Too Much Free Time

To MoviePass Or Not To MoviePass

Have y’all heard about MoviePass? It’s the subscription service that allows you to see a movie per day, at most theaters, for just $9.95/month. Did you hear me? Essentially you could see 30-31 movies in a month for $10! Do y’all know how insane that is? The movies at the theater I regularly attend are $10.49. For 54 cents LESS, I could see a movie every day?

WUT?!

I heard about MoviePass when it first came out, but the prices was much more outrageous. They actually made a lot more sense, considering the value you’re getting. According to TIME, the monthly cost was about $50 for “unlimited movies,” when it launched in 2011. Which still only breaks down to seeing 5 movies the normal way.

Still a deal, but it wasn’t anything I was willing to commit to. But then, about a month ago, MoviePass dropped it’s subscription fee all the way down to $9.95/month, and I perked up! As long as you see at least one movie per month, you are saving money! I go to the movies a lot. Sometimes it’s an advanced screening, but always at least once. Most years I see anywhere from 24-35 movies. THINK OF THE SAVINGS!!!

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Did I Forget How To Read?

I don’t mean literally, of course, but I am asking the question aloud because I haven’t read a full book in a year!

How on earth did this happen? I have no idea. I have many titles on my Kindle, yet they (as well as my Kindle itself) are collecting dust. I know I pledged to “read like a normal person,” and not simply inhale everything in one sitting, but I seem to have gone from one extreme to the other!

I don’t really do New Year’s Resolutions, but let me say this: I am going to get my reading swag back!

I’m going to start by finally finishing Tales From The Shadowhunter Academy, by Cassandra Clare. She initially released these stories one “chapter” per month, piece meal style. And somewhere, 2-3 parts before the end, I just trailed off. I didn’t suddenly get busy or lose interest, I just stopped reading. And then several other books were released that I had pre-ordered. They were delivered to my Kindle, where they remain.

So, I am going to get back to reading. I don’t have a number or anything, but I’m going to read regularly again. Reading is a nice escape, and now, more than ever, I think we all need that escape from the real world! I’ll check back in with everyone in a couple of months to let y’all know how things are going!

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The Skinny On Free Screenings & How To Attend Them!

freebies

The Maze Runner, Let’s Be Cops, About Time, Mortdecai, Focus, Insurgent, Age of Adaline, Hot Pursuit, Entourage, Spy, Inside Out, Magic Mike XXL, Max, Me and Earl and the Dying Girl.

The above list is all the movies I’ve gotten passes to, in the past year, for a free screening. If you add up all those movies (averaging $10 per) that’s a savings of about $140! That’s a lot, y’all!

I frequently tweet about screenings I attend, and get responses from followers asking how I always end up seeing all these movies for free. Well, I’m going to share, because sharing is caring, right?

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How Have I Lived So Long Without A Roku 3?

2014-08-30 17.56.56-3 roku_unboxing

By the time I’d only had my Roku 3 for a couple of days, it had already changed the way I watch TV. And for that, it was love at first sight!

About a month later, here are my full thoughts on the device.

We have Time Warner Cable in our household. I’m not a fan of them, but they do a couple of things really well; 1) their mobile app and 2) unlimited data. I took particular notice upon learning Roku included the TWC App in their channel store. Chromecast didn’t. Apple TV didn’t. And, to my knowledge, Amazon’s Fire TV also did not.

A little background: I have basic cable in my room. And Time Warner takes a couple additional channels away from “basic” every year. Usually if I want to see everything our subscription has to offer, I have to relocate to a TV with digital cable, or whip out my iPad. I’m a lazy individual, so that hasn’t been an ideal situation.

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Is Viggle Worth Your Time? Suz Says: “Skip It!”

viggle

So, a few months ago, I said I’d give Viggle a go. It seemed simple enough. Open the app, and use its mic to check into programs that were airing on my TV. And for certain shows, there are Viggle Live quiz opportunities to earn bonus points. Sounds easy, right? Well, it is, but it’s not a very rewarding use of my time.

