Optimus Prime

That's Just Prime

Today I want to talk about a first world problem that has been plaguing my life lately. Forget world hunger, or the fact that the only thing keeping us from WWIII is Trump’s angst filled bromance with Kim Jong-un. My first world problem is as serious as it gets. I am woefully behind on movies, and I don’t like any of my options for catching up. I am a victim of streaming services and their arbitrary licensing deals.

This is serious shit, and the streaming universe needs to fix this so they can get more money from me.

Like millions of Americans, I came to my senses and dropped my Netflix disc plan several months back. I was getting emotionally manipulated in the relationship. I would get a disc in, and then not be in the mood to watch it. So it would sit on top of my Blu-ray player. First for days. Then for weeks. Then for a fucking month. Essentially I was paying to have this disc sent to my house, eat all of my food and stare at me with its judgy little disc eyes while I watched other shows.

And I didn’t want to send it back for something else because that would be a waste of money. That would be admitting defeat. The defeat that comes from being in a different mood when the disc gets in than I was when I delicately placed it at the top of the queue. Or when Netflix flexes its bi-polar power and took a movie from Very Long Wait to It’s in the Fucking Mail. It just isn’t fair to toy with my emotions like that. So I ended the relationship.

And don’t talk to me about Redbox, if I wanted to drive to rent a movie I would just go to Blockbuster. Oh, wait……

I have Hulu Live, Amazon Prime and Netflix. What more could a man possibly want? Movies. A man could want movies. New releases if he so desires. Or old favorites. Or the bin of “holy fuck how did I miss that” movies. A man could want access to this at the touch of a button.

But  I would prefer to have these things without being treated like the streaming world’s prison bitch.

Six fucking dollars to watch a movie? That’s more than half of a monthly Netflix or Amazon Prime subscription. For one God damn movie. And nearly as much as going to the movie theater. At that point I should just buy the fucking movie at $15. But that’s like committing to watch it three times to get value, and commitment like that really isn’t my thing.

At those prices, Amazon, who I love and use daily, is never, ever gonna get my money. As much as I want to catch up on movies. There are endless possibilities on the services I have now. And since I have the HBO add-on with my Hulu Live, most movies will eventually find me.

But I have a better solution. One that would benefit not only myself, but allow a streaming service (most likely Amazon) to make some coin from me and other like-minded people who have no intention of paying $6 per movie but would be willing to fork something over.

I think Amazon should start a bonus streaming service concept to fill the void being left by people walking away from discs. And I really think they should call it Optimus Prime, because I am a dork and apologize for nothing.

Netflix offers a tiered system, you’re allowed to have one, two or three discs at a time based on your subscription. Amazon could now do the same thing, only by streaming movies rather than waiting for discs in the mail. A subscriber would be given a certain number of credits per month that they could spend however, and whenever, they chose, but after the credits are used up they would have to wait for the next billing cycle in order for them to reset, or start forking over $6 per movie. They could even make the offer exclusive to Prime members, much like they do their Amazon Pantry service. As a Prime member, I’m good with that.

Need God in your life and want to rent Dogma? One credit.

Ashamed of yourself for not seeing Shape of Water yet? One credit.

Want to stare at Jennifer Connelly for two hours? Career Opportunities. One credit.

I was on the single disc plan when I cancelled, which means if I really hustled and watched the movies the same day I got them I could watch maybe ten movies in a month. This almost never happened. That plan cost me $11. I think eight movies at that price, that I could stream whenever it was convenient for me, would be a fair. And Amazon could offer higher options for people who wanted to consume more.

As a corporate citizen this is the right thing for Amazon to do for America.

Crisis averted. First world problem solved.

If You Don’t Vote, You’re an Asshole

I voted

I promised in the first post that this blog would be keeping politics to a minimum, because of the negativity and hate that are associated with it. And I plan on sticking by that. I won’t be discussing issues today (although I voted yes for a new airport if you’re interested). This is a post about voting in general.

I spent the first stretch of my adult life as a political consultant (don’t worry, no one knows what that is, not even those of us that did it). I was raised in a politically active, civic minded family. I was raised to believe that issues matter. That the way we are governed matters. And that we all have a role to play in the progression (or regression) of our society. As an unapologetic bleeding heart liberal I have very intense, definite and defined positions. I was also raised to develop what my father’s mentor (and the man I refer to as my surrogate grandfather) referred to as a “belief system.” It is a concept designed to help people be mindful of the issues, how your position fits in with your overall philosophy (whatever it may be) and it’s impact not only on yourself, but also on society as a whole.

Regardless of my political views, the thing that pisses me off the most is voter apathy. I truly don’t understand people that don’t vote. It’s more than just a duty and an obligation. It is your right, your chance for your voice to  be heard. More than the Bill of Rights that we spend so much time debating, this is what our founding fathers bled and died to create for us. The right to vote is their most important legacy. Because without it, everything else falls to shit.

“Democracy is the worst form of government, except for all the others.”  -Winston Churchill


There are any number of ways to educate yourself on the issues, so not being informed is not an excuse. Yes, there is a lot of misinformation out there, but common sense can navigate you past most of the bullshit if you let it.

And if you don’t vote, you are giving a minority of people power over the majority, and that sounds less like the ideal of democracy that I believe in. Also, people who don’t vote still feel like they have a right to bitch about government. If you don’t vote, I don’t care about your opinion, and I don’t want to hear it. If you don’t vote and spew your thoughts, all you are doing is hurting my ears. If you don’t vote, if you don’t make your voice heard when it matters, how much can you possibly believe in your own convictions?

So don’t be an asshole. Vote early, and vote often.