The Cutthroat World Of Movie Lines

“No, man. I dunno, man,” someone standing behind Jake was saying into a phone. “No, that’s cool, it’s just some bullshit. Whatever, yeah. I’ll see it some other time. No, it’s cool, I can talk. I’m just in line.”

Jake grimaced to Drew, who didn’t seem to notice the incessant talk going on behind them. The same talk he couldn’t stop hearing.

The line to see the new remake stretched all the way out the door and around the corner, where they waited in line. He wasn’t sure why he was there. Drew said the movie had some new technology that let you smell what was going on during the movie, and the seats moved in conjunction with things happening onscreen. He wasn’t sure that was going to make it any better. In front of them, five people were all playing some card game on their phones. The phones were shining several different hues of card-table green into the night air, illuminating their owner’s faces.

On the street, a standoff was in progress between a car leaving a parking space and two others vying for the same spot. Everyone in line had watched as the second car cut in front of the first, blocking the leaving car in. Realizing his mistake, the second car backed up, further blocking out the first car waiting for the spot. To avoid an accident, the first car had to back up. The leaving car squeezed out of what space had been made.

Honking ensued. Middle fingers were thrown about. The second car, a large SUV, eventually muscled its way into the parking spot like a lion at a feast. The vanquished car drove away, yelling and cursing from behind a closed window.

General booing erupted from the crowd in line as the two people inside the SUV got out and proceeded to the back of the line for the movie. They looked down at their phones and avoided the jeering faces of the crowd.

“No, yeah, dude, it’s just so stupid,” the man behind Jake was still saying. “What? No, people are mad about some parking thing. No, I’m going to a movie. I said that. I dunno, I think Rachel worked on set for it, so I said I’d see it.”

Jake realized the line had not moved for thirty minutes.

“Hey, wanna leave?” Jake asked Drew, who gave him a quizzical look then shook his head. “Ok. Well, I think I’m going to go.”

“Why?” Drew asked.

“I dunno, just to make a choice, I guess.”

He stepped out of line, and in one equal and opposite reaction the man on the phone stepped forward, filling in the negative space. Drew gestured for him to come back, but he crossed the street instead. The line now looked like one single, stalled mass of people going nowhere.

He wondered what he was going to do for the two and a half hours Drew would be in the movie. But that was the only exciting question, and one worth exploring in the night air.