At The Movies – Baby Day

10 Aug

While running experiments on myself and those around me I do like to take some time off.  After waking up and almost going for a run I started watching TV, still a little hungover from a party night two days ago.  After a while I was hungry and needed a nice breakfast.

Showered and comfortably warm I grab a seat at the counter of a diner.  Bacon, Mushrooms, Cheese Omelet, with Hashbrowns and a bagel covered in cream cheese and jelly.

Malls have a weird feel at 11AM on a Monday.  Of the few people scattered about most are mall workers.  Then you have women, and old people.  All really walking for a purpose, not there for anything but to consume. Lots of fancy stores.

I buy my ticket to the 11AM show using the kiosk.  There are a lot more people in the movie theater, this place really should be dead, hell when I am here on the weekend for morning movies there are fewer people than those here.  I love movies and I go to a lot of them.  I work a lot of hours during the week and on the weekend I spend hours and hours at the movies.  You understand it is a spiritual obsession and experience, those pictures in a dark room.  All faces transfixed on the screen for 2 hours.

Does anyone realize that there is not single thing in this entire world where a group of people sit together watching the same thing while not talking or moving for two hours!

  • TV – maybe for 7 minutes at a time until a distraction pops up: kids, eating, ads, and finding the remote to skip the ads.
  • Sporting Event – Maybe for 3 minutes before a beer break, food break, piss break, timeouts, halftimes, TV timeouts, injury time out, whistles, fights and cheering.
  • School – maybe 8 minutes before a question is asked, a hand is raised, a failed attempt of enlightenment, and the smart kid blurting out the answer over you.

2 hours experiencing a unique and original story being blasted into your minds with a hundred people is something to really amazing.  Most everyone that goes to a film, loves the movies.  It moves us, brings us closer in the questions they raise, the discussions, arguments, the emotional movements it causes within, how much emotion we laugh out, or tears we try to hold back.  It is special.

Which is why there are very certain things I like about my movies. You can only imagine my OCD.

In the lobby of the theater there are thousands of mothers with babies. Quite literally maybe only 30 to 50 adults, but I go to the movies a lot and I have never seen this place this crowded.  What is going on.  I walk to the kiosk to get my ticket a little confused.  I am happy to find out that the movie I am going to see is in one of the big theaters, my lucky day.

So on my Monday morning off sick from work, about to enjoy a supposedly good movie I run into a couple friends’ wives.  They might be confused as to why I am not at work, but I am much more confused as to why they are pushing their newborns in strollers to the movies.

After clarifying that they are taking their babies to “Mommy Movies” I get a little worried.  I know that this theater hosts one movie a week where mothers, partners, luckily fathers take their babies to the movies.  The thinking is that they can all cry during the movie and no one will yell at them, because they will be too busy attending to their children.

After catching up with my friends we make our way to the theater, walking slowly as they are pushing their strollers.

As we give our ticket stubs to the theater attendant collecting our tickets I realize I am going to the same movie as my friends, their babies, and all the other babies in the ticketing area.  They laugh at me, and at the serious concern I have on my face.  One mommy asks the other mommy, “I wonder if they are going to leave the lights on again.”

WHAT! Leave the lights on in a movie theater?  I get annoyed when the Exit signs are too bright.  That is why I bring a hat, to push close around my eyes to give me direct view to the screen.   My concern grows, I am not listening to them talk, my day off has become a disaster.  There are no other movies at this time to watch, it’ll be another hour until the same movie is playing in another, smaller, theater.  I’m so worried I walk pass the concession stand.  My eyes are darting around the theater as if I were a cornered animal looking desperately for an escape route.

We are at our movie theater’s entrance. But wait! Before we go in they have to park the strollers.  Yes, and this is amazing. My two friend park their strollers in a roped off area, behind 30 other strollers.  Madness at the movies!

They grab their babies, pink, fluffy back back full of baby care items ready for the movie.  We walk into my temple and there isn’t much noise coming from the seating area, must be all asleep or not as big a turn out as I thought.

The dark corridor opens up to the massive 300-400 seat theater. It is packed.  Mostly mommies, but some daddies too, craddeling their babies have invaded my sanctuary.  I really thought I could sit through this.  I look around trying to find a good spot to sit, away from the babies, but it is wall to wall baby action.  I can not deal with this.

As my friends scope out their seats, I don’t even know where would be a good location, I take some small steps backwards, mumbling to them that I can’t handle it.  They understand they say.  I act a little embarrassed, they laugh at my awkwardness and as I turn to leave it gets worse.

At the side of the theater there is a diaper changing station.

Seriously? They can’t take the babies to the bathroom to do that?  On top of the what is to for sure be a theater full of crying babies (how can they not at the awesome levels the sound will be cranked up to), the smell of the diaper station will fill the fully lit theater.

I stumble out of the theater, thinking of sneaking into another movie, but I just can’t do it.  My life was just rocked.  I don’t have the energy to deal with it and walk out.  I get my refund from Customer Service, happens all the time they say.  Really? I drove all the way here to see that horror show and you knew it was a possibility? No warning?  Amazing.

I may never go into theater #2 again.  I’ll go back to the movies alright, but not theater #2, not without sweating and anxiety.  Not without worrying what mess was made under and on my seat.  Lesson learned Oh movie Gods.  Don’t skip work on Mondays, watch movies on the weekend as they were supposed to be enjoyed. Not on Mommy Movie Mondays.

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