Redbox Anxiety

I rented my first ever Redbox movie this weekend.

I don’t know why those little red kiosks inspire so much anxiety in me but they do. The idea is ingenious, but I am very intimidated by them. I have no idea how they work or how they hold all of those movies or how I can possibly drop my movie off at ANY Redbox kiosk and not upset the balance of the movie going universe.

It’s boggling.

Since Bryon had to work all weekend, I thought it would be a good time to give it a try. I picked the Kum & Go kiosk. There was already a family renting a movie when we arrived. I got in line in the cold with Grace in tow. We waited impatiently while I tried to see exactly what they were doing. Normally, I’m pretty good with computers and finding my way around them (e.g. just keep punching keys or clicking until something happens).

The family finally retrieved their movies and moved along. We were up. I slid my card prematurely and screwed up the whole works. I waited for it to reset. Grace had already picked out a Wii game and a movie she wanted from the display. I went about trying to find them on the touch screen while holding up the little window shade and trying to read with a glare blinding me.

The movie was not available but the Wii game was. I picked out another movie, Real Steel and proceeded to the check out. The game cost $2 a day and the movie was $1.20. What a bargain! Real Steel is on our DirecTV right now, but it is $4.99 to rent so I was pretty excited. Grace always wants to buy new Wii games but most of them are too difficult for her or just lame. This was a good opportunity to try before we buy.

I am always on the lookout for a bargain so this process appeals to me. The anxiety boost for me is the pressure to then WATCH the movie and RETURN it immediately so I don’t get charged again. When there were actually brick and mortar rental stores, you got to keep  the movie for five days. There wasn’t so much pressure to watch it immediately. What if something comes up? What if I suddenly develop bronchitis on the way home and don’t feel like watching my movie. What if I’m just not in the mood. Now that I HAVE the movie in my hot little hand, I don’t even WANT to watch it.

It’s really only a bargain if I get it for $1.20. Of course if I pay less than the $4.99 it costs on DirecTV, I am still saving money but $1.20! That’s a deal!


As I’m struggling with the whole procurement process and having the above conversation in my head, another family gets in queue behind us.  As if that’s not enough pressure, Grace pipes up, “Nana is a lot faster at this.”

Really? Your sixty five year old grandma is faster than me? Well, it’s on like Donkey Kong.

I put some brainpower into it and finally get the mission completed and we scurry away with our treasure. As I pull out of the parking lot, I am more than a little paranoid that maybe my card didn’t clear out before the next group rented their movies. For all I know, we could be paying for the entire city of Marshfield’s movie rentals as I type.

I’ll bet Nana didn’t think of that.


2 thoughts on “Redbox Anxiety

  1. I was skeptical of the whole Redbox thing too at first. Did you know you can also go online and reserve a movie or game to pick up any time before 9PM? That's very nice sometimes.I'm upset with them because they raised the prices though. I was happier when it was just $1. That's progress for you.


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