.The air seems rarefied as you awake with merely two hours of slumber from a horror all-nighter. You hurriedly stumble forward as you throw on whatever and get into your car to accelerate fifteen miles per hour over the limit to the nearest swap meet. Feet are pounding gravel and voices busily chattering as the usual Wal Mart-attired masses huddle over cheap tables with equally cheap items with hopes of finding cheap prices. The normal stuff abounds; dollar store Bob Hope DVDs, knock-off urban wear where size "Large" equates to a king-sized blanket, way overpriced Star Wars prequel toys, plastic-looking pizza slices at the concession, and that one smelly guy with well past expiration date meat in watery Igloo tubs with people amazingly willing to purchase such certain death.
Then you spot a cardboard box. It's about twenty paces down across the aisle nearly out-of-sight under a table. You barely see what could be VHS boxes overflowing out from on top. Your eyes zero in as you make your unassuming beeline. An old lady veers into your path and your leg nearly catches her rusty metal cart with wheels yet still your eyes remain locked. Finally you're upon the box in question, but your heart sinks as you begin rifling through the few visible on top. They all appear to be home-recorded blanks in SLP mode with four incredibly common flicks crammed onto each. Worse yet, they all look dirty and busted up to the point you feel the need to Purell right afterward or face Hepatitis. You walk away pondering why in the hell they lugged this garbage up to the swap meet in the first place.
Well, this still very much alive epidemic isn't just regulated to soccer moms, but it must stop. Nobody wants to buy (or even take for free) your tapes with shitty movies poorly recorded off television that sat in your boiling hot attic in a cat piss soaked box for untold years. Okay? Either chuck 'em in a landfill or try and save the planet by recycling them. Don't even try hauling them out to sell no matter how cheap. It's embarrassing and the only person that will buy one with be a eighty-three-year-old man who mistakes Spread Eagles IV as "that one" John Wayne war epic. So yes, that porn you forgot you hid at the very bottom could potentially kill the elderly upon watching. Think about that.
Don't get me wrong, some records can have value. Well recorded and labeled television shows, series, or specials are most likely worth something to someone. One in particular I'd love to find is Sci-fi Channel's Zombie Week hosted by Rob Zombie in the mid-'90s which marked the first-ever (and probably only) airing of The Evil Dead completely uncut on cable. Also pictured to the right are worthy bootlegs of more cultish items someone a bit different like myself would happily pick up. Besides these exceptions (and "real" VHS releases), you're merely looking at space-consuming hulks of plastic that will be passed over. It's sorta amazing I still see this even today. You'd think these would be the first to vanish into history with the dominating prevalence of DVD. Just to note, the blank tape degraded for the purpose of this entry above was already damaged and only contained a guide to haircutting. No awesome tapes were destroyed in the creation of this entry.