According to a thirty second google search, people have a lot of different fears.
<— Here is a handy graph. However, I am not afraid of any of these normal fears. Because I love people and I love attention and parties and food, so….my fears are just different.
I’ve written about some of my own weird phobias, like horses and fish (laugh at me by clicking this link), and when I created my bucket list (just a few short months left to complete my thirtyx30! Who will sacrifice themselves and go to the remaining 13 wineries or breweries with me?! :) ) I think I realized one of my fears, at least, at the time, was being alone. And so I wanted to challenge myself to go to dinner alone and to a movie alone.
A few months ago, I managed the dinner alone. The first time was in London. Then in New York. And then I realized I loved it. More recently, on my beach trip, where I found the magical mailbox. I went to a Thai restaurant attached to my hotel, was the only person there, drank too much wine and ate an appetizer, dinner, AND dessert by myself, while journaling about nothing. Then I walked back to my room and starfished on the queen bed by myself and felt glorious. And slightly ill.
But the movie alone kindsof scared me. My friend Seghs told me about one time, she went to a theater by herself, and a man came and sat next to her and asked her if she was Shelly, like he was supposed to meet her for God knows what in the theater.
But I had the day off today, and no friends, and wasn’t about to pay full priced for a movie ticket, so I decided on the 12:55 showing of Hunger Games. I gave myself the following pep talk in my car:
I don’t know what I thought I could do with the Bible as a weapon of defense. “The power of Christ compels you to not roofie my popcorn!” Maybe. Or Mandy Moore a la “Saved,” one of the most under appreciated movies ever.
So I bought my ticket, and no one asked why just one ticket. Nice. I went to the candy counter, thinking I deserved some chocolates to help me get through the ordeal, and walked away with like $15 in popcorn, candy, and soda I didn’t need. Five minutes later, God struck the popcorn out of my hand in agreement that I didn’t need it, but not until after I had already chomped down all the good buttery stuff. Did you know you can butter your own popcorn now?! AMAZING. And there are like flavored salts?! This modernized world. Too much.
I walked into the theater, and there was a couple already making out, but towards the back, and they were the only ones in there. “Sweet,” I thought. I took my favorite spot – right in the middle, towards the front, where you can use the railing as a footrest.
I was chomping popcorn (until God smacked it away), and thinking that popcorn should really come with floss. I was chewing the Milkduds, and thinking I was going to extract a filling on accident. I was washing this all down with Diet Coke, you know, to watch my calories. I was super excited. I was going to survive this.
Right as the previews come on, a middle-aged man walks in, alone, and sits himself down three seats away from me.
Are you for REALS, bro?! There are hella seats in this theater! Go! Sit in one! Away from me!
But he did not. AND, at two different points during the film, I saw the flash on his camera go off. So I wrote a description of him in my phone as a text to myself, in case he whipped out his junk and I had to report him.
What he was taking pictures of, I am not sure, as I was too tense between watching the film and having to pee. The thing about going to the movies alone is that there is no one to tell you what you missed when you leave to pee, and so you can’t pee. Adult diapers, next time, perhaps.
In the endI was not propositioned for sex, like my poor friend was. And the movie was BRILLIANT and I would totally go again. The worst thing that happened was how upset I got over paying $8.25 for a matinee, when it used to be $4 in my day. I briefly considered making it more worth my while by hiding in the bathroom until the next showing of “Philomena” was on, because my actress crushes Judi Dench and Michelle Fairley are in it..alas, I had Crossfit, so I left in a very mature huff.
And that’s my story! Thanks for all the Facebook support about going to a movie alone, by the way. I was also deeply touched by the encouragement provided by my Facebook community during the “broken wine opener” debacle of last night. You are truly true friends.