They say that events come in patterns of three. Last week three separate occurrences frustrated me to no end and fueled the fire in reminding me why I’m ready to move out of the 2 stoplight town where I currently live.
1.) Week before last I checked out two DVDs from the main public library branch and since my local branch is closed on Monday, I returned the movies on Tuesday…one day late. When I turned them in I was socked with a $2.00 late fee. In the 15+ years checking out books & media from our public library I don’t think I’ve ever had to pay a late fee. The sad part is, I didn’t even completely watch either of these DVDs, so this infuriated me to no end.
2.) Friday afternoon I got off of work early and decided to spend a leisurely afternoon at home. I should have taken the initiative to run errands in town before going home (lesson learned). When I returned to town a little after 4:30 and pulled into the parking lot of the post office it looked pretty vacant, allowing me to quickly realize that the post office closed at 4:30. Though I had gotten off of work early and should have gone earlier in the day, what able-bodied, working American is able to make it to the post office by 4:30, on a Friday no less?
3.) Attempting to cheer myself up from the unfortunate post office incident, I went by the local movie store to see what selections might strike my fancy to rent over the weekend (more about my movie selections in a minute). There isn’t a Blockbuster, Movie Gallery, or any other name-brand chain in my town (including Wal-Mart), so this local video store has always had a monopoly on local business and thus charges more than they should. The last time I rented any movies from their store was back in the winter and as I checked out my movies the conversation I had with the blond, too-perfect teeny bopper (TPTB) behind the counter went something like this:
TPTB: Hi. (scans my card) Um, yeah, you have a late fee.
Me: From when?
TPTB: Um, last year.
Me: But I turned those movies back in.
TPTB: Well, they were late.
Me: Well, how much do I owe you for them?
TPTB: Um, $7.50
Me: WHAT?! That’s ridiculous!!! (Realizing I might have actually turned them in after the 6:00 deadline…) Well, how much total for these two and the late fee?
Me: Oh. My. Goodness. Ooookay. (putting away my $10 bill and handing her my debit card instead).
I went ahead and paid the exorbitant movie rates, realizing I could have seen the movies in the theatre for almost as much and left the store resolved that I would never rent another movie from them again. Despite the sticker shock, I was pleased to rent two movies that had been on my list to see for quite some time. The first was Shut Up and Sing, the documentary that followed the Dixie Chicks from their fallout from mainstream country music in March 2003 after their infamous statement in being ashamed that the President was from Texas, all the way through the process of assimilating how they were going to reconstruct their career and write their newest album. I’ve got to hand it to them, their brash anti-war statement garnered them more attention than they probably ever would have gotten otherwise. My other movie choice for the weekend was Hollywoodland, a bio-pic based on the true story surrounding the death of George Reeves, the actor was the original Superman on TV. Adrian Brody, Diane Lane, and Ben Affleck played very convincing 1950’s Hollywood characters quite well. As much as I enjoyed these two movies over the weekend and got a lot of knitting done concurrently, having to pay almost $10 in late fees for four movies in one week is ri-di-cu-lous.
To get me out of my Friday funk, I awoke early on Saturday morning before having to be at work by 8:00 and hauled my body to the high school track where I proceeded to walk 1 mile. Afterward a quick stop to gas up my car and purchase a V8 Fusion and a Saturday Post-Dispatch allowed me to continue with my morning/day of productivity. I followed my walking routine by returning to the track to walk another mile yesterday morning before church. I’m a little sore today, but no worse for the wear. I’m all for mornings when I have a reason to get up early and the feeling of accomplishment is just the motivation I need in doing something good for myself.