Proper Etiquette In Theaters.

Omg, this is the best question EVER submitted via Ask the Darcy:

I once saw a question that stumped Dear Abby so I’m going to ask you because your answer is bound to be so much more interesting. If a man has to pass by a woman seated in a movie theater but it’s a tight squeeze, should he pass facing towards her or away from her. In other words, which is the least worse way of passing politely – crotch or rear end view?

That is just fantastic!  And it actually goes either way, if a woman passed a man, it is kind of the same issue.

And of course I have the absolute correct answer.  Regardless of who is doing the passing, the person sitting should stand up and scootch themselves back far enough so that a) you aren’t face to ass with someone;  b) you aren’t face to…not ass…with someone and c) you don’t have to worry about kicking knees by accident and stuff.  Then from there, the person passing can go whichever way they want because they will awkwardly be scooting as fast as they can and they won’t have to worry about which part of their body is in someone’s face.

The fault here is not with the scooting person, it is with the sitting person.  If you stay seated while someone is trying to get past you, you are a jerk.  You know your freaking knees come within an inch of the seat in front of you, how do you think anyone is going to get past that?  They aren’t, and by just sitting there you are saying “I’m a jerk and I want to make this as difficult for you as possible”.

It is possible that when this question was posed to Dear Abby, seats did not flip up in movie theaters (or even theater theaters) like they do now, which would make standing and scooting back a little difficult.  But you still do it!  That way the passing person is only potentially coming into contact with your knees and possibly part of your thighs, because you are bent backwards trying to avoid all physical contact with them.

While the sitter is bent backwards, it is the responsibility of the scooter to lean backwards in the opposite direction, towards the row in front of him/her.  This means it is the responsibility of the next row down to lean forward.

Now which way to face?  If you face towards the sitter, that means your ass is brushing up against the backs of the heads of the people in the row in front of you.  If you choose to face your ass to the sitter, depending on your height, your stomach and/or…not ass…are brushing up against the backs of the heads in front of you.  Again, if the row in front of you is doing their civic duty, they are leaning forward, so this is not an issue.  It is a group effort.

I have enlisted some friends to help demonstrate.

First, we have Katniss, who really wants to get to her seat next to Big Koala.  MooseMoose and Bellagio Bear are in the row in front.  Also, Katniss has a weapon and no one is following protocol to deal with that, but you know, they are stuffed animals so we can forgive them.  DaveMoose watches on as the events unfold.


MooseMoose, Bellagio Bear, Big Koala and Katniss (with DaveMoose watching) now demonstrate the proper procedure.


See how easily Katniss can scootch to her seat next to Big Koala without having to deploy her weapon?

Now look what happens when MooseMoose, Bellagio Bear and Big Koala did not cooperate (with DaveMoose watching).


IMG_5329Katniss went batshit and went all Hunger Games on MooseMoose, Bellagio Bear and Big Koala (while DaveMoose watched) and turned them into helpless tributes and littered the arena with her bows.  Look at that sassy look of triumph on Katniss’s face.

Let’s avoid turning future theatrical or movie events into a Hunger Games fight to the death.  Stand up, lean and follow proper procedure.

Ask the Darcy!

No animals were harmed in the creation of this demonstration.

4 thoughts on “Proper Etiquette In Theaters.

  1. For real? He’s got a special history, but maybe I can ask the person who got him for me and see if he’s available online or something!

  2. Pingback: Theater Etiquette Part II. - My Food is Problematic

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