I’m standing in line for an early screening of “Star Trek: Into Darkness” and have two more hours to kill till it starts so I might a well write a blog post on a subject currently very near and dear to my heart, namely: what assholes people can act like even when they’re getting something for free.
Here’s the deal: Sarah got an email from some list she was on with a link to some free passes for an early screening of the new Star Trek movie. We’ve done one of these before, when we saw Jack Reacher this past winter. It works on a “first come, first serve” basis, so if you want to get in to see a blockbuster new movie AT ABSOLUTELY NO COST TO YOU, it makes sense that you have to show up a little early and wait in line.
I get this. It’s a trade off. If I didn’t want to stand in line with a bunch of assholes, I could have just waited and shelled out the money for a ticket, even reserved tickets on Fandango so I could just show up, print them out and waltz in. I wanted to see it for free, though, so I walked in a little after six for the nine o’clock screening, knowing this would mean I would have to stand around for two and a half hours before they started letting people into the theater. A trade-off, right?
Well, I walked in and find unoccupied lawn chairs sitting around, jackets thrown on empty patches of floor. A whole lot of attitude about “I’m saving this spot for a friend!” The management came up at one point and asked couple about the large empty space around then. “Well, we have nine friends coming.” The nice lady from the theatre management pointed out the sign that said only one person could wait in line per free pass so there was no holding spots. “They were here, but they left to get food.” I should mention that those spots had been unoccupied for the half hour that I had been waiting by this point. Anyway, the lady from management then informed them this was just too bad, and let everyone else in line behind them know it was cool to go ahead and move forward now, and though this seemed PERFECTLY REASONABLE to me, the couple flashed one another that look. You know the one. The look when someone farts at a formal dinner, or loses their temper when they need to repeat to the person making their burrito at Chipotle that they want absolutely no spiciness on their food. The one that says, “boy, are we embarrassed for how you’re acting right now.”
I just don’t get it. You think you’d be stoked about the chance to see an awesome movie before the general release FOR FREE and not act like it was your God-given right instead of a really cool opportunity that might mean you need to stand around for a little bit first.
Anyway. It’s 7:45 now. I figure I have another forty five minutes until they start letting people in. There were probably twenty people ahead of me when we got here. There might be fifty now. People keep squeezing in, although they have to squeeze a lot tighter now since I steadfastly refuse to step back, and my scowl is working pretty well to discourage anyone from asking me to do so. Perhaps if I’m lucky they’ll start piling on top of one another and reach some sort of critical mass that prompts a savage switch to cannibalism and I won’t have to perform any homicides myself.
Keep an eye out for me on the news tonight, just in case.