Over the holidays we saw a movie at the lovely new Cinemark Theater in Monroeville. One of the announcements before the show stated, “Our world seems to be overrun with technology. There is a time and a place for it, but a movie theater is not the time nor place. LOL and BFF on a bright little screen in a dark movie theater disrupts those around you. You know who you are and so do we! Here at Cinemark, we want our customers to enjoy their movie — free from distractions. Do not be the person we ask to leave the auditorium … because we will. No texting or talking on your cell phones. If you have an emergency — step into the hallway — otherwise it can wait!”
We felt that statement shouldn’t have been necessary to instruct customers how to behave appropriately, but unfortunately from Cinemark’s experience it is. We applaud its decision.
When the movie ended, and the lights were turned on, we quickly noticed the floor was covered with popcorn and popcorn containers. In commending the theater management for the decision to control use of electronic devices, I asked about the possibility of addressing the behavior of carelessly littering the floor with food, wrappers and paper products. The answer I received indicated that the habit of dropping things on the floor was almost impossible to curtail, so hiring enough people to clean the theater between showings seems to be the only real solution.
Quoting from a recently published Post-Gazette op-ed column by Kathleen Parker (“Keep Hope Alive,” Jan. 2), she states, “We have lost all sense of decorum, that voluntary commitment to behavior that combines a willingness to consider others first … enforced through the exercise of self-restraint.” Her opinion subtitle states, “Americans must again resolve to do better and be better.” Enjoying popcorn without littering is an easy, respectful way to start.
WILLIAM and PATRICIA HAUSER