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Pezhead Monthly
December 2009

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Spring Loaded: A Message from the Editor top of page | cover page

Welcome to the pages of Pezhead Monthly. Here is this month's video version of Spring Loaded!


(direct link here)

Thanks for reading (and watching), and see you next month!

Joe Durrant
Editor, Pezhead Monthly

joe@pezheadmonthly.com


Hooray for Hollywood Video Pez top of page | cover page

One of the most exciting aspects of being a Pezhead is what I like to think of as the call to action. It doesn't happen all that often, but every once in a while, a Pez opportunity so unique presents itself and there is no choice but to heed the call and ride the wave to Pez fortune and glory.

The biggest call to action I've ever experienced as a Pezhead was just weeks before Pezamania 11, when I learned that there was, in fact, such a thing as a Pez convention. All of a sudden, I realized that this was an opportunity not only to see and buy more Pez than I had ever seen or bought before, but to meet a whole community of folks who were, like me, crazy about Pez. I remember gathering up my money, putting together a wish list, throwing clothes in my luggage, suddenly explaining to my boss that I needed the next Friday off, reserving the hotel room, printing out the map, and lots of other little things. I was anxious, I was nervous, and I didn't really know what to expect. It was spectacular.

Since then, I've been plugged in to a network of fellow Pezheads. And there have been lots of small calls to action along the way, mainly thanks to the folks at PezCommunity.com who sound the call when new Pez is found at particular stores, (If not for the recent Wizard of Oz Pez set alert, I probably never would have stepped inside a Family Video store.)

But one Friday night a couple of weeks ago, a call to action happened that brought back some of feelings reminiscent of that day in July when I learned about Pezamania. Well, maybe not quite that intense, but something close.

It all started as I was checking out the Pez happenings online. I came across some titillating news from a fellow Pezhead: The next morning, the Hollywood Video chain was hosting a special Pez event in one of its Washington stores, including Wizard of Oz and Toy Story sets, which I had, along with… an exclusive Hollywood Video Pez dispenser! My first thought was, good for the Washington Pezheads who were able to make it to this event, and my second thought was minor disappointment that it was not closer to where I live (okay, I admit, maybe those first and second thoughts were reversed).

But then, in a "what the heck" moment, I travelled on over to HollywoodVideo.com and, after a few clicks, realized that this was in fact a nationwide event! There was just one Hollywood Video in my area participating, but that was all I needed. The next several minutes involved a fury of keyboard typing, direction-finding, map printing, and alarm clock-setting. I posted a Facebook update that just as easily could have been written by a 13-year-old girl upon learning of a Jonas Brothers concert in her town. I called my girlfriend, heck, I called complete strangers.

I had that old familiar feeling, that I was about to be a part of something big, a Pez experience that I'd never forget.

After an unexplainably good night's sleep, I hopped in the car armed with my map and drove to lovely Plainfield, Indiana. Tunes were blasted, speed limits were ignored, and a general feeling of grooviness was in the air.

I arrived at 8:59 to a near empty parking lot. First one there! I boldly thought. I snapped a picture of the sign announcing the event:

Yes!!

… and then I discovered, to my shock and dismay, the other sign on the front door of the store:

10 AM?! What outrage! What injustice! The big Pez event, thwarted by a delayed opening time! After all the buildup, I didn't know what to do. So naturally, to calm my nerves, I headed over to a nearby Starbucks for a latte. I'll never forget sitting in that chair, sipping on that coffee, enjoying the free wi-fi, playing some Bejeweled and Scramble on my iPod Touch, and checking the time every. 5. minutes. The minutes and seconds seemed to crawl by, mocking my anticipation.

Finally, at 9:40, I couldn't take it anymore. I jumped back in the car and drove back to Hollywood Video.

I will admit that I was expecting a line of some sort. I mean, when I got my Nintendo Wii from Best Buy last year, I got there at 7:30am and was first in line (back when the Wii wasn't so readily available). And surely, at one of the only 3 Indiana locations that would have Hollywood Video Pez, some fellow Hoosier Pezheads would be there, right? Turns out, not another soul showed up. But that's okay. While it would have been good to hang out with some Pezheads and share the joy, I was perfectly content waiting there by myself. At least this way I knew that I was guaranteed a Pez of my own.

At 10am, the employee unlocked the door and saw me sitting there. It very well could have been the first time that he saw anyone, ever, waiting for the doors to open, at least judging by the odd look he gave me.

I rushed into the store, in something a bit less than a manic frenzy. You Black Friday shoppers could probably relate. I was expecting balloons, banners, or something to announce the big Pez event. Nothing popped out to me right away. I could have tracked down the Pez event on my own. But my mind was all over the place, so I asked the employee where it was.

He simply said, "There," and pointed to a standing Pez rack just a bit from the center of the store:

A very cool rack indeed. Not quite the "event" it was hyped to be, but at that moment, I didn't care. My quest had reached its end. I had found the Hollywood Video Pez!

I grabbed a few of them (I know the drill by now… one to open, one to keep in package, a couple to sell or trade at next year's Pezamania). I took them to the register, and as the employee saw me coming, his eyes widened considerably. I was hoping that he wouldn't restrict me to one dispenser! It turns out that he didn't care and he let me buy as many as I wanted. As he rang up my purchases, I told him the story of my last 14 hours or so, in rushed, often stuttered words, as beads of sweat were forming on my brow.

Before I left the store, I needed one more small favor from that poor guy: a picture of me with my latest, greatest Pez score. He graciously obliged, especially considering that the one other customer in the store by then (not a Pezhead, alas) was still looking for a movie. As he took the picture, I imagine he was saying to himself, "I really don't get paid enough for this."

Anyway, here is a picture of me with my big score.

What a grand time.

Looking back thouigh, I can see how this whole thing could be seen as somewhat anticlimactic. After all, there was a delayed opening time. A crowd of one. An "event" that consisted of a single Pez rack. An employee who I probably severely freaked out. And, as I found out later, the dispenser is actually available at all Hollywood Video locations (so get them at a store near you - although I'd recommend you call first to be sure they are open!).

But all of that doesn't really matter. The fact is, when I found out about the Hollywood Video Pez on that Friday night, I was elated. And then when I found it was to be mine the very next morning, I was even elateder (that is, so elated that I invented a new word). I quickly put a plan together and was soon off on another epic Pez adventure. And, of course, the end result is a unique new Pez dispenser that is now a part of my ever-growing Pez collection.

So hooray for Hollywood Video Pez, and hooray for whatever the next Pez call to action may be!

Oh, and one more thing…


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