I'm here. I'm alive. I'm not in the mood to blog. Maybe tomorrow.....
I can't believe it's almost December--where the heck did the year go? Although I would have preferred to spend it on a lush tropical isle with scantily-clad cabana boys at my beck and call (Raoul--another Mai Tai! Roberto, my left
breast shoulder needs more sunscreen!), it certainly could have been a worse year than it was. The fact that the loony left and Hollywood half-wits are going to be out of power for at least four more years is enough to make it a banner year on its own, despite the lack of cabana boys. Now we just need Buck the Marine to mop up the remaining "insurgents" by New Years....
Tonight there were eleven children waiting for rides when it was time to turn off the lights and lock up. One group had been waiting 45 minutes since their movie let out.
What is wrong with people???
Yes, that was a rhetorical question.
Well, we weren't slammed last night, as I'd hoped, but we did do twice as much business as we have on Fridays for the last six weeks or so, so things are looking up. Today and tomorrow need to be awesome, though, or otherwise the owner is going to be asking me what I'm doing wrong (not dragging in the customers at gunpoint is the most obvious response).
Dear Tiger asked what movies we are showing for a buck. We have Saving Christmas and Resident Evil 2 and Princess Diaries 2 and two other less memorable titles that elude me in my pre-coffee condition.
We have a tendency to give the films nicknames. (OK--I have that tendency, and the kids have picked it up). For example, when it's time to start Resident Evil 2, I tell them I have to go unleash the flesh-eating zombies. Hey, we have to get our entertainment where we can, since we can't go watch the movies. The title of this post is another example. We have those moving light signs above each theater to tell patrons what is playing where (although I don't know why we bother since they all ask us which theater to go to anyway; God knows what they do in a multiplex if they can't find their movie in a building with only three screens!). When there is more than one show playing in the same theater we have to change the signs when the film changes, and the above post title appeared where it was supposed to say Saving Christmas.
Ok, it seemed funny at the time. I guess you had to be there.
I hope we are slammed this weekend, that folks are so exhausted from hitting the 5am After-Thanksgiving Sales that they just want to veg out in front of a mindless dollar movie. Unfortunately, it's been so long since we'd had a sold-out show that I'm afraid the clerks will have forgotten how to handle a rush.
That's ok, as long as we get a rush.
Thanksgiving dinner at my sister's was great. Luckily she has a big enough house for the twenty-three of us to mill around without jostling elbows, although we did have to take turns sitting at the dining room table. But because it was served buffet-style, that worked out pretty well, especially since a couple of my other sisters and brothers and their families drifted in after making appearances at their in-laws.
The secret to really great pumpkin pie: equal volume of whipped cream topping.
I had to bail early to get to work, where I was pretty useless since I had about as much energy as a python after swallowing an oil worker. I think next year I'll take the early shift so I can nap after my massive turkey consumption....
Blank. (Phew! now that there's something on the page, maybe I can shake off having been hypnotized by the throbbing cursor and blog something.)
Happy Thanksgiving, Gentle Readers!
Hmm. Now what? It snowed last night. I had to scrape my car off when I left work, for the first time of many to come this winter. Snow is great--as long as I'm inside and don't have to go anywhere. I loathe driving in it. I hope it will have melted off by the time I have to set off over the river and through the woods to my sister's house for the family banquet. Luckily it is an early afternoon feast, since I have to go play with projectors tonight. Sigh. Despite the fact that business has been good on Thanksgivings past, this year the big retailers are open today, which will probably cut into our ticket sales. The owner, of couse, will demand to know what I have done wrong...
That is one frustration I'm getting really tired of dealing with--the fact that all our equipment is totally jank. The other day one of our projectors suddenly started turning off its light bulb in mid-movie for no reason that I can determine and at completely random intervals. This means that the screen goes completely dark for the five minutes or so it takes for a customer to come out and tell me, and for me to go upstairs and manually restart the bulb. The film continues playing this whole time, so the customers get to pretend they are blind, sitting in the dark and listening to the audio. Then they don't understand why I can't rewind the movie.... Yesterday the first showing played fine, the second showing had the bulb go out three times and the last showing played all the way through without incident. Unfortunately, the middle showing had ten times as many customers as the other two. The owner wants to know why business is off. Duh! When I point out the almost daily equipment failure, he says I am making excuses. Aauuuuggggghhhh!!!!!!!!!!!!
