I’ve never been a huge fan of popcorn. I don’t particularly dislike it, and if there’s a bowl or bag of it around, I’ll probably have a handful or two. In general, though, I tend to avoid it. I enjoy the smell, however. That might be some kind of sense-memory thing, transporting me back in time to the magic of the cinema, as perceived by my young self. I’m not sure. Any chance of cultivating a fondness for popcorn might have been lost in my years as a concession clerk, working the popcorn machine and filling up paper bags for a hungry public. The machine required regular refills of a peculiar orange oil, and the popping process created excess orange steam. So, at the end of each shift, I was shiny and orange and I had absolutely no hunger for anything that Mr. Redenbacher would care to offer me.

Strangely, all of the concession folks were given a bonus based on commission. It’s not an industry that you would typically expect to see such an incentive structure, but there you go. Upselling was also something that management would push on us,  and I’m sure you’ve been on the receiving end of “the pitch”. I chose to abandon that strategy, as it was pretty obvious that in the time it would take me to explain the idea to a customer, I could have served another. So, I did very well on the concession list for a while, until management started confusing me with another employee with the same last name and first initial. That was a bit of a bummer.

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