Saturday, September 10, 2011

a night at the opera

actually it was an evening at the drive-ins but i couldn't help but make a reference to the great old marx bros. movie. the place was packed. the local drive-in theater has six screens and is called, natch, the sac 6. i've been seeing flicks at the sac 6 for as long as i remember. that was in another century. now it is a new century. b. picked me up in his prius. we stopped at the local jimboys to pick up some tacos and burritos. b. also made a quick stop at the store before he collected me to get a couple bags of chips and drinks. thus we were well fortified for the night out. the sac 6 earlier this new millennium was near death. the place was crumbling. the bathrooms were shot. the snack bar was unspeakable. you took your life in your hands if you bought food there at the snack bar. a few years ago, in the midst of the drive-in's decrepitude, i was walking around the snack bar area. the snack bar is in a building constructed in a circle like the hub of a wheel while the spokes are the six screens. i was walking outside this circle looking in and saw a girl digging into a large open container of relish for her hot dog. she must've seen my look of horror. why on earth would any eat from any open container in that joint?! the girl returned my look with one that spoke, who is this crazy old man?! now the sac 6 is cleaned up considerably. the bathrooms are clean and the food at the snack bar appears edible. i say appears because i've still not worked up enough nerve to eat there. no matter as the place usually has a long line and is filled with the latest video games. it was a lovely if very warm evening. we watched a flick called warrior [2011], a mixed martial arts rocky styled flick of no plot and too little action. doesn't matter as we were more in to the ambiance of the place. a car parked in front of us half way into the pic. out spilled a mother, father and three very small tykes. they took off soon as they stopped their car to the snack bar. they returned a few minutes later with the children each carrying a lighted sword, a toy they sell at the snack bar, and these kids spent the reminder of the run-time of the movie chasing each other with their swords. these children were more entertaining then the movie which we couldn't hear very well anyway. again, no matter. i couldn't think of any other place to be on a night like tonight. as faulkner said, the past is not past because it hasn't even passed. looking out to the others sitting beneath the one or two stars twinkling in our city sky i could easily think it was the 1970s. but then a different twinkling broke that spell. because all around us were the lights from phones as every one, and their mothers, texted to who knows about god knows what.


At 8:07 PM, Blogger Jim K. said...

wow, you could do a big graphic
novel on that one night..
all the decay and distraction.

seems the desperation for relish
was akin to the texting despperation

At 9:27 PM, Blogger richard lopez said...

maybe. i have thought of a suite or series of texts with the central motif being the lone projectionist at the drive-ins.

don't know if there was any desperation in the girl's hunger to coat her dog with pickled veggies. not sure if there's any desperation in the need to text, all the time, either. but it seems there is a need to do it all the time and it seems that texting becomes an addiction. so it may very well be desperate for the addict to constantly text. that addiction eludes and puzzles me.


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