About Me

Hi, my name is Randy Hill and I am just one of thousands of people around the world, tired and frustrated with the lack of consideration that is displayed by a growing "demographic" that I call, "the great unwashed and ill-mannered." People who can't seem to get outside their little world long enough to see the stress that they create on the rest of the population.

I've created this blog and online store as an outlet for this pent-up frustration...and also to have a little devious fun while I'm at it!

Have fun and keep it down while you're in here. Thanks.

[When Randy isn't whining about noisy and rude people, he dreams up designs in his studio at Hill Design Studios. A native Texan, Randy resides in the wilds of the Pacific Northwest with his wife Dawn and four cats]

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Mind Your Movie Manners

By Randy | July 30, 2007

My thanks today goes out to guest writer, Indigo, for sharing the following wisdom with our readers.

Ah, nothing like a rainy Friday to go to the local movie theater and see something funny to help forget the long week. It was a particularly draining week, so perhaps a trip out to see The Simpsons would shake that muck off for the weekend.

I get my popcorn and am one of the first to get in the theater, as I am always early for a movie, even if it means having to memorize the trivia reel. Choosing a seat is very important. I prefer a seat that has a form of guard rail in front of it rather than more seats – usually a walkway in front of the rail. I have to move aside some miscellaneous trash from previous viewers: people just don’t care to throw away their own things. The theater slowly fills up, with a wide variety of kids, some of whom I don’t think The Simpsons is entirely appropriate viewing material. I turn off my phone, settle in, groan through a few obviously bad trailers and then…


Upon the back of my head, I feel a slow, inconsistent rumble against my seat.

I glance back, to see a child somewhere between 6 and 8, propping himself against my seat in his chair. Now the teaser trailers have already begun – and I am waiting to see the Batman Begins teaser that I heard about . I don’t want to miss it while I remind a child of manners while his mother sits next to him, entirely oblivious. So I made a choice to not be rude to everyone around me, and endured. For part of the movie, this was okay, but about 40 minutes in or so, the constant kicking was really having a poor affect on my enjoyment of the movie. As if young kids laughing at jokes they couldn’t possibly understand wasn’t distracting enough, I have a kid kicking the back of my seat like he’s gifted in freestyle swimming.

At one point I turn around hoping to make eye contact. And got nothing. I tried the “evil-eye” method a few times. The mother is not even aware, the child continued kicking, and I couldn’t wait to get the heck out of there. I really don’t know how funny the last half of the movie was because I was fuming in my head each time my chair was nudged. I rued my decision to let the kid be in thpose trailers – I thought it would pass and I didn’t want to disrupt those around me.

Now I must admit, I am not the queen of etiquette here. I don’t refer to the Shakespearean insult generator and I am sure I am not aware of all the ins and outs of etiquette in Five-Star eateries. But I enjoy movies. There are very simple rules when visiting a movie theater, and preventing your child from kicking the seat in front of them is only one of them.

Movie Manners:

1. Seating arrangements. Plan accordingly and get there at least 20 minutes before starting time so that you have ample time to get seated without bothering anyone. If someone was there before you, and the theater is very nearly empty, do not ask them to move to make room for you and your group so that you can utilize that specific row. If you need a row with another seat, there is potentially a whole theater of rows to choose from, don‘t disrupt those that were there early in an attempt to make them relocate from their very strategic location. However, this rule is null and void in a full theater, in that case, expect to lose any elbow-zone seats – those directly beside you – and offer them up without protest. At that point, having attitude about having to sit elbow to elbow with a stranger will get you nowhere. This should be common sense, but lately I have experienced otherwise.

2. Cell phones. Turn them off. Don’t use them as signaling devices when you are split from your group. Don’t take calls, and for the love of God, don’t distract your neighbors with your constant text messaging. You’re here for a movie, an escape, so put down the electronics.

3. Ratings are there for a reason. Do some research before you bring your child with coloring books to that screening of Hostel, Pan’s Labyrinth or 300. Just because they’re too young to understand does not mean it will not effect them. You’re also being inconsiderate of fellow movie goers, as we expect an adult night out when we go to an “R” rated movie. Just because it’s animated does NOT mean it’s for kids. Off topic but fair warning to parents: Be wary of the next few years of Harry Potter movies too – It’s going to change drastically from what we first saw in the series.

4. Watch your kids. If you do take your children to a movie, please pass on etiquette rules to their generation. That would include informing them why they ought not to kick the seat in front of them, talk too loud, or throw things on the floor without picking them up. Also, the movie theater is not a babysitter. Don’t expect to drop off your kids unsupervised and that they will follow the rules. They will sneak in to movies they haven’t paid for, be disrespectful to others, and goodness knows what else. It’s still up to you to keep an eye on them.

5. On your way out: clean up after yourselves! This is very simple. Would you want someone coming in to your home and leaving their crap everywhere? I think not. And why would you want to make attendants clean up after you, or have the next person in line have to deal with your mess later? If you have a soda, throw it away as you leave, as well as any other garbage you might have accumulated while enjoying those movie snacks. It doesn’t all just disappear when you walk out of that theater, have some respect for the facilities so that you can enjoy them again in the future.

It all comes down to being considerate to others. The movies are usually an exciting experience and a great night out for those involved – don’t let anything you do tarnish that for yourself or others. A little bit of consideration will take you a long way, and a little etiquette never hurt anyone’s feelings. So next time you and your family go to the movies – mind your manners.


Topics: Etiquette in Public Places | No Comments »


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