'm pretty burnt out.

So, sometime in January, I'm becoming a full-time writer again. It's time to take this writing thing to the next level.