thanks for the replies everyone. When I say I'm not sure what happened, here is what I mean:
I loaded the film the same way as I always do - correct routing, stopping with the arrow in the right place, closed up the back as normal. then I gave it to my friend to wind as I started loading a second back. I said "just wind it until it stops". normally of course it is only about 4 or so winds and then it stops automatically at the first frame. However I wasn't paying attention and he didn't know any better and for some reason the back did not automatically stop the film, so he rolled it all onto the take up spool. Bascially the back seemed not to recognize that a film had been loaded. It was a weird glitch since I loaded another roll in the back and it worked just fine.
The film in a normal load passes over an end roller. That roller detects the film and meters the frames as it counts.
If the film is not making good contact with this roller or there is an adjsutment out of spec dealing with this roller... it will wind on forever nonstop.. as well as some other intermittant inconsistancies... like you say it has a symptom with the dark slide.
As also mentioned by others.. there is a small tab that gets pushed in when the door is closed, that engages the counting mechanism and roller sytem. If the tab is not properly pushed in or the mechanism is out of spec it too will give you similar symptoms... but still part of trhe same roller mechanism linked by a signal arm; that is the most comon part to go out of adjustment..
But it all starts as you described above.. all weird quirky symptoms... asking for service.. not screaming yet. Perhaps the service costs too much these days... so buy a backup for $25 before this one drops dead on you.. cheaper solution?
Anyone can make a Digital print, but only a photographer can make a photograph.