The Old Movie
I recently went to a 10:00 showing of South Pacific at the local movie theater. I should explain that it
was 10:00 a.m., not 10:00 p.m., so the crowd was a bit different than it might
have been. The beeping was from hearing aids, not text messages.
It didn’t take me long to realize that I stood out from the
crowd—by about 40 years. It could have been a reunion of the original cast,
though I didn’t see anything posted. As someone who has never been an elderly
person—but has every intention of becoming one someday—I thought it would be
smart to learn from the experts how to be elderly:
up to go to the "show." A full-length faux-leopard-fur coat, for
example, might just fit the bill. And anyway, you don’t know how many more
occasions you’ll have to wear it.
- Go to
the $2 movie showings, but don't buy any popcorn. It's too expensive these
days. After all, you tell your friend, you remember when it used to cost a
quarter. And as long as we're talking popcorn, don't even smuggle your own
in, because you're old and can't eat it anyway.
your walker in the car, because the movie theater has railings along the
stairs to your seat. It might take a (really really) long time to get to
the perfect seat on the top row, but that's why you go (really really)
intermission (because you go to old movies with intermissions), shuffle on
out—again, not to the popcorn stand-- but to the ladies' room. Become very
confused and mutter to yourself as the automatic toilet flushes when you
don't want it to, the automatic sink turns on and off and on and off as
you wash, and you can't figure out if the paper towel dispenser is
automatic with a hidden sensor somewhere or just broken. Dry your hands on
your pants. (Um, I’ve actually mastered this bit already.)
intermission is over, find an employee to complain to about how dark it is
in the theater.
back into the theater and try and find your friend.
(“Iris? Iris? Iris?”)
through the second half of the show. You've seen it before anyway.
the show is over, stand up and join the shuffling mass exiting the theater.
This gives you a great opportunity to enjoy all (and I mean all) the
- If you
still have decent teeth and did fork out the dough to buy some popcorn,
get a free refill as you leave. The grandkids are coming over on Saturday.
around in your purse for your safety-goggle sunglasses and your car keys.
Keep pressing the button as you wend your way between all the Cadillacs,
Buicks, and Lincolns. Promise yourself to come earlier and find a better
parking space next time—if you remember.