He told me that he's thinking about going to first run. Ha!
Ah, well, time to beautify myself so I can spill gravy on my best blouse. There had better be pumpkin pie. I need Cool Whip™!
So Dan Rather is out--sort of. Talk about CBS being a day late and a dollar short. They really are arrogant s.o.b.s there, aren't they? They'll can somebody for interrupting a fictional show, but when their news department conspires to present fiction as fact in a deliberate partisan political smear, they act like it was no more of a transgression than belching in public--slightly embarrassing, but certainly nothing to prevent them from being invited back again. I wonder what it's going to take for these people to "get it"?
Well, Turkey Day is hurtling toward us, and since today is my only day off this week (yes, I will be working on Thanksgiving) I thought I would make a list of things for which I am thankful.
~I'm thankful that I have a large, wonderful, funny, generous, normal Dysfunctional American family.
~I'm thankful that I have a job that, when it isn't making me suicidal, is actually kind of fun.
~I'm thankful I have a car that runs and a roof over my head.
~I'm thankful that I discovered blogging as a creative outlet because it's a lot cheaper than psychotherapy.
~I'm thankful for the Master of Munuvia, the amazingly brilliant yet incredibly unselfish Pixy Misa, who rescued me from the Slough of Despond (aka Blogger).
~I'm thankful for the thoughtful insights of Frank J.
~I'm thankful for the Zen-like innuendo and amoral rectitude of Harvey.
~I'm thankful for the inspiration from dozens of other bloggers too numerous to link. (They're all in my blogroll anyway).
~I'm thankful the Pilgrims served turkey and not raccoon.
~I am profoundly thankful to be an American.
Isn't there a legal limit on how many consecutive horrible days you can have at work?
As a manager, I'm used to handling the occasional crisis, large or small. But when I get a series of consecutive and near-simultaneous crises, that's when I get flustered. Yesterday was pretty flustering.
To start the day, one of the platters wouldn't stop winding on take-up. This is bad. [For those unfamiliar with movie projection equipment, I have some pics of platters here.] If the projector isn't running, and the platter is, the film is literally torn asunder. Luckily, the platter was only creeping slowly, but I still had to turn the power off on the platter once the movie was threaded, and then remember to turn the platter back on again once I started the projector. Meanwhile, I left a message with our projector tech to pencil me into his busy repair schedule.
Fast forward a couple of hours. One of the clerks poked his head into my office to tell me that the movie in theater three had stopped. This is bad. This usually means that the film has gotten twisted, caught, or otherwise mangled and is melting from the heat of the projection bulb. I bolted upstairs to find....nothing. Oh, the projector had stopped, alright, but there was absolutely nothing wrong, and once I hit the start button the movie continued playing without incident. Now, this is creepy. There are only 3 reasons a movie will stop once it has started playing. One: a power outage--only the lights hadn't even flickered, let alone gone out. Two: a brain wrap or other malfunction that causes the machine to stop when it detects that there is no longer any tension in the film as it leaves the projector (this is what turns off a projector when the movie is over)--but the movie was fine and the dead man's switch wasn't tripped. Three: someone flipping the "emergency stop" switch--only the switch was in the "off" position, so if someone had flipped it, they had flipped it back again. As I said, this was creepy. Either someone was playing unfunny games with me, or the movie stopped due to supernatural influence.
About an hour later, just as it was time to start the nexting showing of the movie in number three, the clerks tell me that a patron had thrown up in that theater. Sigh. I told them I would wait to start the show until they had gotten it cleaned up, and headed upstairs. They were working in the row fourth from the back. Then the fifth, sixth, seventh....the vomit apparently had run downhill for half a dozen rows. After ten minutes or so I finally hit the start button. Thirty seconds later, the movie stopped. That's because it was winding onto the platter that was giving me trouble and I had forgotten to turn the power on in my hurry to start the now-late movie.
I think my ghost has moved into theater three.
The scintillating and callipygian Trey Givens is on a quest for filthy lucre, and to abet him in achieving his goal all you need do is fill out a survey here. I did it, and now my teeth are whiter, my hair is silkier, my eyesight has improved and my sex life has never been better! Of course, your results may vary....
I tried to post this comment at Paul's, but his blacklist told me that my comment was denied for questionable content. There was this message at the bottom: "Use of uninitialized value in substitution (s///) at plugins/Blacklist/lib/Blacklist/App.pm line 44." God (and maybe Pixy Misa) knows what that means!
