Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Sometimes Randomness Is Fun

So I'm here tonight doing something that I feel like I must be the last person on earth to do... and I can't imagine how this particular project managed to slip through the cracks what with all the going through and living with less stuff I've done over the last few years (in my effort to move cross country).

That's right folks.  I'm getting rid of my VHS tapes- yup, every last one.  Anything worth keeping, such as fine family memorabilia will be stacked up and taken to a place that will convert them to DVD.  Otherwise, it's all gone.  Out the door.  Heck, I won't even miss it!

 Stock photo by anankkml, found at

The only thing is-  I'm wondering if I am really and truly just about the last person on the planet to do this.

To support my theory I found this little gem on the best of craigslist:  (Who even knew there was a 'best of craigslist'?)  It's from somebody in Portland, Maine who finally rid herself of VHS in November of 2012.  Enjoy!

Lot of VHS tapes - FREE!

It's finally happening. This is the moment you have been waiting for your entire life. What's that, you ask? Peace in the Middle East? Well. no. Official word on the Arrested Development movie? I wish! An end to the seemingly insurmountable polarized political climate that has stymied any conceivable progress in our country? Ha!

It's none of these things. But here's what is happening--I am FINALLY getting rid of my entire collection of VHS tapes. Hear me out.

As a kid, I was a huge nerd (or nerdette, as the case may be). A nerd who was obsessed with TV. It's probably inconceivable these days, but there was a time when a kid like me didn't have access to every episode of Full House at my fingertips. Viewers were slaves to the TV lineup. You either saw that episode of Alf when it aired or you had to find out what happened from your classmates at school the next day (for shame!). Armed with my family's VCR, equipped with a state-of-the-art auto-program function, the world was my oyster. I could tape things! And tape I did.

Now you can enjoy such classics as Edward Scissorhands, Children of the Corn, Pretty Woman, and The Great Muppet Caper. But that's not all!! The real beauty of these tapes are the hidden gems that lie within. You may think that you are just watching an ordinary version of Ghostbusters taped off HBO, but stay tuned! After the movie you might be treated to an episode of Growing Pains, followed by a snippet of The Sting! The Sound of Music may be great in and of itself, but think how much improved it is when it's followed by part of Nickelodeon's Kids Choice Awards from the 1990s and a few choice episodes of The Real World: Season 1! You may pop in Flatliners, only to find out how touching the series finale of Dawson's Creek really is. (Spoiler alert: Jen dies!) These tapes are replete with random episodes of TV shows and snippets of movies. Are you in the market for a VHS tape full of nothing but Buffy, Will and Grace, and Beavis and Butthead? You found it!

Some of the tapes will baffle you with their randomness. Pop in an unlabeled tape and see what you find! It just might be a mish-mash of Behind the Music: Jessica Simpson, South Park, the Jon Stewart Show circa 2004, Curb Your Enthusiasm, and some strange VH1 show starring Pauly Shore.

Did I alienate you with the Pauly Shore reference? Please keep reading. I swear whatever that show was, I did not tape it on purpose. But you know what I did tape on purpose? Every single episode of The Adventures of Pete and Pete. There, have I won back your trust and respect? Probably not.

Have I mentioned the news clips and commercials?? Sometimes they are better than the movies! We are talking references to the Clinton presidency (good times!) and the Unibomber while he was still at large!! If you have no idea who the Unibomber is, please stop reading. . .you do not deserve these tapes. The commercials for the "new" Honda Accord will make your own car seem like a friggin' DeLorean. (And yes, Back to the Future is on one of the tapes.)

There's also some personal history in there. If you are really diligent, you might find the news clip that features my sister's 4th grade class in the background in Newark, New Jersey's famous cherry blossom park! My sister was prominently featured, although I have taped over that particular portion with Beetlejuice. But you can still see some of her classmates at the tail end of the broadcast, after Beetlejuice ends.

Words cannot convey how much you need this collection. Hell, I'll even throw in my old VCR FOR FREE with the lot. I'm pretty sure it works and I might even be able to find the remote.

You may wonder why I am getting rid of these tapes. The truth is, at this point in my life they mostly just take up space and prove to be a hassle whenever I move. I need to spread the joy to others who can more fully appreciate them.

Here's the deal: you take these tapes off my hands. I'm giving them away. I do not want anything in return for this kindness. They are conveniently packed into cardboard boxes for easy transporting. But you have to take them ALL. This is an all-or-nothing, take-it-or-leave-it deal. I will throw in the VCR for free. 
How about you?  Give me your VHS stories- home movies, whatever!


  1. Other than a few Disney movies, I think most of my VHS tapes are already gone. But... we really need to go thru my FIL's tapes and have all (or most) of them converted to DVD. He was a master at wielding a videocamera, and used a non-digital, tape-needing one up until his passing last year. We're talking HUNDREDS of home movies. We really should do that...

    1. Isn't it amazing to think how we used to drag a big old VHS carrying recording device around if we wanted to make a home movie?!

  2. Would you believe that I moved my VHS tapes to Florida and back to Georgia? In this last move, I finally got rid of nearly all of them. The only ones I have left now are personal that need to be converted to DVD. The thing is that I have a VHS-DVD player that will record these tapes on to DVD. So far, I have recorded one play from high school on to DVD since moving to FL. Gah.

    1. Now I really wish I was closer to you- and your VHS to DVD converting device! How much fun would that be- you and me partying it up while we converted our old gems?! I see the possibility of a bad drinking game...

  3. You are not the last...
    We still have closet shelves full of VHS tapes. Many are the original Disney movies, yet we have plenty of others as well. I have gone back and forth about cleaning them out, but the kids and I do still watch some of them. Especially the ones we have not found on DVD. Some of our favorites are, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, Mary Poppins, Sound of Music, and my favorite since childhood, Annie.
    We have been slowly trying to replace VHS with DVD but it is proving to be difficult with the older movies.

  4. That was awesome!! I totally agree with the poster that the best part of those old tapes are the news clips and commercials. I think I have maybe 3 old VHS tapes lying around somewhere. I'd like to find out what's on them but I don't know anyone with a VCR! lol


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