No Longer a Theater Celibate

The first movie I saw at the theaters was Rugrats: In Paris. I was nine years old, a late bloomer to moviegoing simply because my family did not indulge in the activity. My neighbors, on the other hand were avid moviegoers, and decided to take the deprived child next door along with them one evening. I still remember getting my ticket, waiting in line for popcorn—hell even the smell of my first movie-magic popcorn. I remember finally sitting in the dim theater and waiting for the room slowly move into complete darkness. I remember saving, showing, and treasuring the “Rugrats Passport” I received with my ticket. It was my first theater paraphernalia, soon I would add limited edition Pokemon and Digimon cards to that collection, but for now this was all I had and I adored it.

In retrospect, I realize that I blindly followed my neighbors throughout the process that I have now come to know instinctively. I taken for granted my first experience because I engage in the activity so much now. It’s like learning to read—we can recall when we learned how to read, but every time we pick up a book, chances are, we don’t trace the process by which reading became second nature.  In fact, it wasn’t until I read Fuller’s last chapter when I remembered Rugrats: In Paris. The first generation of moviegoers, had to be educated to moviegoing (176); what’s interesting is that once fluent, we forget about the learning process. I am fortunate in that I began so late and therefore still hold the memory of the first time. So now, dig past years of moviegoing, pounds of popcorn, hundreds of ticket stub and ask, “How did I learn moviegoing?”

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