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Oct 21

Xtra Smug

Posted on Tuesday, October 21, 2008 in On the box, Rantings

I pushed XtraVision’s door open and found it as grudging as my want to start the confrontation I’d been building up since the final episode of the box-set I was returning.

“Hi”  I said to the grizzly looking teeshirt behind the counter – “I’ve got a complaint about this rental, I feel ripped off.”  The girl said nothing, just looked at me expectantly and gave me a micro shrug of indifference. 

I stood in blank abandon for a second.  “Umm… this ‘Entourage’ box-set was only four hours long from start to finish, but I paid a tenner to rent it for a week.  The characters were pretty shallow too, but I s’pose that’s not your fault… ”  I laughed nervously and inwardly kicked myself for being such a sap.


“So… when I rent a box-set for a ten euros a week, I expect it to last for a week – pretty much like the others do – and not for just two nights.  I was expecting at least sixteen hours of entertainment, but I only got four!  That’s a rip-off!”

“I don’t price ’em.” She shrugged again and turned her back on me, assuming that the conversation was over.  I fucking hate that.

“HEY” I stated.  I sensed her eyes rolling as she stopped in her tracks and turned slowly, fixing a BDI on me.  “Notice how I’m being nice here?  See how easy-going I am?  I’m not that customer, okay?  I just think I’m owed compensation… I’m not demanding refunds here or slapping my fists on the counter screaming for the manager… y’know?”  My tone was dry.  God, I hate these conversations. 

“I’m the manager here.”  Her demeanour was infallible.  Her teeshirt was her mojo and I understood.  I remembered vividly.

“Oh.  Really?  Okay then… I’ll guess I’ll take these then.”  I sheepishly handed over three DVDs.  Her civil politeness thereafter made me want to hurl bags of M&Ms at her face, but I said nothing, I just raged at my weakness and at XtraVision’s ability to crush my spirit once again.

I used to work in XtraVision see.  Their regiment is tight as a nut, run by iron maidens hatched in jam-jars.  All staff had to be off the premises by 11:00pm which gives you exactly ten minutes to sort out the returned videos and settle up the accounts (while the customers are still milling around) at the end.  Not to mention all the hoovering and polishing and emptying of ashtrays – ahh, the good old days… they gave me regular bollickings for hanging around too late.

Friends of mine used to try to get me to cancel any owings on their account, and I would have if I was able.  The computer system needs everything but your date of birth on each transaction, it’s airtight.  I couldn’t figure out how to cheat the thing for love nor money, it had my heart broke, as mammy would say.

In the end I got kicked out when they thought I’d stolen a shit load of mobile phone credit.  Remember when the codes used to come in cards?  There were baskets of them just behind the counter, and I took my eye off them for a few seconds to throw a few returned videos into the back-room one night, so sue me!  The area wasn’t the poshest place and was frequented by all sorts of nutters, 

and gangs of nutters.  And little groups of nutter children… they were most obviously robbed.  I wouldn’t mind, but there’s a CCTV camera that absorbs the whole beautiful lot.  Fuck all use that turned out to be.

Also, their Christmas party was a disaster but I’m not going to go into that. 

I have no cable TV.  Xtra Vision have swallowed up Movie Magic which was my favourite haunt, so now I am their bitch as there is nothing else in this town. 

I must have invested thousands of euros in that place by now, the ungrateful fuckers. 

Entourage my hole!!!

Bring on the comments

  1. Maxi Cane says:

    Buy the DVD’s, watch them, scratch them then go back for a refund.

    Not that I do that.

  2. Jo says:

    I gave up on Xtravision years ago. Go somewhere else – chances are they’ll be just as obnoxious, but at least they won’t be Xtravision!

    Try Sentra in Newtown! I wonder if its upstairs video section is still as dodgy as it once was…

    Sentra, hee.

  3. Tuli says:

    I loathe movie rental places. But I love watching movies at home. I’m a big fan of NetFlix but don’t currently have a subscription. (Does Ireland have some sort of mail-order DVD rental thing?)

