The City Needs to Change

Filling out my exit interview at Popcorn Sweep Heaven, it dawned on me that some important things are out of the hands of the wise and the good.  For example, ‘What did you find was the worst part of the job?’ Easy. The customers. ‘Any ideas for improvements?’ Yeah, the customers. ‘Any more comments?’ Customers – sigh.

So it seems pretty clear where the problem lies. Perhaps my interview would be better off in a York council in-tray as opposed to Poo Cinema’s bin-tray. After all, aside from leading by example, there’s little the company can do about the clientele’s perception of the site, cinema as a social/cultural occasion, or indeed themselves. I believe this is where it starts.

The majority of people we serve have poor manners, poor posture and articulation, and a complete lack of interest in film. So many times I’ve bound up to my till, ready to serve, only to witness a poorly scripted kitchen sink drama, always ending the same way.

‘What’s that one about?’ (Achieving creative and hitherto unexplored pronunciation and rewording of the title.)

‘Dunno. Whatever you want. What d’you wanna see?’

‘Dunno. What d’you wanna see?’

These conversations always begin with a couple marching into view as if on a mission, continues with them staring cluelessly at the screens above the stand, assessing the options based on title and show time alone, and ends without a hint of human engagement with the people who are there to help, and have already seen most of the films for free.

In short, people don’t care. People used to dress up to go to the cinema. It used to be a date default, a place of luxury, of excitement. Some still dress up for the theatre. Not enough. Some still sit in awed silence. Not enough. But that’s another issue.

Maybe if this city tried putting on its frocks and dancing shoes and enjoying the latest Empire before embarking on a forty-minute journey to the pictures, they would have a little more investment in the success of their leisurely outing, and a little less resentment for those they currently hold responsible for heinous overpricing and time-changing crimes.

Maybe we could all just get along one day.

Of course, it can’t help that most cinema these days looks like this

and not like this

I do hear you York. ‘Why bother? It’s only Catherine Zeta with her hands on some thirteen year old with a beard.’ Maybe, just stay at home this week and the industry will get the message?