Sunday, May 27, 2012

The Quest for THOR--A Dauntless Journey

It all started yesterday...

No. Scratch that. It all started last weekend when we went to see Avengers. It was from that time on that I was a woman on a mission. Anyway, there was no way I was passing up the opportunity to see THIS...

...on the big screen TV. Seriously.

So back to yesterday, I and my partner in crime for the day (my good friend's younger daughter--practically a little sister to me--we'll call her "O")... and I decided that we'd hit up a Redbox on the way back from Seattle Center (where we'd been chillin' out and maxin' at the Folklife Festival.) 

We'd planned it out like pirates. No big. Escape Seattle proper, hit up the DVD rentals and go home for some well deserved muscular Marvel bliss. Easy right?



NO. No it was bloody well not.

The universe was conspiring against us from the get-go, either that or it wanted me to PROVE my dedication to the cause. And the ordeal began with Battle Seattle, as I've dubbed it, which included a lot of fruitless driving around and getting lost while trying to get the hell back to the I-5. One phone call to the bestie for assistance, a bout of asking for directions from strangers, and my first ever fender bender later, we'd escaped the city and were heading in the right direction. All was well again.

We stopped at Outback for dinner, where full and happy bellies lulled us into a false sense of optimism about the course the rest of the evening would take. Behold the power of steak:

After dinner, O and I headed to QFC's Redbox, since all the old school DVD rental stores seem to be out of business these days, and we found that Thor had been sold out. But that was fine, because we could just go to Fred Meyer and surely they'd have it.

Except that they didn't.

But oh well. It was all good. Because Walgreen's would have it. Of course they would.

Except that they didn't--those stupid jerks.

But it was totally under control, because we hadn't tried Safeway yet!--and it was right across the street.  And Safeway would have Thor. Safeway would not fail us. No way, because who actually shops at Safeway anyway?

We practically peed with glee when we saw the Thor case on the shelf until we opened it to find that the whole thing was a beautiful lie! Empty. Like my heart.

Luckily, however, the nice info desk man told us to try 7/11. "All 7/11's have Redbox," he said. And HOORAY! Hope was reborn.

So we headed for the 7/11 next to the Safeway. And you know what?

7/11 can kiss my ass. BUPKIS. No Thor. No Thor for me!

Redbox was screwing with me now, and I was turning fetal. O's literal and ear-splitting war cries were the only things keeping me from withering into it was getting kinda late and in spite of her begging me not to relent---to just try that one last 7/11 on the way home---I threw in the towel, determined to go to Target in the morning where they were guaranteed to have Thor. And also, I desperately needed  a GPS system, because I can get lost crossing the street.

So it began anew today, with me primping a little before going out because I wanted to make my best impression on Target's DVD stocks. Couldn't take any chances.  And "O" came along, of course, because she was just invested now. She was going to tear down the world to get to this movie, because it didn't even matter about the hotness anymore, we just weren't going to fail again. And so we took to the road, headed for our inevitable success, singing happily in my car all the way. \

The sun shone encouragingly through my sunroof. Target loved us, the world was on our side, this was gonna be great.


No. Listen. This shit was REAL now.

There had been a run on Thor, Target told us. And apparently also Captain America. And that they're stock was actually, somehow, a negative number. A negative number! How is that even possible???

I was going numb by now and had to forbid "O" from HULK SMASHing the electronics aisle, but I still
needed a GPS, so I priced a Garmen, bought one and headed to the car to try it out.

"So why don't we do that one last 7/11?" O said.
"Uuugh," I said.
"Come on! We can't give up, yet! I have to have this movie. THIS IS YOUR FAULT. YOU DID THIS TO ME!"
*Guilty face*

Our final glimmer of a chance seemed to rest in the hands of a 7/11 on 228th Street in Bothell, Washington, and I determined that, DVD aside, at least I'd come away with a Slurpie.

When we got there, there was a mom and her two boys in front of us who were already using the Redbox machine. But that was perfectly all right. We'd just wait our turn, except that:

"They want Thor!" "O" whispered to me, horrified.
"The kids..."

As I listened I noted the two young boys relentlessly pestering their mom with the word, "Thor! We want Thor."

On the outside, I reacted well enough. I nudged "O" not to draw attention to our mutual interest in said movie, and perhaps the demon spawn--er--little angels would get distracted by a nice DreamWorks, or maybe even a different Marvel adaptation. One that wasn't Thor. One that wouldn't lead to me building a voodoo doll of their mother and smacking it against the wall for three hours.

At this point, I think "O" just couldn't take it anymore, and as the word "Thor" was uttered once again by one of the little tykes, she sweetly joked to mom about how we'd searched high and low for two days trying to find said film, to which voodoo mom replied, "Oh, no, really?" and then laughed, hesitating...

And I don't know why I said the next few words, but my stupid sense of propriety got the better of me, and I answered, "Oh, it's okay. You were first."



SCREW MANNERS. I could have taken that mom. I'm scrappy.

But nooooo. *grumble*

So, "O" and I waited our turn, hoping and praying that voodoo mom and her children had not rented the last one in stock.

But they had.


As I pulled out of the 7/11 parking lot, I bemoaned my passivity, and "O" said,
"Well. The children's happiness comes first."
"No it doesn't! They're not even old enough to watch that movie. They stole my Thor!"
"Fine, then why don't we run down their car wearing ski masks and nab the DVD."
*blink* "....Did you see which direction they were going?"
"Jennifer! The children's--"
"Oh, fine. I want tacos. Let's turn here."
"OH! There's another grocery store."
"What are the chances... do you think they have a Redbox?"
"I don't know, but it's worth checking it out. WE CANNOT GIVE UP."
*Groan of inevitable defeat.*

But we parked anyway, entering the depths of an unknown grocer with heavy hearts, dragging our sorry asses like SamWise carried Frodo up the last of an exploding mountain.

And there she was... Lady Redbox...tucked in a corner with a change machine and some seasonal stuffed toys and a woman just ahead of us on her cell phone. She gave up her search and left us to one last try. Perhaps she, too, had forlornly given up the quest for Thor.

I did as we'd done a million times before, selecting the "T"S and scrolling over, expecting to see Thor grayed out in non-selectable misery.

But wait.


Something was different. The DVD was...AVAILABLE??????

"PUSH IT!" Ordered "O", shaking me from my confusion. "PUSH THE BUTTON!"

So I did. I selected Thor, only half-believing, expecting a little sadistic clown to pop out at any moment laughing and pointing and and singing about how it had fooled us again, you miserable saps.

But there was no sadistic clown ANYwhere. Rather, Thor waited in my check-out box for the taking. And you know what else?  IT was the last Thor in that Redbox. WE HAD FOUND THE ONE TRUE, SHIRTLESS, DEMI-GOD RING. IT WAS OURS.

And oh...the victory was sweet.

"O"s glory.

My exhausted but utter agreement.


And so, tonight, we will pop popcorn, we will lay back upon the victor's couch and we will watch this movie. We will watch the HELL out of this movie. In fact, I might even watch it TWICE. 

And I shall sleep the sleep of a well-Thored woman.


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