Sunday, 6 June 2010

The Projectionist's Apprentice

A death match has been instigated in my place of work. Two people pitted against each other in a battle of wills, skills, thrills and spills. It's like Thunderdome up in here. Two men enter. One man leaves.

Due to the upsetting departure of one of our team , we had to advertise for a replacement. It ended up that the only people to make it past the interview stage where two chaps who already work at the cinema: our "Ghost" projectionist (meaning "part-time") and a lad who jockeys pop-corn downstairs.

In an arguably bizarre and sadistic managerial decision, my boss, The Man Who Knows, chose to split the available hours between the two of them for a training period and then see who is right, and who is dead.

Well, not dead, but whoever doesn't get the full-time position will be cast back downstairs to live among the cash-jugglers, broom-drivers and ticket-rippers which, after you've had a taste of the solitude of projection, is akin to being booted out of heaven into a really noisy and annoying hell. A fate worse than death.

This is all funny enough, but the worst part of it, for me (and what else matters?) is that I have to do some training. Training bothers me because I always feel like I'm patronising people. "You put this here, yeah? And then move that, right? And then do this, you see?" I just expect them to go: "It's not fucking rocket-science, is it mate?" and stomp me in the throat or summat.

There's also the tragic irony of me being asked to impart wisdom when I pretty much make up what I do as I go along. I can remember a training day when I was taken around the booth, being shown a large number of things which would kill me if I touched them or used them incorrectly. I remember the feeling of impending danger and imminent threat, but can I remember what the threats were? Can I recall where on the platter tower there is a switch or circuit or something just waiting to blast me across the room when I poke it with my ignorant finger? Can I bollocks.

So the combination of learning my bad habits and being made to compete in some macabre, low-rent, shadowy version of "The Apprentice" leaves me feeling a distinct lack of envy for my fellows. May the best man win?

1 comment:

  1. I kind of want to work in a movie theatre.

    Five bucks on whichever one has ironic sideburns.