I wrote that initial post back in mid-October. And since then, I’ve managed to accumulate 35,000 points. Sounds like a lot, right? On SwagBucks, 35k is $350! On Shopkick, it’s $140! So we’re talking big money!

On Viggle, I think 35k points translates to about $14. My math is a little rusty and I originally wrote this post at about 2AM. A few days ago I checked the Gift Card section and saw that there were $5 Fandango Gift Cards for 15k. Yup. That was it for me. So I redeemed some of my points to get one. I tried to do another one immediately afterwards, but the app told me I’d already gotten one. (I forgot that one can only redeem one gift card brand per day) So then I was stuck with 20k points. The only available reward that I could afford was a 1-day Redbox Movie Rental. Yippee?

Now, I wasn’t a die hard Viggler during these past 5 months, but I did check in almost every day. To have only really earned enough for two $5 gift cards really isn’t a good use of my time. Especially when I can spend just an hour or two per day on SwagBucks and acquire a $5 gift card, to my retailer of choice, every 5 days! You read that correctly. I earn enough on SwagBucks to, on average, cash in for a $5 gift card every week. Every. Week!

So 5 months? No thanks!

And let’s talk about how most gift cards aren’t even in stock at any given time on Viggle. They don’t have Best Buy, Amazon, Target, Sephora, Starbucks, or any of those retailer cards readily available. Every so often, a desirable $25 gift card will appear in the app (and for something like 60k points), but if you aren’t quick — as in taking action within the first few minutes — it’ll go out of stock and you’re SOL. Like, I said, not very rewarding to me. I don’t know many people who have the patience to, after they earn a bunch of points, continually open and refresh an app in hopes that a Gift Card reward will appear.

I just now redeemed another 15k of my points for a second $5 Fandango code. That leaves me with about 5k in points. I’m not trying for more rewards on this app. 5k is negligible. So, I’m just going to delete it.

I hear that back before Viggle got really big, it used to be easier to get rewards; more on par with how SwagBucks and Shopkick are for me now. The OGs all over the Internet and social media are constantly posting about it. It’s a shame, too. It’s a great idea that would probably be a lot more popular if it weren’t so hard to earn rewards.

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The Thing About Pre-orders…

It’s been a while since I’ve actually pre-ordered anything, but I’ve always had a few gripes with the process. I just think it could be implemented better.

I know the idea is to lock in a certain price, ahead of time, and also, so you don’t have to worry about it as the date draws near. Your method of payment isn’t charged until your pre-ordered items are actually shipped, but that’s not good enough for me.

The only things I would pre-order would be a DVD, CD, or book. (Maybe some limited edition makeup. Wait, do they even offer that? Never mind.) Those items are typically very easy to lay hands on, in a store, and typically don’t cost more than $30, at the extreme high end. In short, I don’t need to pre-order any of those items. It’s not like those prices are going to sky-rocket or I’ll forget I want to buy something. Nope. Not possible. If I’m considering pre-ordering a product, I’ll still want it in a few months, when it actually becomes available.

If I’m pre-ordering, I’d like some options. No. 1, give me the option to pay when I’m pre-ordering. There have been countless times where I hear about pre-ordering and I have the funds in hand, but when the item is released, it’s not in the budget. I’d like to go ahead and have the money taken from my account, when I pre-order, so I truly can forget about it. If I pre-order, and forget, then I’m cutting things close, or messing up my finances when my card gets charged. I’d like to avoid that. Bottom line, I’d like to have an option on a per item basis.

And what if pre-ordering had a type of layaway option? This goes along the lines of my “charging when you pre-order” suggestion. Say there’s a big ticket item set to release around the holidays. Wouldn’t it be neat if you could “pre-order” and pay a certain amount, in increments, towards your order? And whatever you might have left on release day, would be all that was charged to your card? That sounds like a good plan to me!

Do these options actually exist? I mean, it has been a long time since I’ve pre-ordered anything. So, if they do, I’d be the last to know. But if they don’t, I wish they could. I know the cost of implementing something like I’m suggesting is probably why there aren’t options like this, but I’m just brainstorming here. Work with me!

What about you? Are y’all happy with the pre-order process? What, if any, changes would you like to see?

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