All the world’s a stage we’re going through. ~Lorrie Moore
While writing TAKEN by Movies, I was reminded of the time I took Kyle to see Avatar. Another day at the movies in December 2009, January 2010. A day I had to defend my actions to a little tyke.
It was a Saturday, late morning, and it was raining none stop. It started the day prior, and continued into the next, without a sign of letting up. It was a typical, dreary, foggy, rainy, dark, cold Western Pennsylvanian day. The kind that makes a person want to curl up on the couch with a blanket, in front of a roaring fire, and read a book or watch a movie. If it was a little colder, we could’ve played in snow, but alas no such luck. So going anywhere was a brave move, and forget about playing outside. Kyle and I watched some television during the morning hours, and we played with Thomas the Tank Engine and his Matchbox cars. However, the day was dragging along without the sign of promising fun.
Kyle came to me and said, “Aunt Heather (I believe I was Aunt Heather at that point, but I could have still been Aiya) I have an idea!” He had such excitement in his eyes! Kyle always did beat around the bush when suggestion anything, but his ideas were usually really good. He continued, “Since it’s a rainy day, and we can’t go out, and you said during rainy days, it’s a good time to go to the movies. Let’s see a movie!”
First, I was cracking up, because that kid never forgets ANYTHING! I do remember saying that very thing, almost word for word. Rainy days are perfect for staying inside and watching a movie! I must admit that was a great idea, and I told him so! We jumped on the computer, and I looked up the list of movies playing and showtimes. Naturally, in addition to the movie titles, advertisements with the cover of the movies appeared in bright colors, as well as an option to watch the trailer. Kyle, having a keen eye, was stopped at the image of Avatar. He also pointed out the button to watch the trailer, which we did. Okay, I’m hooked. Even though I was interested in that movie prior to this.
For a change of pace, I decided to take Kyle to Lowe’s theater in Pittsburgh’s Waterfront. They were playing Avatar in 3D! This would be Kyle’s very first 3D movie. I was excited for him. Since it was going to take us about an hour, just to get to the theater, plus parking, getting in line, and finding our seat before the movie began, we had to leave straight away!
It was a miserable rainy ride, but the idea of seeing Avatar, a movie we really wanted to see, and in 3D, kept us both focused. The theater was packed! Kyle commented that perhaps others had the same rainy day idea. I concur! We stood in a long line within the velvet rope area. When we hit the midpoint in line, I looked at the time to realize our movie was about to being. Still, no worries, I knew they would play a half an hour of previews, I thought we were still good. I thought.
During this time, Kyle thinking ahead, suggested that he go and get us popcorn and water while I waited in line, to keep things moving along. I must admit, that was another great idea, however a scary one. Kyle was only eight years old. Yes, I trusted he would not go off with strangers, yet he was young enough to have that decision taken from him. Reluctantly, I gave him money and instructed him to go to the one counter, where I was able to watch him from my position, and not stray away. He did as instructed.
Just as I got to the ticket counter, still craning my neck to watch Kyle, I noticed he too was done and headed back. I asked for two tickets, for the 6:00 pm or 6:30 pm showing (I can’t remember the time). Sadly, she informed me it was sold out, and the next showing was around 8:00 pm or 9:00 pm (Again, I can’t remember the exact time, only that is was too late). They didn’t even have an opening for the non 3D movie! Not wanting Kyle to wait that long to see a show, and then have him try and stay awake while watching, I asked my big screen buddy if he wanted to see another movie. Naturally, there wasn’t a movie open, at least not appropriate for him, or one he wanted to see. Plus, he insisted on Avatar.
Okay, okay, I purchased two tickets to the later showing. I had a plan!
With popcorn and water in hand, Kyle and I made a beeline for the Avatar theater, the earlier showing that just begun. I handed the ticket person our receipts and entered. Yes, I know what I did. I entered the wrong theater according to our tickets, but I wasn’t’ going to wait that long to see a movie, especially with a little tyke, and being an hour away from home.
Upon entering the theater, Kyle looked at me with worry in his eyes and said, “Aunt Heather, this isn’t our movie, we’re in the later one!” O, no I was breaking the rules. Yes, I kind of was and I didn’t care. I told Kyle my reasoning and I also added, “There are always empty seats, and I’m willing to stand or sit on the steps to watch the movie, making way for those who purchased tickets for this showing.” I also told Kyle that I was aware of my wrong doing, and if we got in trouble and got kicked out, and I lost out on the movie, that was a price I was willing to pay.
Kyle was stressed over my actions and was torn, he wanted to see the movie, and he didn’t want to call me out on our criminal activity, especially since he was now my accomplice, yet didn’t like breaking the rules. He reluctantly agreed and followed me in.
The previews were almost done. At that point I figured the general public was seated. I spotted a couple of seats close to the front, not my favorite seat, but I had no right to be picky. I grabbed them, again if we were told to leave I would have without incidence, or if someone didn’t have a seat, I would have immediately offered mine. Neither happened, and besides, we only needed one seat, Kyle continued to sit in my lap, especially when the action consumed the big screen.
Before the movie started, we got cozy, started munching on our popcorn. It was actually perfect timing. At the time, Kyle was wearing glasses. He couldn’t make up his mind, if he wanted to wear his 3D glasses over his glasses, or watch the movie without his glasses, and just wear the 3D glasses. I never thought of such an issue, me never wearing glasses. Eventually, Kyle opted to watch the movie wearing his 3D glasses over his glasses. (He was instructed by the eye doctor to wear his glasses when he watches television or for reading. Kyle could not have handled breaking two rules in one night!) It looked a bit awkward, but he managed.
About mid movie, Kyle leaned into me and said, “Aunt Heather, I feel a little dizzy.” The 3D glasses made the kid seasick! Seriously? Yes, and I couldn’t resist chuckling to myself. I too was a little off balance, but I think it was because we were so close to the screen. Eventually, Kyle took his red rimmed 3D glasses off, to never wear them again. In fact, to this day, he prefers NOT to watch a movie in 3D. (Partially because he hates to layer up the glasses, not that I blame him, and partially because it gives him a headache.)
Well, the movie was a success, and by the time it ended, it was bedtime for us both. We left rainy Pittsburgh to arrive in rainy Latrobe. Loving all things Kyle, my parents wanted to see our little man and hear about our movie adventure.
Kyle was all smiles when we walked into the living room. (That was mostly for the excitement of seeing my parents, which he didn’t see all day)
The story that Kyle told them, had me flabbergasted. He didn’t focus on the movie, but instead on my quasi illegal activity. He told a story of how we sneaked into the theater, leaving out that I did indeed paid. He continued to inform my parents, the theater was full, yet we grabbed two seats. Correction, we grabbed the seats no one was sitting in. He also stated that he went off by himself to get our popcorn and water, again leaving out that I had my eyes on him the entire time. Boy, his story made me out to be a thief and bad parent! His story was quite colorful and full of adventure. I guess Kyle has my talent for storytelling. I didn’t mind, until mom brought it to my attention that he may tell others his story. I really didn’t want anyone to think I set the example for a kid by sneaking into movie theaters, or letting an eight year old run wild in a busy public place. I did have to correct him, before he continued to tell my parents about the movie.
Regardless of the rain and a few roadblocks, I had a great time, as did Kyle!