Anyway, here's my comment, Paul:
Unless it is blood from that jaywalker you ran over, there are only a limited number of substances that could be leaking from your car. Do you have a gallon of milk in the trunk? Sometimes those have factory defects that cause leakage. Is it an older car that has rusted through the undercarriage? Maybe the half-caf Mocha Grande Latte you spilled soaked through the carpet and is dripping through the hole.
Hope I helped....
Don't you hate it when you think 'oh, yeah, I've gotta go do such-and-such' and you go to do it and it's already been done--and you are the only one who could've done it? And you don't remember having done it? Please tell me I'm not the only one this opposite-of-deja vu has happened to, otherwise I may have to go get a CAT scan or tested for early-onset Alzheimer's or something. I hope it's just because I wasn't paying attention--kind of like when you find a bruise on your shin but you don't remember walking into a coffee table? Or am I the only one that happens to, too?
I'm solar powered. The more consecutive days of overcast skies and drizzle we get, the less enthusiasm, energy and ambition I have. If this dreary weather keeps up, I'm going to dissolve into a a lump of human aspic by Monday.
But I'll still be callipygian...
I'm really sick of the press trying to snatch defeat from the jaws of victory. In the interest of "balance" they scramble to find anything remotely negative they can slip into the middle of a usually unrelated story.
Vivacious internet "blogger" --short for "Web logger"-- Susie announced today that she has the day off from work, and intends to finish a 3 to 5 page paper due tomorrow for her Business Technology class.
Fourteen years ago, Susie allegedly voted for a Republican congressman in the off-year election. Critics claim this is part of a larger trend toward Republican voting that puts her at odds with the higher education establishment, casting doubts on her ability to attain her Master's degree without compromising her political stance.
Contacted for comment, her first grade teacher, Mrs. Smith, was discovered to have passed away last year at the age of 75. Smith's surviving children denied all knowledge of the student in question. Susie has not been questioned by police in the teacher's death.
This is Susie's second-to-last class for her Master's degree.
Hey, look! I can be a "balanced" reporter, too!
Gotta watch out for that amyl nitrate mixed with crack cocaine on top of Scrapple...it's a killer!
As usual, I'm behind. I have a paper due Friday and Alliance applications to process and a mountain of laundry that's not going to wash itself. Wouldn't that be great? Self-washing clothes. I've heard of disposable clothes, but what if it was an outfit you really liked? Would you have to buy them by the dozen? Nope, self-washing is the wave of the future--just make sure I get some royalties, because it was my idea....
Unattended blog post here....
Don't blame me...Kin started it!
I've noticed that there are basically three different ways mystery writers deliver their story. One is to give the readers information that the detective doesn't have. Another is to keep information from the reader so the detective can go 'ta da!'. And the third is equal revelation--the reader finds out as the detective finds out. I like the second one the least.
I think some customers are difficult just for the sake of being difficult. Last night, for example, a woman complained that the popcorn was stale. Now, I think that with the advent of microwave popcorn, people have forgotten what "real" popcorn tastes like. I also think that it probably takes awhile for popcorn to actually taste "stale" since we routinely serve the previous night's popcorn to the first show of the next day* and people do come back for refills. However, occasionally we get a customer who is not happy with their popcorn, and if we have made fresh we replace it for them.
Last night's complainant did not come to the first set of shows for the day. She came to one of the 7pm shows, which meant we had disposed of Friday's popcorn at least 5 hours earlier and had been popping frantically ever since. I therefore assured her that we had popped that popcorn within the last hour. That wasn't good enough--she wanted popcorn only seconds rather than minutes old. Sigh. I told the clerk to go ahead and replace her popcorn with some from the batch currently sizzling in the kettle.
Later I checked back with him to be sure that the customer had gotten her popcorn. He assured me that she had pronounced it wonderful--even though he sneakily had scooped it from the popcorn already in the popper, rather than from the corn that was only seconds old.
I sometimes wonder if customers like this didn't get enough attention when they were children...
*This is because our antiquated machine, when it is working, takes for-freaking-ever to make a batch of popcorn, and the only way to be sure that there is some corn for the first set of shows is to have some from the previous night.
