Posts Tagged ‘Videoville’

How much do I love this movie? So, so much.

This whole Coupeville Sports gig? Just killin’ time while I wait for the inevitable return of video stores.

I mean, it has to happen, right?

Yes, I’ve been wandering the desert for a decade now, with my 15-year run (1994-2009) in movie nirvana having ended before many of the current CHS freshmen entered kindergarten…

But I have to keep the dream alive.

Some day people will wake up, really look at how few films Netflix and other streaming services really offer, and we shall return to the days of Videoville renting 500 VHS tapes on a Friday night.

Or, some hipster with WAY more disposable income than myself, and a burning desire to toss money into the wind, will come along and say, “Hey, let’s be ironic and open a video rental store.”

And, when that happens, I will be there, waiting, like Silent Bob himself, who yes, I know, I sort of, kind of, look like.

Endless stats and long stretches of sitting on butt-busting school bleachers will fade, and I will be paid to once more yammer on endlessly about some weird-ass foreign film you have no intentions of ever seeing.

Yes, it starts off with dozens of Japanese school children holding hands and jumping in front of a speeding bullet train, and no, it makes no sense at all at any point from there, but … Suicide Club!!

The movie you didn’t want to watch in 2001 and still don’t want to watch in 2020.


Or, I know you’re going to rent Jurassic Park … but first, can I tell you the good word about Bottle Rocket?

Yes, I know 98% of the town of Coupeville hated it.

Sometimes 98% of a town can be wrong.

So there.

But anyways, just because video stores died doesn’t mean I became any less obsessed with films and yammering on about them.

So, for the three people out there who care, pop over to the link below and discover my picks for the 100 best movies to hit during my decade wandering in exile.

These are the films I would have been pestering you to rent between 2010-2019 if someone were still paying me to sit around and watch movies all days.



Read Full Post »

   Coupeville High School senior princess Mckenzie Meyer, the pride of Videoville. (Photos by JohnsPhotos.net)

The senior court for Homecoming practices their runway poses.

Payton Aparicio and Hunter Smith lead the parade.

   Senior princess Lauren Bayne gets love from soccer mates Lindsey Roberts (left) and Sage Renninger.

Videoville’s legacy lives on.

My home away from home for 13 years may be no more (psst … not too late for someone to bring it back and start paying me to watch movies again), but its alumni are still making news.

When Coupeville High School announced its 2017 Homecoming royalty Friday, two of the honorees had a connection back to video store life.

Senior princess Mckenzie Meyer is the granddaughter of my former bosses, Frank and Miriam Meyer.

And freshman princess Aria Bowen, though she might have forgotten about it at this point, used to hang out with me behind the video counter as a baby while mom Dea made drinks at Miriam’s Espresso.

The other royalty might not have that Videoville connection, but I guess we can mention their names here as well…

2017 CHS Homecoming royalty:


Payton Aparicio


Hunter Smith

Senior Prince and Princesses:

Lauren Bayne
Mckenzie Meyer
William Nelson
Lauren Rose
Cameron Toomey-Stout
Julian Welling

Junior Court:

Madison Krieg
Josh Robinson

Sophomore Court:

Jered Brown
Mica Shipley

Freshman Court:

Aria Bowen
Michael Laska

Duke and Duchess:

Chad Felgar
Ariana Nielsen

Read Full Post »

   Journalism, like this backboard and net, may be a bit worn, but it’s still hanging in there. (Amy King photo)

I write.

Of course, over the years, I’ve had a lot of jobs.

Fast food flunkie to dish washer, lawn care “specialist” to liquor slinger, carpet shampooer to the day care guy who got kids so wound up they didn’t take a nap for a week, my working days have been varied.

I’m still haunted by my stint harvesting mussels for a low-rent operation (so, NOT the guys currently working Penn Cove’s waters…), while my 13 years at Videoville was a true rarity — being paid to do something I would have done for free.

But, through it all, I have written.

Since moving to Whidbey midway through my senior year of high school, I have written thousands of stories in local newspapers.

Sports, a movie column which ran without missing an issue for 15 years, epic house fires which made page one, school board meetings which definitely did not, dead starfish stinkin’ up the beach.

A little bit of everything and a lot of it.

The past five years my words have lived here on the internet instead of in the pages of a newspaper.

It was, for me, the best decision I ever made with my writing.

I’m not here to trash newspapers.

They are where I started, and I still remember what it was like to see that first byline in the News-Times when I was 18, refusing to go to college and working in the press room at night and badgering Fred Obee for freelance assignments during the day.

The current group at the News-Times is a stellar collection of journalists, made up of good people who are in the job for the right reason.

The Sports Editor, Jim Waller, and the Publisher, Keven R. Graves, are two of the biggest reasons I got into journalism and have somehow managed to bounce around on the fringes of that world for almost three decades.

They, and their co-workers, are fighting the good fight, at a time when the very nature of newspapers seems to change on a daily basis.

I respect what they do, and why they do it.

Of late, I’m trying to be a little more open about my support, and a little less of a sarcastic pain in the keister.

But, I also realize, life inside a newspaper doesn’t work for me anymore, and hasn’t for a while.

When I started Coupeville Sports Aug. 12, 2012, I’m sure there were some who thought it would be a short-term affair. That I would eventually fall away like the loonies at Island Politics and similar short-term blogs.

Instead, here I am, publishing my 5,399th article, less than a month away from my five-year anniversary.

