15 Jan 84
Dear Bill & Diane & Laura,
We hope you enjoy the videotape & don't get too bored watching it. We are sending you the original tape and a copy of it to my parents. (They do not have a VCR, but said they would find one if we sent them a videotape.) We would like to have our tape back some day. There is no hurry. Please keep it long enough to show everyone that you think would like to it, especially everyone in Searcy (i.e., Rex, Velma, Kem, Brenda, & perhaps Dan & Alisa Davidson).
The tape is sent labeled as we normally label our tapes. When you send us a tape, please don't label it because we have pulled all those off and replaced them with a typed label. Just put a piece of paper or card in the case with the tape telling us what is on it.
We are enclosing a list of what videotapes we have. This will tell you what we already have, plus give you an idea of the types of movies we want copies of. We made all these tapes while our neighbor went to the States for 6 weeks and left us their VCR. Many of the movies are copies of tapes (masters) that we can rent for $5 a piece from the tape club. We taped so many because we only had the extra VCR for a limited time. However, now that we own 2 VCRs, we can make copies any time. We prefer to have 1st generation tapes because of the quality. (First generation HBO tapes are equal in quality to masters.)
Video taping & VCRs are a BIG thing over here because we don't have an English TV station. Everyone is very good about sharing tapes. Also, people frequently want a copy of a tape that we have which is another reason to have a collection of the best possible tapes. We will "upgrade" our collection as we find masters of some of the movies we had to settle for with poorer copies just because we wanted the movie in whatever quality we could get.
The quality of "My Fair Lady" on tape A26 is far better than what we have on A14. "My Fair Lady" on A14 will be erased & soon replaced with "Singin' In the Rain" (but it will still be 2nd generation on A14). We especially are interested in better quality on the musicals we have.
If you or Laura would like a copy of any of our tapes, just let us know. We also have "Benji" and "Darby O'Gill & the Little People" on a tape that isn't filled yet.
When our neighbor left their VCR, they left 3 blank tapes and said, "Make us copies of some things." Well, Jeannie & I could never agree on just what they would want. It made us appreciate what you must go through in trying to decide what to send us. We won't complain about what you choose to send.
However, please don't put half a movie on one tape and the other half on the next tape. Also, leave a little space between movies so you don't erase part of the ending of one before it. We very much appreciate that you take out the commercials, but don't feel that you have to on every show. When it is possible we would like to have a copy of all the credits at the beginning and ending of a movie.
We have 2 tapes that you sent from PBS that aren't labeled yet. We are using them to fill in gaps in other tapes. For example, on E9, show #1856 was too snowy & without any sound so we recorded #1810 over it. On tape E4, the last hour was not Sesame Street, so another one was used to tape over it. (Most of our Sesame Street tapes come from copies of a friend here in Naples.) We have plenty of Sesame Street shows for now. Send one only every 2 or 3 months. It is very helpful to have them all on the same tape. Sesame Street is always played just before supper here.
We need more tapes of Electric Company. Sometimes what you send doesn't turn out to be Electric Company, though you think it is.
Sesame Street #1706-1710 are about Big Bird going to Camp. This is the kids' favorite one. We would like to have all them on one tape. We are lacking the last 1 1/2 hours of that series. It may be impossible for you to know when this will be on.
The kids would like to have more Saturday morning type tapes. They especially like the Smurfs, Bugs Bunny, Strawberry Shortcake, Pac Man, & others like that.
If you will send a recent TV guide from the newspaper, we can give you a better idea of the kind of shows we would enjoy copies of. We aren't certain what is still playing in the States. We enjoyed Love Boat, Fantasy Island, Little House on the Prairie, and St. Elsewhere (& Star Trek reruns). For sure send us a copy of Love Boat if it goes to the Mediterranean. Another suggestion is the movies that were classics that play around the holidays on the SFN? Holiday Network. We were hoping you would send "The Day After." That movie got a lot of talk over here even before it was on TV in the States. We have many friends with a copy so don't worry about it. But, think of taping movies that get a lot of national attention. We are interested in anything about nuclear disasters. If Arkansas has a better football team next year, send us a copy of their bowl game. Otherwise, we don't want tapes of sports.
We enjoy movies about science fiction, musicals, historical figures or events, and movies with heroes (& comedies). We want copies of "Heaven Can Wait," "Lost Horizon" (the musical), "Close Encounters," and Walt Disney classics. Watch for movies about Jesus, around Easter time. We especially want a copy of the movie based on the book of Luke. Movies on HBO that won lots of Academy Awards are worth taping.
We have appreciated everything you have sent. We know it is a lot of trouble.
Please keep up with how much money we owe you for tapes and postage. We have lost track because we aren't sure what you are paying for tapes. The tapes in plastic cases come through the mail best. The ones in cardboard cases are occasionally hard to slide back into the case because the cardboard gets bent just a little.
I am still curious to know what video equipment you have. We really enjoy the tapes from Searcy. Thanks!! They help us feel like we didn't miss everything. The day after getting your last tape, I had to go buy a video camera. Jeannie wanted one, too. We will send you a tape from time to time, hopefully with something interesting on it.
We also appreciate the clippings from the TV guide that you send.
We hope the things mentioned in this letter will help you in deciding what to send us tapes of. We know from experience (with taping for our neighbors while they were gone) that it is a bigger headache to decide what to tape than it is to make the tape.
The number of tapes that you have been sending is fine.
Lots of love,
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