In the Spring of 1989 I was working for a company called Cannatta Communications. My main job was Duplication Operations where we duplicated thousands of VHS tapes for corporate clients and others like Block Buster. My secondary job there was as House Editor. What that means is if the Producer/Editors were busy, I would help take up the slack by editing small jobs.

One job I recall clearly is working on a corporate video for Exxon. Exxon had a Producer there that worked with us named Cindy. Cindy knew what she wanted the finished product to look like but really did not understand the logistics of how a video is put together once the scenes were shot. Back then we edited on 1 inch video machines and Beta Cam machines. I remember when we were getting close to the end of the edit session, Cindy would want to make a small change that would end up requiring a lot of work on my part. Once I had it like she wanted, she would change her mind and want it a little different. When I completed that, after much frustration, she decided the first way was best, and could I put it back. Editing back then is not like now where changes are made easy, on video tape it was a lot of logistics to change something and you had to be careful not to mess up a lot more than the little bit you were working on.

After about a week of working with Cindy and all the little changes she wanted I was glad to hand the project over to be delivered. I made up the bill to go to Exxon and in there, as a joke I added 10 percent for a “Cindy Surcharge”. The next week the bill was paid and the 10 percent was included. I called Exxon to tell them the surcharge was a joke and they over paid. They responded, “We know Cindy and are glad to pay the surcharge”