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The Slice

Tue., Sept. 10, 2013, 5:30 a.m.

Move it on over or sit your ground?

I have not been to many movies in recent years where the theater was packed.

But long ago and far away, I encountered that with some regularity. And at one particular multiplex, there was a related practice that irked me.

When it became clear that the screening was going to be a virtual sellout, theater employees would march down the aisles and instruct people already sitting down to move to empty seats in the middle of their row. That way, latecomers could simply plop down at the end of the row.

Well, for several reasons, I happen to like sitting at the end of a row. I regard the opportunity to select such a seat as a reward for having arrived on time.

So I did not comply with the orders to move in. I would cordially invite people to step past me and take those unoccupied seats in the center of the row.

Naturally, this sometimes created situations in which I was deemed to be the problem -- not the laggards who arrived just as the lights were being dimmed.

No matter. I stayed put. First come, first served. 

Yes, I am aware of the biblical lesson (Matthew 20: 1-16) about the late-arriving vineyard workers being paid for a full day. But we're not talking about the path to God's grace here. We're talking about moviegoers getting their asses to the show on time.

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The Slice

The online home for Paul Turner's musings and interactions with disciples of The Slice.