Tuesday, August 31, 2004


The room is dark and four people enter the screening in the middle of the movie. Nothing too extraordinary. Probably "movie-hoping" in the cineplex. The movie is a slow and bitter-sweet description of married life, parenthood, adultery, friendship. Sometimes sarcastic but never funny to the point of laughter. Which is why the attitude of the people who just came in is so disconcerting. They're laughing out loud without any break. Laughing and talking. After a while, someone stands up and go looking for someone outside. The woman comes in and asks the late-comers to be quiet. They obey for a while but the laughing and talking resume and soon enough I found myself shouting at them "Would you please shut up?" Someone behind me says "Yeah! Right!" They go quiet for another while.
Luckily the movie is over within ten minutes of my angry outburst. The lights go on. The four people are exiting the movie theater slowly. Two adults and two adolescents. I am just in front of them The woman moves more slowly and by the time I am out, only the husband is behind me. The kids are nowhere to be seen. I turned around and in a desire to make the point again, I ask him "Was it you first time in a movie theater?" The man is taken aback and says no. I smile when I say. "I'm sorry but I thought it was the first time and you were not aware of the rules. You see, the etiquette of movie going is that no one speaks during the film. It was obvious that you didn't know so I thought it was your first time at a movie theater". I turn around and leave. I can hear the woman coming to him and asking him what happened. I can hear her indignation at the insult I just delivered with a smile. I can hear his while I am walking away.

I am in the street now and walking toward the bus stop. I can see the four about 20 meters behind me pointing at me. This is when I decide to wait for them. I stop to talk to a garage attendant, just enough time to give the man the time to catch up with me. This time he is furious and is shouting "You gave me no respect, fuck you. No respect. Why didn't you gave me no respect? Hey! fucking bitch!" I let him vent some more and tell him "Good evening to you too, sir" before bursting into a forced laugh and resuming my walk toward the bus stop. The four are now all following me. I hurry my steps a bit worried about any other confrontation with the complete family when the bus pulls in front of me. I run and get in. A man is asking the bus driver for directions. I keep looking back at them coming up. Finally the bus starts and pulls away. I feel I have just escaped a major beating. I am safe.


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