The VHS Stack

In the summer of 2008, a video store in Hell's Kitchen was having a VHS sale, 3 tapes for $10. Not the best deal for a near-fossilized modal of entertainment, but still your author participated during lunch break in between lecturing atop bus tours of Manhattan Island.

Frequent visitations were made to Video Cafe, where the premises hark way back to the hoary likes of Palmer Video & Joe's Video on Bloomfield Avenue in Verona, New Jersey, where as a lad your author first engaged the aesthetics of the VCR - the goofy staff, the chintzy wire racks, the bizarro consciousness-insinuating early box art, the chemic fragrance of outdated plastic packaging, the random sounds of whatever movie screened that hour from the monitors perched off the ceiling: maybe Stallone, maybe a stray disciple of the Brat Pack, maybe French, maybe the Resident Evil film.

The sale at Video Cafe was limited to drama, comedy and horror, which your author was not apprised of until after making picks from the classics and foreign section. Stalker and Will Success Spoil Rock Hunter? had to be put back on the shelf.

And so a memoir of watching that stack of movies bought. . . .


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