Thursday, December 2, 2010

You Again

Today at work, two older ladies with permed white hair came in dressed in colorful jackets. They chattered to each other between the door and where I stood at the concession counter, selling movie tickets. They reached the counter and stood for a few seconds, smiling at me expectantly.

"Oh!" one of them shouted. "Nance, what are we seeing again?"

"Um, You... something... You There?"

"You Again?" I supplied.

"There it is!" the first one shouted triumphantly. "Great, we'll have two for that. Can we go in now?"

I told them they could and pointed them in the right direction. They took their ticket stubs and disappeared around the corner. Eventually the two ladies reappeared in the lobby and sat on a bench to wait and talk.

I helped several more groups of customers and when I looked up, "Nance's" friend was leading another woman by the hand toward me. This new woman had dark tight curls and skin the color of milky coffee. She wore thick, wide glasses and had two deepset wrinkles around her mouth when she smiled.

"Hello again, Miss--" she squinted at my nametag, "--Katie. Could you please tell me what it is we're seeing again? I just clean forgot. That's what happens when you get old." I reminded her of their movie and she shouted to her friend across the lobby, "That's right, Yooou Again! Not me. You Again." They laughed at her joke and then she indicated her new friend beside her. "Now this lady doesn't know what she wants to see... I think she should see what we're seeing, You Something, but I thought I'd bring her up here to you kids and you could do your thing and sell some movies!" She sounded excited, like she was bringing me the opportunity of a lifetime.

Her new friend finally spoke up, "Well, I was going to go see Wall Street, but is this other one good?"

The first woman began to make her way back across the lobby, but turned to quickly put in her two cents on the subject, "Oh that ones' so serious! You want a comedy, don't you?"

I told the woman in front of me that I'd heard very good things about You Again and that Wall Street wasn't for another hour. I kept to myself the fact that You Again also seemed to be the current favorite for the Over 60 demographic.

"I could use some laughs," she said hesitantly.

"She said it's called You Again," the first woman loudly informed her friend on the bench again.

I suppressed a grin, but the woman in front of me smiled warmly. "Yes, I'll have that one then. That You Again. What a couple of sweethearts..."

I gave her her ticket and she wandered slowly over to the bench where her two new friends sat. The three of them sat and laughed together, and eventually they shuffled up the ramp to their theater.

After that encounter, I had a warm fuzzy feeling that lasted me for at least the next hour. When it wore off, I munched on a handful of fresh, salty popcorn and I hoped that one day I might be 80 and outgoing enough to make friends at the movies.

Mumford & Sons, White Blank Page

Transcribed from earlier in the evening--

I'm having one of those moments that you just need to write about and here I am with a pen and a half blank sheet of computer paper, so I am going to do just that. It's 11:20 on the first night of December. I'm sitting with a friend in the upstairs office at work; the closing tasks are done and we're listening to music and for the occasional thud and clatter of a movie "dropping" out in the booth hallway. We both smell strongly of popcorn and we're each curled up in our own black leather swivel chair. It's been a long day and it's nice to just sit and be still for a while. My friend's thumbs flit furiously across the screen of her iphone and I hold a clipboard across my knees, scribbling.

There's a thin, silver cd player on a desk in the office and we are blasting the new Mumford and Sons cd she bought at Walmart late the other night. Up until this evening, I'd only ever heard their more popular song, "Little Lion Man," but this whole album is quickly getting under my skin... I'm slowly coming to the decision that I'll have to make my own late night stop at Walmart on my way home from work.

The lyrics I'm catching, along with the singers' throaty, gravely, melancholic voices--and the late hour are making my eyes a little watery. It is also safe to say I have a newfound love for the banjo. And I'm remembering how much I love the fiddle. This night and this moment were simple and uneventful enough, but they'll stick with me for a while.

P.S. I went to two Walmarts tonight and finally, at the second Walmart I found their last copy of the cd. I also looked at the tracklist and found track five, the song that had stuck with me the most as we listened and the title was too perfect-- "White Blank Page."