Tonight was the last day at Kim’s Video on Christopher Street in the Village. On the white board under â€œNew This Week,â€ there was an infinity sign and under â€œComing Soon,â€ the staff had written:
It is the end of Kim’s Video.
You could tell things were going badly way back in November, when they announced they were cutting down their hours.
When they announced a few weeks ago that they were going to close down at the end of the month, they offered their rental videos for $19.95. Trying to avoid the gaze of the guy who’s been renting me videos at Kim’s for â€“ how long? A decade? — I purchased the rental copy of the final season of The West Wing, the one that was bizarrely prophetic of what actually happened during the 2008 U.S. Presidential Campaign. Then they reduced the price to $9.95, and I got the final season of The Wire, the one about the press, and stayed up all night to watch it all over again.
By the last day, they were selling the rentals for $3.95. The comedy shelf seemed the most full; I guess laughter doesn’t last. The Auteur section seemed the most popular among us buzzards â€“ all of Pedro Almodovar had been snatched up quickly, but at the end Kim’s couldn’t get rid of Woody Allan’s â€œCurse of the Jade Scorpionâ€ even at a price tag of $3.95. They were offering the for-sale (as opposed to the rental) videos for 70 percent off, and yet remaining on the shelves when Kim’s closed for the last time were cellophane-sealed copies of â€œMcHale’s Navyâ€ and â€œGomer Pyleâ€ and “My Name Is Earl.” Campy my neighborhood may be, but it has some class.
I left the store sadly. I am going to watch â€œValkyrieâ€ now, which was in my mailbox from Netflix.