The Movie Theater

The other day, I was at a movie theater concession stand, and I saw a sign that said if you order a large popcorn and a large drink, they’ll charge you $15.50 instead of the full price of $16.00. I stared at that sign for ten minutes straight. I thought to myself, “Forget the movie. This is more entertaining.” When you think about it, that sign is really insulting. It would be like a burglar telling you, “I got a good deal for you. Now, my normal policy is to pick your lock when you’re not home, and steal everything in your kitchen. But I’ll tell you what. I’ll cut you a deal. If you leave your door open for me, I’ll steal everything in your kitchen except for your spatula and your can opener.” The movie theater has got some nerve, posting a sign about their full price of $16.00 and their combo rate of $15.50. They’re definitely not advertising that as a discount. No way. They’re just rubbing in the fact that they’re ripping you off. As in, “Popcorn. $9. Coke. $7. Is that too much? You want a discount? OK. Fine. Here are two quarters, you idiot. You can use your 50 cent savings to make a down payment on a box of Jujyfruits.”

I paid $16.00 for the popcorn and drink. I refused the discount. It was a matter of dignity. I gave the guy $16, he tried to give me back two quarters, and I said, “Don’t insult me with a 3% discount. Just give me the $9 popcorn and the $7 Coke–and then when I’m in the theater and the previews are playing, I’ll take out my phone and leave a Yelp review where I’ll instruct an angry mob to come down here, take all your popcorn, and shove it down your throat.”

So I bought the popcorn and drink. Then I went into the theater, and I watched the movie Fantastic Four. It’s some movie. My favorite part is the part where I was unconscious. Here’s how the moviegoing experience works for me. If I’m ten minutes into a movie and I come to the conclusion that the movie is boring, my body automatically falls asleep, just like how a grizzly bear automatically hibernates in the winter. When I say that to people, they tell me, “But a movie ticket costs you $9. Don’t you want to get your money’s worth?” Well. Here’s my counterargument. Let’s say you have $9 worth of rotten milk in your refrigerator. Does that mean you should pour the rotten milk on your Cinnamon Toast Crunch? That explains how I look at movies. Most of them are the equivalent of $9 worth of rotten milk. They should have that as their title. You go to the theater and say, “Two adults for $9 Worth of Rotten Milk.” “OK. That’ll be $18.”

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