In The Cinema Light

By Frank Rutledge

Tuesday, 2 p.m. and the movie house was nearly empty.

I anticipated watching Ingmar Bergman’s, “Scenes from a Marriage” on the big screen, when the man two rows ahead of me dropped his left arm from the girlfriend’s shoulder and shot his right hand up her shirt. He started his ape-like pawing, and I saw her eyes pierce through his skull with dismissal. Annoyed at her boyfriend’s interruption she elbowed him in the ribs. The distraction also pulled me from my reverie. At the cinema, I feel as if I’m sitting on the nose of a train engine blasting through a strange landscape. I threw my crushed up popcorn box at the back of his head. Turning to glare at me and seeing my middle finger in salute, he quickly turned back around.

Just then the girlfriend stood up, faced me and said,

“What is your problem, dude?”

“Why don’t you get a room?” I said.

“This is a free country. You’re just jealous old man cause you’re all alone. You want some of this and you can’t have it,” she said.

“Don’t look like he can either,” I said, cracking a smug grin.

By now the only other three patrons in the place were shushing us.

Frustrated at her lack of words she pulled up her Van Halen T-shirt and shook herself at me and the rest of the theater. I snapped a smartphone photo, jumped up and left. As I departed, the three men and her boyfriend applauded.

Walking past the concession stand, the teenage employee asked if the movie was alright and why was I leaving. I replied that the movie dragged and became annoying. “But there was one really great scene.” Palming the phone in my coat pocket, I smiled and exited the building.

Frank Rutledge is an Associate Editor at FewerThan500. Read more about Frank.


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