Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Hank and I walked into the movie theater lobby and noticed the enormous line at the ticket window.  Thankfully we had bought our tickets online, so we sashayed over to the ticket machine (because the ladies love it when I sashay), I swiped my credit card, and we grabbed our tickets.

"You guys getting a refund from that machine?" one of the guys in line asked

"Refund?  No, we just bought our tickets.  Is that line for refunds?!?" I replied, a bit confused

"Yeah!  Did you notice the fire alarm going off?" he asked, gesturing to the flashing lights.  "The theaters all got evacuated."

I blinked at him a few times.  I looked down at the tickets I had just received.  I turned to Hank.

"This is the first movie we've made it out to see in forever.  This theater is NOT on fire.  Let's go see our movie."

We strode across the lobby (an evacuation is no time to sashay) and got to the escalator leading to the upper floors where the theaters and concession stands are.  A security guard stood at the top of the escalator.  I turned to Hank again.

"Well, they didn't turn the escalator off.  I guess it's ok to head on up to our movie," I suggested, grabbing Hank's hand and leading us onto the Up escalator.

The security guard's eyes bugged out of his head and he made a u-turn gesture with his hand, implying that we should somehow turn this thing around.  We continued riding up to the top.

"What are you doing?!?!" he asked, "The theater is being evacuated!"

"It doesn't really seem like the building is on fire.  I figured they'd turn off the alarm soon," I stated, willing it to be true.

He sternly suggested that we go back downstairs and leave the building.  So, we rode the Down escalator as he searched for the button to turn off the Up escalator.  We then waited back on the lobby floor, as the security guard made shooing motions towards us.

About 60 seconds later a bunch of firefighters exited the upstairs theaters and came down the escalator.  The security guard rummaged around a bit and turned the Up escalator back on.  Apparently the fire alarm was over.  So, Hank and I rode the escalator back up, followed by a horde of other moviegoers.

We made our way to the concession stand and were first in line.  And we waited.  And we waited.

Whatever employee had been assigned to this stand was no longer around.  All I really wanted was some Junior Mints and a water.  We waited a bit more.

"This is a stupid amount of time to wait for Junior Mints and water," I declared, looking around for a solution to the problem.  The cases holding the bottled water were all locked, but the swinging gate leading to the employee side of the concession counter was open.

So, I went through the gate and magically appeared on the other side of counter.

(Note, when I was telling this story to my rule-following daughter the following morning, when I got to this part, she dropped her head into her hands and muttered, "This did NOT happen".  Apparently she has inherited her desire to make things true by saying them from me.)

"Ok, where are the Junior Mints?" I exclaimed, rubbing my hands together in excitement at my new career.

A woman on the sucker-side of the counter pushed forward to the front of the line.

"Can I PLEASE get a diet coke?" she begged, grabbing a cup from the stack and handing it to me.

I filled up the cup and then belatedly asked if she wanted ice.  Turns out, I was still learning the job.  She didn't want ice, so I handed her the cup, issuing my first comped drink of the day.  I figured as the sole concessionaire, that sort of thing was at my discretion.

Now it was Junior Mint time.  Those buggers cost $4.25, so I slapped down a $5 bill and retrieved the mints from the candy counter.  I was still stymied by the locked cabinets with the bottled water, so I decided to just get some Sprite instead.  I filled up a cup and left another $5.00 on the counter, overpaying for this drink which I didn't really want anyway.

It was right about then that an actual theater employee walked up.

"SIR!  WHAT ARE  YOU DOING?" she asked, somewhat alarmed at finding me serving up snacks.

So, I told her.

"Well, I wanted some Junior Mints and water, but you guys locked up all the water so I had to get a Sprite instead.  I left $10.00 here on the counter," I said, pointing at the money, "but really I'd prefer to get a bottled water.  Would you mind fetching the water and getting my change?"

This was maybe the smartest thing I have ever said in my life.  This is kind of like when a dog starts viciously barking at you, and you stand your ground and yell, "SIT!".  Hearing a command out of context like that will sometimes reset the dog.  It worked the same way with the theater lady.  She promptly fetched the water and gave me my change.

"Thanks!" I said

And, as I exited back through the swinging gate, to the land of customers, several people in line broke out in applause as the theater employee simultaneously called for security to come to the concession stand.

Hank and I quickly snuck into our theater, sashaying all the way.

And Cowboys and Aliens was kind of weak, but I had a great time.

*update*  Here's a pic Hank took me fetching the Junior Mints


Dr Becca said...

Hahahahaa!! Thanks for the morning chuckles. Your perseverance in the face of adversity is impressive.

Neither fire alarms nor security guards nor unattended concessions counters can stay these movie-goers from their intended cinema experience...

Mike said...

Thanks, Dr. Becca. It's nice to have a fallback career now.

nrd2 said...

oh thank you, hank!!

Sue said...