FUQ : Which armrest is yours?

I’m often faced with this ticklish situation amidst an entertaining act in a dark room.

Of course I’m talking about the vexatious decision of picking an armrest in a movie theatre. Is it the left one or the right?

It is completely reasonable for one to trivialise and focus on the bigger picture before them. Who in the world has the time to analyse this insignificant issue amidst all other pressing issues. Since I had unfortunately dared to embark upon watching a movie  alone, I had solid three hours of quality thinking time (which can be pretty serious) while inside a movie theatre to introspect, retrospect and ponder about this insignificant thing among many others, thanks to a movie that I shall not name.

This dramatic dilemma unfolding on the other side of the screen, though subtle, is quite interesting. Even more so, considering this unfortunate glitch in the design – the number of armrests is one more than the number of people, which means there is always one person who enjoys two armrests.This set me wondering about who the lucky soul could be.

The general trend is that people seldomstick to familiar grounds and use the armrest closer to their companions in an attempt to avoid unwanted banter with strangers. This is however not the scenario when the stranger is worth throwing a second glance at. Who knows, innocent nudges and profound apologies might land you a coffee date afterall!( carpe diem)

If there is a lone girl sitting in a row filled with men, the inner feminist in her awakens and demands both the armrests because ‘Naarishakthi!’

Impatient kids, having a tough time keeping mum in their seats would start fighting for that armrest between them knocking down popcorn, creating ruckus in a vigour to emerge victorious in the deadly clash of elbows.

Anyone would be lucky to be seated next to the cozy couple, since they are more than happy to make do with even one seat (considering one can put up with incessant moans and giggles through the entire length of the movie).

Such are the multitude of events that happen in a cinema theatre. You book your ticket and walk into the hall, and to your delight,you are one of the very few people there. What runs in your mind? “Yes! No annoying kids.” “Yes! No having to squeeze my legs to let another person move in.” “Yes! I can stretch my legs on the seat in front of me!” But the least appreciated is the simple luxury of having both the armrests. That of course, is if your luck isn’t crappy. Imagine, there being only three people in the hall including you, and they are both seated on either side of you. Sucks for you eh?

– Nevedita Sankararaman

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