  4. Baino says:

    Do they actually train their checkout people to be uber sullen 15 year olds with multiple facial piercings and to throw in ‘like’ after every utterence? Seems so at Blockbuster over here!

  5. Quickroute says:

    You need to upgrade your dial up to broadband – then just download your fav tv shows / movies – it’ll be cheaper in the long run -google “torrent”

  6. Xtravision is walking distance from me so I do frequent their establishment. However I rent and rip to make myself feel better. Fight the system (in pathetic small time kind of way that is less criminal than vaguely naughty).


    Actually it’s too much trouble these days, feckers are putting fake bad sectors and shit in there to screw up the ripping SW. And I couldn’t handle 4 seconds of Entourage, let alone 4 hours. Get the Family Guy box set!


  7. K8 says:

    Maxi; That’s so naughty. Was that you that scratched the bollix out of ‘Black Sheep’? Man, that stopping and starting was irritating. DVDs are crap for longevity.

    Jo; I’m talking about one of those one-horse towns, mind you when I move up ’round the Bray area, I’ll be boycotting that Xtrabunch straight away.

    Tuli; Yep! My parents use those services. Me, I haven’t the patience or the fore-thought or a credit card! Well I do have a credit card but it scares me.

    Baino; I think those people were spawned from the mould on the DVD shelves… personality can be hard to find in those places.

    Quickroute; I must admit that I’ve an external hard drive FULL of ripped off films from TAT’s brother’s broadband connection, but I feel the guilt something rotten.

    Thriftcriminal; I have five series of Family Guy!!! Boo-yah. I gave up trying to rip films… the system gets my hopes up and tells me everything’s tickety-boo, but then the damn thing won’t work in your standard player. I can’t takes no more. Maybe broadband really is the way to go.

  8. Conortje says:

    An X-tra vision christmas party sounds like pure hell! It’s almost as cheap to buy viseos on as to rent them. I haven’t rented in forever.

  9. heh, torrent-tastic, got the Breakfast club the other day, nostalgia central.

  10. downsdad says:

    What about a word from our lovely web award sponsors? If you still want the pure joy (?) of fondling a DVD, post rental is nowhere near as soul-sucking an experience as your nemeses in the Ryanair of the high street.

  11. K8 says:

    Conortje; There’s a lot to be said for shelf-mooching in video stores though… I love re-renting old ones like ‘The War of the Roses’ that you just don’t find online anymore!

    Thrifty; Teen comedy time capsule!! I haven’t seen that flick in YEEAARS!

    Downsdad; Ahh yes, Moviestar, bless ’em with their malfunctioning freebies :) Me aul’ pair rent from those dudes, but they’re missing a few new releases… like ‘Cassandra’s Dream’. Weird.

  12. Consumers have rights!
    You do have rights over there? Yes?
    Then demand satisfaction!
    Tell them you’ll stay right there in the store, after their curfew and until they give you exactly what you want!

    Call me if you get arrested and need me to bail you out.

  13. Yeah, I’m gonna watch “Better off dead” later

  14. Brianf says:

    Xtra Vision there Blockbuster here. Sounds the same to me. so I go next door to the Blockbuster to “CD Warehouse” they sell used CD’s and DVD’s. I’m a champ at finding the bargains there. I usualy leave there with 2 or 3 flicks and have paid around $10. To hell with the big chain stores!

  15. K8 says:

    Joe; Why yes we do! But equally opposite, I have the right to be a pussy, a dweeb. I defend that right in a half-assed fashion.

    Thriftcriminal; Lemme guess, then Road House?

    Brian; I used to be able to do that in Movie Magic before it got swallowed by the big boys. Now it’s 20 quid per DVD or 3 for 60. Great. Thanks.

  16. I would never watch something that someone from Dirty Dancing was in. Even if he does have cancer now. Mind he was good in Donnie Darko.

    Gremlins maybe? Fast times at ridgemont high?

  17. K8 says:

    The Goonies. Gotta be the Goonies.

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