Inspired by this article about the price of popcorn, sneaking in food, and economizing at the cinema, I polled some of the staff (on Facebook and in person) about weird comestible remains that have been found in the auditorium. We aren’t strict about people bringing in outside food, though we do ask people to clean up after themselves, but it means that when staff are cleaning up after a show, they still sometimes have to deal with icky and strange things like:
- Foil shawarma wrappers, shoved into cupholders, which, on removal, turn out to be leaking garlic white goo all over the place.
- Mountains of pistachio and peanut shells, left on the floor, because apparently we’re one of those shitty bars that encourages throwing shells on the floor to sop up beer vomit. (Lesley reminded me on Facebook that this happens with orange peels too. Other people’s capacity for clementine consumption amazes me.)
- McDonald’s wrappers. Dozens of them. Especially in the weeks when we played Supersize Me a few years ago.
- Wine bottles.
- Beer bottles.
- Irish cream and other unlikely-to-be-drunk-in-large-quantities-at-a-movie booze bottles. (One brandy bottle was left by a couple I had to kick out because they were heckling Blade Runner.)
- Apple cores wrapped in napkins, again wedged in cupholders. Damp, smelly, and icky. Thanks, customers!
- Microwave popcorn bags, a quarter-full of unpopped kernels.
- Chicken carcasses and other detritus from take-home meals from Loblaws. (It’s across the street, but still, a whole chicken? At the movies?)
It’s seriously bizarre how thoughtless and/or lazy people are. Yes, we are happy (well, resigned, maybe) to tidy up the cinema, but do we actually have an army of customers whose arms are made of glass? Or who are lacking elbows? Or were born without opposable thumbs? Are the lazy, untidy people are the same folks who complain most about having to wait to come inside because we’re still cleaning up after the previous show? Is it an endless cycle of whining suckitude?
Markus said that everyone’s secretly a slob, and being in a darkened room emboldens people to embrace it. But does that also explain why at they find condoms and thongs in seat cushions at other (non-porn, I swear) cinemas in town (not at ours, thank goodness, yet)? Or why some woman spent a show clipping her fingernails until the usher figured out what the clicking sound was? Or why some guy thought it was okay to type his paper about Casablanca on his laptop DURING a screening of Casablanca?
(Asking more unanswerable/bullshit questions than an episode of ‘Ancient Aliens’ is an important life skill.)
And this (mostly) from the clientele of what’s considered the snootier indie cinema in town, so, y’know, more civilised barbarians. But, frankly, I can deal with all of the above after hearing about the adhesion qualities of nacho ‘cheese’ on a cinema floor from Kirk at Euchre last night. Sending in the crew with sharpened paddles after every show is something I hope that I never have to do. And, at least, our loos are (usually) not made disgusting by the hundreds of customers who use them every day, so ask Richard about working at Chapters if you want horror stories about that kind of thing.