Netflix DVD ending September 29th, 2023

I just received the sad email that Netflix will ship its last DVD on September 29th, 2023.

I’ve been getting DVDs by mail from Netflix since at least 2000 and have seen it go through all the different disk mailers and service speeds as they opened more distribution centers and then closed those in recent years. My current monthly bill is $8.81 after taxes and I can just about get a DVD a week.

Dear William,

For 25 years, it’s been our extraordinary privilege to mail movie nights to our members all across America. On September 29th, 2023, we will ship our final iconic red envelope.

While times have changed since our first shipment in March 1998, our goal has remained the same: to provide you with access to the broadest collection of movies and shows possible, delivered directly to your door, with no due dates or late fees.

As the DVD business continues to shrink, it’s going to become increasingly difficult to achieve that goal. In our final season, we’ll continue providing you the best service possible, all the way to the very last shipment.

You may have some questions, and we’ve tried to answer them in our Final Season FAQ – and if you want to share something with us, you can send feedback here.

We sincerely thank you for joining us on this amazing journey. We could never have shipped more than 5 billion discs without movie lovers like you. It’s been a genuine privilege to share movie nights with you.

Pop the popcorn, fire up your player, and enjoy this final season of red envelopes.

The Netflix DVD team

I’ll definitely be sad to see it go because I’ve been able to add movies to my queue long in advance of them being available and then being pleasantly surprised when they arrive in the mail.

I’ve never found streaming to be as good an experience of browsing and discovering movies I want to watch.

US Travel circa 1966

Bill, Sue, Maxine & Barry

I’ve heard about a trip my parents took around the US before I was born. I have seen pictures from the trip, and heard stories of things that happened. My father died in 2016 and my mother died in 2019. As my sister and I have gone through things, we come across items that bring up questions. This map is one I wish I’d been able to have conversations over.

One of the fascinating things with the map is that it is from 1964. The US Interstate Highway system was not complete at the time.

The Interstate System

The Interstate System

1970s Rain Jet Sprinkler Install Guide

Recently going through my parents old house documentation we came across this lawn sprinkler installation guide. I especially like the illustrations with Mr. Rain “Chet”.

This was all in a folder labeled Permanent Home Improvements Carrolton Texas. We moved out of this house in 1976. I’m quite happy that so much of my hording of history is purely digital, though it’s not filed as well as my parents paper files.

There was also a full color glossy brochure for Buckner 1972 Lawn and Garden Sprinkler Equipment

Annoying Flashing High Mount Stop Light on newer cars

I know that to some extent I’m yelling at the cloud. I’ve mostly seen this feature on new Toyotas, but I also recently saw it on a new BMW. 

Old Man Yells at Cloud

The CHMSL flashing feature seems to happen when a person first applies the brakes after a period of not using them. It blinks the lamp three times before leaving them on constantly. This feature might be useful when traveling at highway speeds and it’s been a long time since the person has put their foot on the brake, but when traveling in city traffic it seems that the light is just strobing constantly. With modern LEDs there is no warm up time, so it’s like a red strobe light is going off at eye level.

The last update I found on Wikipedia said that the lights were generally not permitted to flash, with a couple of linked rulings from 2010.

My searching for details found various forum questions and answers, including how to add blinkers as after market options, but no details as to where the rules may have changed, or if it’ll be a new requirement going forward.

I certainly hope that it’s a temporary trend that goes away.

Strange Cereal Box Artwork

I recently bought some cereal and the back of the box struck me as fairly odd.

I was initially thinking that the really odd part was simply the expressions on the kids faces and how much joy or fear they seemed to be expressing. I’m not a morning person and I rarely express much joy while eating my breakfast cereal.

CocoaPebblesFront CocoaPebblesRear CocoaPebblesRight CocoaPebblesLeft

Because I know that I find looking at old consumer goods interesting just a few short years after they seemed normal, I decided I needed to scan a copy of the box. After I was looking at the pictures just now, I realized that the image could be titled Colon-Blow and seems to be something I might not want to be eating.


