Bought myself an indulgence on Saturday. I went down to Epicure and purchased a fine bag of tobacco leaf. Two bags, actually. I bought my usual Royal Coachman, a good standard, and then I took a risk on an amusing name: “Bilbo’s Leaf”. As if that wasn’t enough I was also tempted by a jar labeled “Answer 42”.
I kid you not.
But then as I didn’t want my understanding of the Universe to be completely shattered I resisted the urge to smoke the answer to Life, The Universe, and Everything. My head’s already far too big as it is.
As I made my purchase I was distracted by the noise of battle and the unmistakable strains of movie soundtrack. I looked around but couldn’t quite place where it was coming from.
“Am I hearing… movie sounds?” I asked.
Then I thought about it. Epicure is in a basement just two or three doors down from one of Calgary’s art house theaters, and it was mid afternoon.
“Ah,” I said, expounding on my sudden insight, “your shop must be right up against the theater.”
“Nope.” The very young proprietor nodded towards a gleaming sliding door at the back of the shop. It appeared to be made out of stainless steel and had the words “Private” emblazoned just beneath the electric eye glowing red and menacing at it’s top.
I looked back at him.
“Ah.” I said. The shop played host to a large private theater in which a person was alowed to smoke, not something available in public anymore.
As I finished up the purchase the strains of muffled dialog blurred through the wall along with a gentle swell of dramatic music.
“I feel like I should know the film.” I said, trying to place the oddly familiar tone and music.
“Mortal Kombat.” The clerk said, handing me my bag and my receipt.
Some small part of my admiration for the private theater died right then. If you’re going to rent a private space to watch a movie specifically so you and your friends can smoke somewhere larger and presumeably more ornate than your common living room, wouldn’t you want something a little more… classy, to watch?
Like Lord of the Rings, complete with your own pipe of Bilbo’s Leaf.
The geeks, it seems, truly are old enough to be running the show.