I had the pleasure of seeing Dog Day Afternoon last weekend at the Film Society of Lincoln Center. I was basking in the venue's general loveliness...until I realized where I was.
The Upper West Side.
While it is a neighborhood I love and consider retiring to it one day like it's Florida, it is less than accommodating to those who are under the age of 80. Dear reader, before you cry ageism, consider the following three totally true encounters from my moviegoing experience:
#1 Concessions of a Dangerous Mind
The single line for the concession stand was long and slow. To make matters worse, an elderly gentleman got confused and bumrushed the front of the line, causing an ocean of ladies to form a second line behind him. Fearing a riot, I stayed mute. Luckily, a young woman behind me (who must live on the UWS and have to deal with such events on a daily basis) scolded the ladies as such:
"You ladies need to get to the back of this line right now. There is only one line."
"But he got to go. I thought there was two lines! Don't yell at me!"
"He's confused. You are not. MOVE."
I was in love.
#2 The Scentuous Woman
Finally entering the theater, I heard this exchange between two older women:
"I have to move seats. I can't sit near you. I have a scent sensitivity and you are wearing too much perfume."
"Well, I'm sorry. I like how I smell."
Luckily I didn't splash myself with Jean Naté after I showered. I might have been bludgeoned.
#3 Ode on a Damp Seat
After taking my seat, I noticed a woman standing in the aisle next to her seat. She was purveying the audience as if she were about to make an announcement or begin a soliloquy. Not happy with the lack of attention she was receiving, she bellowed:
"I can't sit here! This seat is so damp. I have to move seats. Someone has been perspiring all over this seat and it's so moist. It's not dry. Really, it isn't. I just can't sit here."
She took the aisle with a dramatic whirl and sat down again two rows behind me.
I'm sure her friends say this behind her back:
"Oh, that Joyce. She thinks she's Sarah Bernhardt."