So print these out. Study them. Practice hopping from one room of your house to another, without being noticed. Then when you are ready…brave the multiplex.
1. Be Inconspicuous
This rule involves quite a bit of work and a little bit of pre-planning. The key to successful movie-hopping is to go unnoticed as you are going from one theater to the next. So do your best not to stand out. Don’t wear t-shirts that have funny phrases on them or anything too unique. Someone working there may notice the shirt and take even a slight mental note of it. Then when they notice it again 4 hours later they will stop and think, “Didn’t I already see that shirt today?” Bad. Do not make the movie workers think. They do not like this and are unaccustomed to it. And they will throw you out as a result.
Also, if you are a woman and have boobs, don’t wear a tight shirt or a cleavage shirt. The male workers will definitely notice it/them. Nothing ruins a good undercover op like big boobs and teenage movie workers.
Finally, in order to assist your incognito efforts I recommend bringing a jacket, maybe a hat. Then switch the combos up during the day – sometimes wear the jacket, sometimes wear the hat, sometimes wear both – but always wear something. Please.
2. No Eye Contact
A fellow movie-hopper commented on my last blog with this rule. And I too feel that it is very important. Just like anywhere in life eye contact can lead to bad things – like conversation and general politeness. These things are as unnecessary in a movie theater as they are in the real world.
The key to this rule is to not avoid the eye contact by looking like a scared puppy. Don’t hunch your back and look at the ground, because then someone is sure to talk to you. If for no other reason that to point out that you are about to run into a wall.
I have several ways to avoid eye contact. First, I am looking up at the movie names above the theater doors – I’m searching, I’m looking, I’m not making eye contact, oh I found my theater, and now I’m inside the theater. Secondly, I talk to an imaginary friend on the cell phone. We are having a very serious conversation and/or the phone is breaking up, I can’t hear you, I’m going to have to call you back, I’ve just walked into the theater. Thirdly is the standby - I search through the purse for something, anything, I’m looking, I’m searching, I’m in the theater. No unnecessary conversations had.
3. Do Not Hesitate
Movie hopping needs to be a well-oiled machine. And as with all well-oiled machines, hesitation is not an option. Hesitation is more of a moderately-oiled machine trait. When hopping one must never falter. To falter is to diiiiiiiiieeeeeeeee. Or it is to go home without a fully numbed ass. Which is the movie-hopping equivalent of death.
So even if you are not by nature a confident person, it’s time to test out those acting skills. Throw those shoulders back, lift your chin up high and walk the halls like a person who is running slightly late for their show and cannot be bothered with such pointless things like eye-contact or pleasantries. I know you feel guilty, I know you feel wrong, I know your mother thinks you are committing a sin equal to animal torture. But your exterior must portray none of this. Be strong my soldiers. AND. JUST. KEEP. WALKING.
4. Go to the bathroom or visit concessions between movies.
This is a good time filler and a good way to avoid being seen literally walking out of one movie door and into another movie door. Plus the bathroom stall is a great place to change your outfit and check to make sure you’re on schedule. It’s kinda like Superman’s phone booth. Only with automatic flushers.
5. Always start with the new release/blockbuster.
A movie hopper is instantly eliminated from the game if someone is checking tickets in front of your forth movie. You will usually find this horrible sight only on the weekends and only for the new releases or a HUGE blockbuster or an NC17 movie. At least that’s what I’ve heard.
So it is best to plan to see the ticket-checking movie first so that you actually have a valid ticket to show.
“But what do I do if I want to see two new releases or HUGE blockbusters or NC17 movies?” You ask, because you are a sucker for nudity and graphic violence.
To that I say, “Never fear, there are exceptions to every rule… (except the one that insisted you keep your clothes on.)”
6. Go in a little late.
If you are worried about being caught going into a movie wait a little while and go in after the previews have started. Once the theater has gone dark the movie workers close the door and go back to seeing how much free popcorn they can eat. And then you slip in ever so slyly.
Because you are a confident, experienced (yet stealth-like) movie-hopper. Butter, instead of blood, pumps through your veins.
So go students! Go! Embrace the world inside the movie theater! It is an exciting world full of challenges and dreams! Maybe one day I’ll run into one of you as we are both hopping. But of course, we’d literally have to RUN IN to each other, because neither one of us will be making eye contact with anyone.