Did The Earth Not Move For You, Too?

, , , , , , | Working | July 23, 2021

In 1974, I go to see the new disaster movie Earthquake. The high-budget movie features famous actors and “Sensurround”! This involves specialized bass speakers that create a sound wave that is more felt than heard. The speakers make the theater rumble during the earthquake scenes.

The movie follows the typical disaster movie formula. Part One introduces characters pre-disaster. Part Two shows characters during the disaster. Part Three shows the characters after the disaster.

In the movie, before the big quake, there is a pre-quake, but there is no Sensurround, and I wonder why. (I learn later that Sensurround should have been felt during the pre-quake.)

Everyone in the theater can tell that the earthquake is going to happen very soon. And then… the movie skips from Part One directly to Part Three, leaving out the earthquake part. The entire audience is wondering, “What the f***?”

Three minutes into Part Three, the movie stops and the theater lights come on. The projectionist messed up. Ten minutes later, the movie finally resumes with Part Two. We finally get to feel Sensurround, but the climactic moment in the movie is lost.

After the movie, I get in the long line with all the others wanting a voucher refund ticket. The manager is sitting at a folding card table in the lobby to sign refund vouchers and he is not happy. After ten minutes in line, it is finally my turn. The manager looks at me and says, “So why do you think that you deserve a refund?”

Internally, I just thought, “Whatever the forty people in front of me told you.”

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That’s No Way To Butter Them Up

, , , , | Right | June 22, 2021

We’ve turned off the usual self-serve butter station and instead are giving customers cups of butter that we pre-pour and seal. It’s to avoid having too many people touching the same surfaces at the butter station. The cups of butter we pre-pour are specifically measured out to be about enough to evenly cover a large popcorn. I’ve just sold a middle-aged customer a large popcorn and I hand him a cup of butter.

Me: “Here’s some butter for your popcorn if you’d like.”

Customer: “Pfft! What’s that?! That’s not enough! You’re trying to be cheapskates!”

Me: “That’s about enough to cover a large popcorn if you drizzle it evenly, but I can give you extra butter, if you’d like.”

Customer: *Furious* “That’s not enough to cover a large popcorn, idiot! Look!”

The customer opens up the butter and pours it straight down, all in one spot without spreading it out at all.

Customer: *Fuming* “See?! Not enough butter!”

Me: “Well, sir, I’ll give you another one, but I’d recommend moving it back and forth as you pour so you can evenly coat the popcorn!”

I hand the customer another butter and he does the exact same thing; he pours the entire cup straight down in the exact same spot without spreading it out at all.

Customer: “Not enough butter!”

Me: “Sir, trust me, if you move the cup back and forth, you’ll see it should evenly coat the popcorn, but I’ll give you another one.”

I hand the customer a third butter, and he does the exact same thing yet again.

Customer: “NOT ENOUGH BUTTER!”

This repeats several more times. I’m practically pleading with the customer to spread the butter out and telling him he’s probably using way too much, and he keeps defiantly pouring the butter into the exact same spot over and over again. Finally, he leaves the concession stand, fuming that we were being “cheapskates” who “wouldn’t give him enough butter!” At the end of the movie, he comes back.

Customer: “Look what you made me do! I couldn’t eat all my popcorn because of you! You gave me too much butter!”

He holds up his popcorn tub, and the bottom of the tub looks like butter soup. There’s way too much butter pooled and a lot of popcorn just sort of floating around in it.

Me: “Well, sir, as I said, the cups were measured out to be about enough to cover a large popcorn if you drizzle it over the top evenly.”

Customer: “But there wasn’t enough to do that! You weren’t giving me enough butter!”

Me: “You just told me I gave you too much butter.”

Customer: “Because you did!”

He stood there arguing for a good minute, alternating between accusing me of not giving him enough butter, and giving him too much butter. Finally, he stormed off.

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He Probably Hated The Movie, Too

, , , , , | Right | June 21, 2021

My theater has just reopened after being closed due to the health crisis. It’s a very slow day and the rest of the lobby staff has been sent on break while I work the lobby by myself. For the last eight years, my theater has had assigned seating.

An angry-looking man comes in to buy tickets.

Me: *Gesturing to the screen* “All right, sir, let me know where you’d like to sit.”

Customer: *Exploding* “I have to pick my own seat?! This is f****** ridiculous! It wasn’t like this the last time I came in!”

He stands there screaming at me for several moments before he finally picks a seat.

Me: “All right, sir, your total will be $6.”

Customer: *Exploding again* “This is highway robbery! $6 for a movie?! Unbelievable!”

He stands there screaming at me for about thirty seconds over a price I have absolutely no control over until he finally shuts up and pays by literally throwing a wad of $1 bills at me.

Customer: *Still fuming* “I want popcorn! Where do I go for that?!”

Me: “I’ll meet you at the concession stand.”

I walk over to the concession stand. The customer looks at the menu above my head and then looks down at me.

Customer: *Exploding yet again* “Oh, f*** you! I can’t believe you charge so much for snacks!”