My First PC

I found the receipt for the first PC my father bought this last weekend. They are in the process of significant downsizing, and while I don’t want to uselessly clutter up my own space with things that were in their garage, having a PC in my home for my final years of high school affected my entire life.

How much did you pay for your first PC and enough software to make it useful?

My father paid $6512.45 in 1983.

This was for a 64k PC running DOS 2.0, a word processor, and a printer.

MicroAge Computer Store IBM PC Invoice Page 1

MicroAge Computer Store IBM PC Invoice Page 1

MicroAge Computer Store IBM PC Invoice Page 2

MicroAge Computer Store IBM PC Invoice Page 2

The Hayes 1200bps Smart Modem alone cost $699.00.

This machine had two 360k floppy drives. I ran a bulletin board system that booted and ran from one floppy drive, and stored files available for download on the second drive.A box of 10 360k floppy disks cost $50.

The printer adapter was not built into the machine and had to be purchased separately for $150. One extravagance he purchased was the microbuffer for $349 that went in-line between the computer and printer, allowing the computer to send more of its print job to the microbuffer and the microbuffer would feed the printer at the speed it could accept it. This was long before anyone would think about using multitasking in a home computer, or even think that printing might be a separate task.

I’ve always hated the US practice of tipping.

I really haven’t liked the increase in expected percentage being given as a tip. The entire reason to use a percentage to begin with is that it gets proportionally larger as the underlying value gets larger.

I came across an article sharing much of my sentiment, and followed it to a second article that had lots more information about the practice of tipping, so I thought I’d share them here.

Tiananmen Square 25th Anniversary and Right To Be Forgotten

I find it extremely interesting on this the 25th anniversary of the suppression of Tianamen Square Protests that Europeans are trying to implement the Right to be forgotten.


25 years ago I had just started working at Microsoft and was using the internet to communicate inexpensively with friends still attending university. I had a screen on my desk that could run 640×480 resolution. I remember seeing the image of a solitary man stopping a line of tanks displayed on screens around the office. I was graduating college, the cold war was ending, and students were demonstrating for democracy in China. What could be better.

This morning on the radio I was hearing about how most of the young in China didn’t know the recent history of demonstrations in Tiananmen Square, and thinking of the irony that Europe is trying to make the right to be forgotten law enforceable. If the knowledge of what the Nazis did had been forgotten by 1970, where would Europe be now?

Wooden Nickels

The Coug - Good for one beer on the last Tuesday of the month

The Coug

I  came across a jar of old coins recently and inside were a couple of wooden nickels. These were tokens redeemable for beer at taverns that I frequented in the years adjacent to graduating from university.

I’ve not spent much time in taverns in recent years. I’ve definitely not spent much time near the coug in Pullman Washington.  I’ve got fond memories of beer and burgers in the coug. It was the bar that was closest to campus, right between campus and fraternity row.

Good for one Draft Beer

Marilyn’s Central Tavern

Marilyns Central Tavern was in downtown kirkland washington. I believe it still exists simply as the Central Tavern. I was a team member in a billiards league during early 1990 that went to many taverns around the east side of lake washington. It was during that time I learned the difference between a bar and a tavern. A tavern doesn’t serve alcoholic drinks stronger than beer and wine, while a bar serves hard alcohol.

These wooden nickles were bigger than a half dollar, though significantly lighter because of the wood. I don’t remember what the tokens cost. I vaguely remember the coug having two dollar Tuesdays, where a burger and fries cost $2, and the beer was sold in smaller plastic cups on those days that many empties would be stacked up by the end of the evening.

Do these customs still exist?

The Coug Obverse

The Coug Obverse

Marilyn's Obverse

Marilyn’s Obverse

Size with Quarter for Comparison

Size with Quarter for Comparison