In 1991, the infamous Blockbuster Video Corporation gave me a real shit of a time in the U.K. Their policy was that if a member introduced a new member, then both would receive a free rental. Knowing a lot of people, over the weeks that followed I helped the company (and myself) by introducing 20 new members. One day I went into the store with a friend (soon to become a new member). After filling out a simple form we went over to the cashier. To my surprise I'm told that my account had been FROZEN and that I couldn't put any more credits into it. Pissed, I asked her who was behind such bull shit and was told the manager was, Wayne.
Finding out when he would be in, I returned two days later equipped with a black marker pen. In a corner I got one of their membership forms and drew around its perimeter. I then walked over to Wayne and in front of some other customers I said, "I have a problem understanding some things, could you please read this card out to me." After he'd read it, I asked him to read it again. Giving me an inquisitive look, he did as I asked. When he'd finished reading it I said, "and where on that card does it once mention a deadline on how many free rentals one can receive and where does it state a limit on how many members can join?" "Ah, you must be Mr. Anderson," he said. "I didn't say you couldn't have a limit on your video consumption, it was just bought to my attention that you had gathered a large amount." "So is my account frozen then?" "No, but I'd like to see you use some of those credits though." "That wasn't my question?" I said. We went back and forth in this pathetic manner for about five minutes achieving absolutely nothing. In disgust, I began walking out of the store. As the sliding door to the front entrance opened, he yelled out, " And I'd like to see you use some credits though."
This incident was three and a half years ago (from 1994). I've never once used any of the forty dollars worth of credits that I attained there. Up to that point and every time I return to England I drop in just to make sure that my credits are still there. I do this for the sole purpose of annoying an ignorant and arrogant fuck who thinks he knows everything, but sees nothing.
UPDATE An update on the above Blockbuster story. Just to show you how pathetic the English side of Blockbusters are, I sent my mother my Blockbuster card in March of 98 to use, as I was never going to get around to using up all of those credits anyway. To her surprise when she arrived (at the same store that is mentioned in above story) she was told that I had NO CREDITS WHATSOEVER in my account. Apparently, their policy was, that any customer who had an account with them had to rent a video within a year otherwise the account would be WIPED out. Can you believe that; any account just zapped because of its in-activeness. No letter to the person whose account it is, no phone calls, nothing! I'm sure this written stipulation was as obvious to see as the requirements for a deadline on how many free rentals one can receive or the limit on how many members can join, as mentioned in the above story. What else is there to say about this company?
CONCLUSION After filing complaints in the US about the store in the UK that had wiped out my account full of credits, it was authorized and followed through that my account be re credited 20 movies. Also in the US, I was given 10 free rentals as well. But I stress that if I didn't live in the US, I wonder if this conclusion would ever have become a reality in the UK.
And to give you another Blockbuster story before we finish....
The Blockbuster store on Mongolia Street in Chico CA, is a piece of shit. An employee (whose name was originally on this document, but you know how offended people get in this country, so I've opted, against my own will to take it off the page), a lady who resembles a dribbling lump of oozing shit freshly dropped onto a green pasture from a smelly pig on heat, had a real attitude to my simple question. I'd rented the movie, The Godfather, one of my all time American favorites. I'd wanted to show a close friend the scene at the end of the first tape, where Sonny Corleone is gunned down on a toll bridge. To my surprise this non-worded scene of bullets and blood-which the whole movie had consisted of already, WAS CUT OUT. Returning to the store I explained my disappointment and Diana's attitude was of the way the slaves were treated by the Romans in biblical times, basically "Tough Shit." When I asked if I could get in touch with Paramount pictures the video distributors or a Blockbuster representative, she proudly informed me that, "All the Blockbuster tapes of this movie were edited like that and there was nothing she could do".
Thanks for your reading, regards, Johnny Anderson.
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