Me: “Sir, I don’t set the prices.”

Customer: “I want a manager right now, you a**hole!”

I run to the office and fetch my manager, who ends up standing there and getting screamed at for two minutes straight by this d****ebag, again over prices that are set by corporate and that we have absolutely no control over. My manager leaves, shaking her head.

Unfortunately, corporate has made it repeatedly clear that we’re not allowed to refuse service to customers or ban them despite what they do, so I’m forced to continue the transaction. Despite his fury, he still decides to buy some popcorn and a soda. He literally throws his money at me again.

We used to have self-serve stations for butter, salt, napkins, straws, and soda. However, due to the health crisis, we’ve shut down the self-serve butter stations and now give customers pre-measured cups of butter, along with napkins and salt packets, to avoid having too many people touching the same surfaces. Additionally, we have a staff member whose job is to stand at the soda machines and pour sodas for customers, again to avoid having too many people touching the same surfaces.

I hand the customer some pre-measured butter, salt packets, and napkins.

Me: “Here’s some butter and salt for your popcorn, and some napkins.”

Customer: *Exploding yet again* “I have to put butter on my own popcorn?! You lazy p***k! It’s never, ever been like this! Lazy! When did this bulls*** start?!”

Me: “Sir, we’ve had self-serve butter for over ten years. The only difference now is that we give it to you in cups.”

Customer: “Bulls***! F****** liar!”

The customer notices the salt packets, clutches his chest, and bellows like a banshee.

Customer: “OH, MY GOD! I HAVE TO PUT MY OWN SALT ON?! ARE YOU F****** SERIOUS?! GO TO H***! AND WHERE DO I GET MY F****** SODA?!”

Me: *Completely through with the guy* “I’ll meet you at the soda machines.”

I wander over to the soda machine with his cup.

Me: “What do you want?”

Customer: “I CAN’T POUR MY OWN SODA?! WHAT THE F***?! DO I LOOK LIKE A F****** TODDLER TO YOU?!”

Me: “Sir, you just yelled at me because you have to put your own butter and salt on. Now you’re mad I’m pouring your soda for you?”

Customer: “GO F*** YOURSELF!”

I poured his soda without making any eye contact, shoved it at him, and wandered back to the box office without another word. He then yelled at the ticket-taker for asking to see his ticket. He later came out and demanded our corporate number because he wanted to “report us for being worthless p***ks.” Nothing ever came of it. I genuinely think he was just in a bad mood and wanted to be a jerk to feel better. He got mad about literally every step of the movie-going process.

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Rated K For “Karma”

, , , , , | Right | June 9, 2021

We had just started showing a movie rated NC-17, which we had not done before and never did again. Movies are usually rated NC-17 for very strong and explicit sexual content. A lot of single older men came to see the movie, unsurprisingly, resulting in many occurrences like this with the female box office staff.

Customer: “One ticket for [Movie]. I hope the actresses in it are as pretty as you.”

Coworker: *Uncomfortable* “That will be [price], sir.”

Customer: “Have you seen the movie? Did you… enjoy it?”

Suddenly, one of our new hires walks in to start her shift.

New Hire: *Loudly, to the customer* “Dad?”

The older man looks over at her, goes beet-red, and power-walks out of the lobby.

New Hire: “I guess getting a new job won’t be the only thing I discuss with the parents over dinner tomorrow.”

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Laziness Is More Widespread Than You-Know-What

, , , , , , , | Working | June 9, 2021

I’m a supervisor at a movie theater. We’ve just reopened about two months ago after being closed due to the health crisis. We hired four teenagers with our new group of hires about a month and a half ago. I get a call one Saturday afternoon. It’s one of the teenagers who’s supposed to work the night shift.

Me: “Hello, is there an issue?”

Employee: *Obviously fake sick voice* “Ugh… I can’t make it in. I think I have [widespread illness].”

Me: “Okay. Did you find a replacement to come in for you?”

Employee: “Ugh. No.”

Me: “Okay, if you really think you can’t come in, stay home.”

Employee: “Ugh. Thanks.”

Me: “I’ll see you in two weeks.”

Employee: “Two weeks?”

Me: “Well, if you think you have [illness], I’m not scheduling you until either you quarantine for two weeks or you bring in a negative [illness] test to show me.”

Employee: “Ummm…”

Me: “Unless you want to tell me the truth.”

Employee: *Alarmed* “UMMMM…”

Me: “You don’t really think you have [illness], do you?”

Employee: *Defeated* “No.”

Me: “You feel totally fine and just don’t want to work tonight, right?”

Employee: *Sheepishly* “How did you know?”

Me: “Because this is the fourth week in a row one of you newbies has called off on a Saturday night claiming that you think you have [illness]. And every single one of you has been surprised when we tell you that you either have to quarantine or bring in a negative test to show us. You knew you’d have to work weekends. You can either show up to work tonight or you can just not show up at all in the future.”

Employee: “I’ll be in at five.”

Me: “I thought so.”

Seriously… all four transparently tried the same stunt, for four weeks in a row.

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