I get it. Movie theater food is pricy. This is how we make our money, because the $8-14 you’re shelling out at the box office is not going to us. Our only profit is what’s sold behind the snack counter.
Since the beginning of time, customers have been sneaking in food to avoid the steep costs of popcorn and candy. But it seems people have gotten worse at hiding it.
If you’re going to sneak in what we would otherwise charge you $12 for, at least put some effort into it. Otherwise you are just going to get it taken away. “No outside food or beverage” is not a new rule. Everybody knows it exists. All theaters are different in how strict they are with this rule. But a majority of them usually have similar standards:
—If you stroll in carrying a goodie bag of sweets from the candy shop across the street, it will be taken away and you may pick it up after your movie.
—If that goodie bag is sticking out of your purse/pocket, at least you made some effort to hide it. Pass.
—If you have a small child with you, and he’s holding a fun size box of Nerds, that’s fine. Pass. (It’s a little kid. We generally do what we’re instructed to do, but we’re not Nazis.)
—If the rattle of your Good & Plenty is audible, but not visible, Pass.
—Backpacks are obvious indicators of “I have outside food!” But if we don’t see it, go on in.
It’s pretty simple, but if you are going to sneak in food, please at least be neat about it and don’t forget to throw away your food containers and snack boxes. You don’t know how unpleasant it is to clean up spilled kung pow chicken and jello cups unless you’ve spent all your working hours doing it. Some people are stuck in their ways that a movie theater is an excuse to leave a mess behind and fine. But that only applies if we get any profit from the mess you’re leaving. Because then you’re not technically paying us $3 in candy to clean up your garbage, we’re at this point just doing you a favor.
I’ve found wine bottles, soup-to-go cups, coffees, and even a KFC family bucket. If someone can sneak in a KFC family bucket without being caught, you should be able to sneak in a baggie of sweets for goodness sake.
Just make sure to throw us some cash for a soda pop every once in a while. It helps keep our doors open so you can enjoy your local theater.
So a couple of women walk into a movie theater.
Everyone’s buzzin’ about, minding their own business, getting customers through the door when they come out of their theater. One of the women asks for a manager, so we send him down.
Woman: Your movie theater is too dark. You should leave some lights on.
Manager: Well your movie doesn’t start for another 15 minutes, there should be plenty of lights on.
Woman: No, it was pitch black in there, no lights at all. I ran into a chair and hurt myself.
Manager: All of the seating lights are on.
Woman: But still it’s too dark. I hurt myself on the chair because it there was no light in there and it just came out of nowhere! *reveals cut roughly the size of a decent papercut* Who is your boss, I want to speak to him immediately.
Manager: Well it is his day off but he happens to be watching a movie, I can go get him for you if you really want me to.
General Manager: *walks out, the woman shows him her terrifying papercut wound and repeats her story* The lights that are in the theater are standard for any theater.
Woman: I am going to file this, this is ridiculous.
(So begins lengthy process of insurance this-and-that, where money is wasted, time is wasted, resources are wasted.)
Note: She was completely fine and probably just wanted some insurance cash to buy more bedazzled QVC cardigans. You know, those people that make their living by suing every business they go to? Don’t be that guy.
(If you work)
Less than 6 hours: one 15 minute break.
6-7.75 hours: one 45 minute break.
Management: “Well, I am really in the mood to save 2 dollars. I’ll just have this employee work for 5.75 hours, that way I don’t have to pay them 2 dollars OR give them a longer break, but I’ll still get the same amount of labor!”
If at all possible, keep your money in your wallet, not pulling it from your bra and straight to my hand, woman in the black leather vest.
Why are you buying an extra-buttered popcorn, nachos, candy and soda at 10 AM.
Woman: I want a large popcorn.
Me: Would you like butter on that?
Woman: Maybe, but you guys don’t use real butter. So why do you call it butter?
Me: Actually we proudly use 100% real butter.
Woman: I don’t think so.
Me: *taking out a pound stick of butter* See, we melt it down in that little warmer on the counter over there and press down the handle to put it on your popcorn.
Woman: No, that’s just the stick of decoy butter you guys keep around to trick customers, I’m not falling for that.
Me: *brings out 50 lb. box of butter sticks from freezer* I’m serious.
Woman: You don’t say.
Me: So do you want butter on your popcorn?
Woman: I already ate lunch. *walks away*
it really is as simple as that.
and you can stop yelling at me because
1. i can hear you, because i am not 85, and
2. if the walls are rumbling from the sound, i don’t think turning up the volume any more will help you
I consider theaters my first “real” job.
Where I wasn’t getting paid cash under the table, or getting paid by the government to care for mentally disabled kids.
I’d like to point out that I’m a pretty decent human being.
I don’t like to steal and I recycle.
So everything I write is from the point of view of your standard, reasonable person.
I first heard on the radio that a movie theater was going to be built in a neighboring city (even though we already had one in the opposite direction maybe 10 minutes away) and they were going to hire a ridiculous amount of zit-faced, braces-clad kids whose parents made them get a job so they wouldn’t feel like totalassholes when they kick their sweet baby bird outta the nest with little to no social interaction outside of their World of Warcraft accounts.
So I showed up application handy, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed to literally a cattle call of somber looking humans. I got the job and started my minimum wage adventure that I would eventually regret getting myself into. First of all everyone was forced to wear these god-awful shoulder padded black synthetic and sweaty block jackets. A gothic doorman uniform I’d call it. They hired way too many people so everyone had absolutely nothing to do besides clean the spot that their nameless coworker in front of them just cleaned. 90 starting level employees at a 10 screen cinema in a very small city was completely unnecessary, as the owners forgot that the business they were running was a movie theater. And the time they were starting it was called the recession. And that $11 to drag your ass away from your netflix and into a theater that still smelled like paint and drained city funding didn’t exactly have the same appealing ring it used to.
After working there for several months I started to see less and less of those blank nameless faces aimlessly pushing a vaccumm over carpet nobody’s even walked on. That’s because once the management had a hefty selection of droids to choose from, they began firing everyone. And I know what the difference is between being fired and being layed off. First they started laying them off. Then when they had enough of that, they began to pull reasons out of thin air as to why employee X was going home without any more lean paychecks. The one I found most hilarious is that they told someone that they knew they took $40 out of the cash register. The place is covered inch to inch with video cameras. When the employee assured them he did no such thing, and to show him the footage, they replied that they weren’t required to, and sent him packing. Poor fellow was an honest guy. And besides, if you really did take any cash from any register, wouldn’t you wanna go out with a bang, or at least pocket a little more than a meager $40? Needless to say I got canned over the phone one morning. They brought me in to “talk about my schedule” the day after I asked for more hours, and told me to bring in my nametag and uniform. Not obvious at all— I always bring my work attire everywhere, you know, just in case. Doesn’t everyone? I tried to make them take the hanger I brought, too. I mean they might as well since they’re so petty about the two-cent name tag that they can always slap a sticker of another name over mine.
They didn’t take the hanger.
Long story short, I got the hell outta there and got a job working at the theater 10 minutes the other way and haven’t gone back since.
Except the time I had to pick up my last paycheck of 15 bucks. They had it at the box office instead of the manager’s office. I guess they don’t want to associate with the old news. 11 of the 90 employees still work there.
They still vaccumm the same untouched carpet.