So the popcorn popper fell apart again yesterday, and since the man who used to repair it for us passed away two months ago, I thought we were screwed. A movie theater with no popcorn on Friday night? Nightmare time. Luckily, the employees sprang into the breach, and with the help of an old instruction manual schematic they managed to get the thing back together and working again. These are kids who learned "keyboarding" in grade school, and can't imagine life before microwave ovens (the olden days!), yet they were able to figure out the mechanics of a machine built before any of them were born. I'm proud as heck of 'em.
I think I'll try and see if I can find a schematic for the oil pump online--maybe they can fix that, too!
Ok, it's Friday, so that means that many bloggers (particularly the covert work-bloggers) will be taking it easy 'til Monday. This sparks a dilemma.
UPDATE: If this is fixed, you can all thank Jim. If it's fubar, blame Jim. ;)
Regular readers know that I enjoy pointing out the occasional idiocy of our patrons. There was the customer who asked "What's the name of that miracle movie?" (it's called Miracle), the woman who dragged her small child out of The Haunted Mansion because she "didn't know there would be ghosts in it!" and the man who requested a ticket for "the bone...the burn...um, that Supremacy movie". But last night we had a real winner:
Male Customer: "Two tickets for Cellular."
Female Customer: "Was that movie in theaters?"
Cashier: "...." (stunned speechless).
Via the Cheesemistress...
Well, my space bar responds now that I've burrowed under it, but it also now makes a groaning noise when it pops back up. I can't win, can I? Guess I'll either have to stop drinking coffee while surfing, or stop reading David's comments...
I'll probably just buy a new keyboard.
*Thank God it's Monday
The space bar on my keyboard is responding only intermittently. Probably one too many mouthfuls of coffee hitting it after reading one of David's comments. Tomorrow (my day off! Yay!) I'll have to pry it off and see what kind of gunk is under there...
I'm not going to come right out and say that things have been a little stressful between work and school lately; however, I will admit that my chocolate consumption has tripled in the last few weeks and let you draw your own conclusions.
Now off to class and then to work I go. (Heigh ho Heigh ho!)
France has acted unilaterally to attack the Ivory Coast. Don't they need a world mandate to protect themselves? Shouldn't the U.N.'s approval have been sought before France began this racist genocide? Jacques-strap Chirac is Hitler!
No blood for cocoa!
Too much time, too little to say....
Speaking as one of the uneducated, unwashed masses (wait! I thought that was Michael Moore!) who voted for the President, I feel honored--honored, I say!-- to be insulted by Jane Smiley. Of course, the whole Slate "dialogue" misses the point. Ameicans don't hate Democrats. Americans hate socialists and commies, and the Democratic Party just happens to be where they're hiding these days.
I'm not going to gloat, because I can sympathizes with those folks who feel their recent political loss keenly--I was pretty torn up myself when Clinton won the first time. I've never liked him, nor his missus, and our country paid the price for his screw-ups internationally (and the biggest price was paid on 9/11). However, America's still around and pretty much intact despite eight years of the Clinton regime, so the Democrats should be able to survive four more years of President Bush, loony-left hand-wringing aside.
John Kerry was the wrong candidate with the wrong message at the wrong time. The Democrats need to jettison the leftover 60's radicals who've hijacked their party, and become more centrist if they want to be taken seriously by the heartland.
In the meantime, I need ideas on how I can thank God that the President was re-elected, because He's pretty hard to shop for and I don't think a card is enough...
Kerry should just suck it up and concede already. Sheesh, what crybabies those liberals are!
Meanwhile, I hope somebody's keeping track of those extra 400,000 ballots Milwaukee got, and that the federal government investigates Chicago's disenfranchisement of registered Republicans. I honestly don't think that the election was as close as it seems, because if you purged all the dead who miraculously voted in strong Democratic areas, and required a picture ID with correct address to reduce voter fraud, the President's true margin of victory would be much greater....
Well, I just got back from doing my civic duty, and I guess I was wrong about the low voter turnout. I had to wait 35 minutes, but that was partly due to a bus load of Seniors from a nearby retirement home having arrived shortly before I did. They may take only the allotted two minutes in the booth, but there's no time limit on how long it takes them to get into and out of it. By the time I got my turn it was moving a little more briskly, so I figure the folks behind me probably only had a 15 minute wait.
On the way out I had a cigarette with a Kerry voter who was on her way in. We agreed that we both want a decisive victory one way or the other, with none of those Florida shenanigans.
Now, the waiting begins....