I see it a dozen times every day.
There is this guy. And this girl. There is attraction, or at least lust. And they are going to see some trashy adventure flick together because it’s the cleanest excuse to be beside one another in the dark.
They pick a bad movie that’s on the way out because it’s much more likely they’ll get an empty theater.
This is probably their first date, probably the first time he has been able to elude his wife.
I know this, I see the signs. I see them every day.
And I have to sell them a ticket.
Say, “Hi! How are you this evening?” Put on a smile. Say, “That’s Twenty-two fifty, please!” Keep cheerful. Make eye contact. Yes, with both of them, even though I know thier chemical soup is not long for Equalibrium. Hand them a recipt and the tickets. Say –
A man comes up. This new guy interrupts the litany.
“Jack? It IS you Jack!”
“Yeah. Hi John.” He is not happy.
“I’m afraid I’ve forgotten your wife’s name…” He looks at her, expectant.
“Oh, uh…This is Beth.” He presents his date. She is wearing a necklace that says “H”. Her name is not Beth.
They say the usual – weather, job, “long time no see”. The woman who is not Beth nudges the man called Jack. Does John see? Does he know? The questions are in her eyes.
John wraps it up – finally, I get to say, “It’s the fourth theater to your right, I hope you enjoy the show. Next please.”
It’s the same every shift. All the time. A ticket window is a window into lives.
I see, I hear, I can figure it out.
At last my shift is over – my life begins.
I have to go, my date is here.
We never go to the movies.