I still tick people off from time to time (simmer down, Klahowya…) but I’m less prone to poking for the sake of poking. Most days.

Coupeville Sports isn’t perfect, but it is perfect for me.

It means I can post at 2:30 AM, I can write 700 words about a JV game, I can have final say on anything and everything I write (with my readers as the final word on whether I made the right choice or not).

Do I abide by the Associated Press style book at all times? No. They’re not big fans of exclamation points, for one thing.

But while I have freedom in how I write, when I write and why I write, I still view myself as a brother in arms with my newspaper brethren.

I don’t publish smear pieces. I don’t make up stories. I fact check and use sources, and have from day one.

I may publish quicker and more prolifically than most newspapers, but I don’t shortcut to get there.

If you choose to lump me in with the patently fake “news stories” which mushroom all over social media, you do me a disservice.

While I use Facebook and Twitter to promote links to my work, the same as newspaper do, those links exist to send readers to where I actually publish — on my blog.

Journalism has had to adapt in an ever-changing world.

In 1989, there was one way to be a journalist. In 2017, there are many.

Some writers choose to stay within the framework of a conventional newspaper. Some don’t.

We are not enemies. We are on the same journey, just taking different routes.

I respect those still in the trenches at newspapers. Their commitment to the cause is worthy of praise.

I hope the feeling is mutual.

Read Full Post »

Caleb Meyer hangs out post-game with big sis Mckenzie. (Sarah Meyer photo)

Caleb Meyer is the next big thing.

Literally, as the Coupeville 7th grader continues to shoot up in height on what seems like a daily basis.

The little curly-haired kid who bopped around Videoville when he was a toddler (store owners Frank and Miriam Meyer are his grandparents) is now a long and lanky star on the rise in two sports worlds.

On the basketball court, he was the #1 scorer for Randy King’s 7th grade CMS squad, torching Forks for a season-high 26 points in one early-season win.

Exchange the basketball for a mitt and bat, and Meyer has spent the spring playing for Central Whidbey’s Babe Ruth baseball squad.

And there may be a third sport in his near future, as he’s considering trying middle school track as an 8th grader.

That would land him in the same universe as big sister Mckenzie, a standout with the CHS track squad who would be a senior next year.

Regardless of what he chooses in the spring, Meyer is certain of one thing — he was born a gym rat and will remain one all his days.

“I will always stick with basketball throughout my life, because it is my favorite sport,” he said. “It takes a lot of awareness and focus and it is also very fast-paced.”

While the seasons and sports may change, Meyer loves being active and finds something positive in whatever activity he is involved in.

“I enjoy being an athlete because it keeps me fit,” he said. “And I also find it is a good way to spend my time.”

While his height is a big strength for basketball, a lot of his points came off of beating foes down-court on the break. Speed kills, and he has speed for days.

“I believe that one thing I am good at is running fast,” Meyer said. “But I would like to be able to run fast for longer.”

While he hasn’t hit high school yet, he does have his eye on the far-flung future, giving him a solid target to work towards.

“My goal for high school is to get drafted into Gonzaga University and to be one of the best players in the league,” Meyer said.

As he pursues his goals, Caleb knows he has a strong (and proudly vocal, thanks to his cheerleader sister) support group in the stands.

He appreciates them all, but gives a special shout-out to his mother, Sarah.

“My mom has had the biggest impact on me,” Meyer said. “Supporting me with all the practices and bringing me to games as well as being at games to support me.”

Read Full Post »

If you can ID all of these movie scenes, you may officially have movie mania.

   If you can ID these eight films (which are all on my Top 1,000), you may officially have movie mania.

Was it a waste of time? Possibly.

The gauntlet was laid down, though, and I had to respond.

Let’s jump back here for a moment and set the scene.

For those who don’t know, I spent 15 years being paid to watch movies as a small town video store manager.

I miss it, every freakin’ day.

Before that, and after that, I have watched a few films.

And by few, I mean I stopped counting at 10,000, and that was a long, loooooong time ago.

I killed many a brave VCR and DVD player in their day and am in a constant battle with Netflix, as its algorithms try (and fail) to pin down my movie tastes.

There are certainly some folks out there who have seen more movies than I have, or who have more film knowledge, or better taste.

Or who at least THINK they have better taste.

But I’ll take my movie mania and put it up against just about anyone and feel like I have at least a shot.

No “could of been” here. I am a contender.

So, last week, when director Edgar Wright (Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz) announced his picks for his favorite 1,000 films of all time, I was intrigued.

I agreed with a lot, I disagreed with some, and, while I’ve seen most of his picks, there were some gaps for me. Something to work on.

But first, I took the challenge. The implied one, at least.

It wasn’t as if Wright leaned out across the internet and smacked me in the face with a dueling glove. Yet…

But the challenge was there. Could I go through my movie history and pull together my own Top 1,000 list?

Of course I could. I live for such meaningless challenges.

Later, after much mind-numbing work, a lot of knockdown drag-out brawls with myself (I, apparently, can be a pain in the rear at times … who knew?) and a stubborn refusal to let go of The Cat in the Hat (there is no rational defense), I arrived at the finish line.

They’re my favorite 1,000 films (for today at least), if not necessarily the 1,000 greatest films of all time. Everything is subjective.

So, take a moment, pop over and look at my list (it’s alphabetic, not ranked #1-#1,000, cause that would be insane), see how many you’ve seen, marinate in my obsession and then, maybe, go create your own list.

Or go outside and get some fresh air. That works, too.


Read Full Post »

Older Posts »