Tag Archives: dollar

Go to the movies to cure cancer

I went to the movies last week, someone gave me a bunch of free movie passes, these were physical tickets, pieces of paper that I had to redeem at the movie theater box office. And so I couldn’t buy my tickets in advance on the phone, I wasn’t even able to use one of those self-service kiosks by the entrance. I actually had to wait on line and interact with a human being.


Which is fine, I guess, it should be fine. All I could think of though was how much easier this could have been had I been able to just walk in and not have to wait on this line. There were all of these other people in front of me, and only one employee actually taking money and printing out tickets. I was curious as to what other people were doing on the line, and so I paid close attention.

They asked for the tickets, handed a credit card, waited while the ticket booth clerk gave it a swipe, and handed them their tickets. I really had to restrain myself from acting out on the urge to get involved. I’d be like, “Guys, why did you wait on this line? There are like eight empty kiosks over there. All you have to do is select your movie and swipe your card. You really feel it necessary to wait on this dumb line? You’re not even going to bother trying to figure out how to do it yourself?”

But you can’t say stuff like that to random strangers. That’s how you get punched in the face. And what am I going to say to the security guard as they escort both of us off premises? “You don’t understand, I was just asking a question, and this doofus punched me!” No, nobody’s interested, now neither one of us gets to see the movie.

But for real, why do you think they only have one person behind that window? Because they’re discouraging you from standing on line. Just use the kiosk. There’s only one person standing there because there are really only a very limited number of reasons as to why you might actually need someone to help process your movie theater transaction. Like my case with the gift tickets. Unfortunately, there’s no option on the touch-screen to scan my passes in.

Do you know how I know that? Because I tried. I at least gave the kiosk a shot. It’s not my fault that I had to wait in line, but I did, and so here I was. What’s everybody else’s excuse? There is no excuse.

And then I finally got up to the window, I got my ticket, and the cashier said to me, “Do you want to donate a dollar for kids with cancer?” and I was just like, “No.” Because I know this game, OK, they do it at the drug store, sometimes they do it at McDonald’s. Let’s guilt you into donating some money. Come on, it’s just a dollar. And it’s for kids with cancer. Pay up.

Don’t think I’m cruel, or that I’m against charity. It’s just that, these movies cost like twenty bucks. Everything about going to the movies is a rip-off. I still enjoy going, and so I’m stuck in the position where I have to pay. But come on, don’t ask me another dollar. Why don’t you give a dollar? Why don’t you donate to charity and leave the fundraising to someone who’s not charging me twelve dollars for a small soda?

It was the same at the concession stand. I bought a small popcorn, that small soda that I was talking about earlier. “Do you want to donate a dollar for kids with cancer?” It’s like, one, how do you know that I didn’t already donate at the ticket booth? I didn’t, but you don’t know that. And two, again, how about you donate a dollar?

And that’s where I had to resist another urge to start a fight with another random stranger. “No,” I said. And the concession lady just looked at me and said, “Really?” Which, I don’t know why she said that, I’m sure I’m not the only person that’s declined to donate before. Maybe it was the blunt way in which I delivered my answer, unashamed, maybe a little annoyed.

But come on, I’m here to watch a movie, not to have some faceless mega-corporation force it’s minimum-wage paid employees to solicit an extra dollar from its customers along every step of the way. I wanted to ask the popcorn girl, “Hey, you, can you give me one dollar? I want to use it to donate a dollar to kids with cancer.” I didn’t, remember that whole me-trying-to-not-get-kicked-out-of-the-theater thing. But I ran through the scenario in my head, I guarantee you I wouldn’t have been given a dollar. And then what, could I have done that whole, “Really?” thing to her? Like, I can’t believe you’re not donating. Don’t you care about kids? Kid with cancer? Come on. Jeez.

Sorry, I can’t eat all of those hotdogs

I want to make it clear that, when I had said months ago that I would eat a hotdog for every person that donated to my race fund, I honestly wasn’t expecting such an outpouring of generosity from my family members, my friends, the friends of friends, it’s really funny how Facebook just kind of decides for you which of your posts will languish in obscurity while others, it’s like everybody sees them, your cousin, you cousin’s roommate’s mom, that mom’s sister, her kids.


Again, to all of those people that freely gave, I’m humbled, I truly appreciate it. But nobody could’ve expected that to go viral, and there’s no way I’m going to be able to eat all of those hotdogs, it’s not physically possible. So everyone, thank you, but it’s not going to happen. And the money’s already gone, the foundation cashed everything in once the race was over.

I get it, it is kind of a let down. If I were in your position, I’d feel cheated too. You saw something on the Internet, a random guy promising to eat a hotdog for every donation, you thought, that’s something I’d like to see, something I’d like my money to help finance. So thanks, and I’m just looking at the list here, Mike B. from Chicago, I really appreciate the two dollars you donated, that was cool of you, but just try to picture those two dollars going to help some poor kids somewhere, some poor, sick kids.

And, you know, I’m not trying to take away from your donation, but how far did you think that two dollars was going to go? I mean, if you’re donating two dollars to charity, and part of that donation comes with a hot dog, it’s not like I’m doubting your intentions. Or, you know what? Maybe I am doubting your intentions. You weren’t in it for the charity at all, were you?

Whenever you make a donation that comes with a gift, it’s never worth it. Like donate one hundred dollars and we’ll give you this charity t-shirt. If it were really about the t-shirt, I could’ve gone online had them screen printed. So stop harassing me about the money, OK? Because I’ve already told you, it’s gone.

And no, I wasn’t totally full of shit, I was planning on eating some hot dogs. Obviously, like I’ve said, I couldn’t have imagined my plea for donations to go viral. You think I chose for this to happen? Come on, in terms of stuff that I’ve put on the Internet, this “hotdog for every donation” campaign ranks probably in the bottom tier of things that I would’ve wished to have gone viral.

Like maybe some of my writing, some of these blog posts, I would’ve picked any one of these to have gotten even a fraction of the attention as my hotdog stunt kicked up. Maybe some publishing house could’ve gotten in touch with me, “Wow Rob, you’re a great writer, here’s a book deal.” But no, I’m stuck here getting threatened with a class-action lawsuit from a bunch of Internet strangers that paid an average of a dollar-thirteen to see another Internet stranger get himself sick from eating too many hotdogs.

Except for that one donor who gave over a grand. I don’t understand your angle, pal. I mean, maybe if I was super, mega rich, this might seem like a really twisted way at buying a laugh. Was it a mistake? Did your credit card get charged and you haven’t figured it out yet? Because even if it was on purpose, my original bet was one hotdog per donation, regardless of how much you donated.

Or maybe you really care about the kids, I have no idea. Look, I ran the race, you guys all donated. Can’t we just leave it at that? Is it really necessary for me to shovel down over four thousand hot dogs? Where would I get four thousand hotdogs anyway? I wouldn’t be logistically capable of cooking them all, serving them, let alone getting them down my throat. Just, I’m going to change my email address, OK? Just, leave me alone, I’m off the Internet for a while, all right?