Beware the Video Shop
A few months ago I housesat for friends while they were out of town. On the Saturday I feed the pets then headed to the local video shop to grab a movie to watch in the relative peace and quiet of their house. I joined up at the local video shop - Videobusters in Flemington, rented a movie and returned it the next day.
I never thought any more about it until about a week ago. I got a phone message saying that my movies -- The Italian Job*, Brown Sugar and another one that I don't remember -- were now overdue. I called them back and explained that I had not hired these movies and had not even been to their shop for several months. And that, I thought, was that.
No siree-bob... This week I got a call telling me that the manager has decided that since the movies were borrowed with my card I am liable for them. I can either arrange to have the movies returned to the store or pay $35 each to replace them.
I don't see how the movies could have been borrowed using my card because that card has been in wallet for months. Unless there has been some biazzre switch-a-roo happening, that card has been no closer to Videobusters in Flemington than nestled in my bag on the passenger seat of my car as I have driven past the store.
The manager of the store is conveniently away until next week so I will speak to him then and try to clear up this mystery but it makes me wonder just what my liability is. What is to stop video stores (and I am not saying this is the case here as this may indeed be a genuine mix up) from saying you have hired movies when you haven't. I am sure a number of people would just cough up the money to avoid any bother.
* I am sure that the Italian Job is a jinxed movie...while I supposedly had this on loan from Videobusters, my son had got it out from VideoEzy. I grabbed the movie the next day to return to the store along with a long list of other chores. It was only a week later (after several phone calls) that I realised I had returned it to Blockbuster in Altona instead (and I am pretty pissy that Blockbuster just kept the movie there, making no attempt to call VideoEzy to explain the mix up). I told this story to a friend and said he had also had big mix-ups when he rented the Italian Job. Weird, huh?