When I was at Lloyd Center mall — in the one of 10 cinemas I don’t go to often, in a seat I’ve never taken before — I realized that the door, right next to me (I was in the back, aisle seat behind the L-shaped door/entrance) wasn’t closing, even though the previews had started. I grew more and more irritated the longer the previews went on, until the opening for the feature started, and then the door closed by itself.
I had no idea it would do this, of course; I expected some dumbass whose job it was to manually close the thing just hadn’t shown up on time, and I’d have to go and complain, if I wanted to get the job done.
What I realized, though, thinking about it later, was this: this is an incredibly neat invention, more semi-mythic than technologically innovative, more haunting in its implications (all those doors quietly closing themselves) and giddily creepy than surprising as an “invention” Regal Cinemas (or whoever they sub-contract) could have come up with — but nobody had told me. I hadn’t read about it anywhere, hadn’t seen mention of this change/leap-forward with any accolades, real or feigned: it had simply passed, made by people who had other and better things to do, into practice — at which point, you’re a naïf for gawking at it with real wonder (“What’s the big deal with that?”) or you’re one of those legitimate bores who are perpetually living out their incompleted childhoods, acting like noticing the smallest thing really is an occasion to pat yourself on the back for it.
I thought, having reached this (set of) conclusion(s): this is how things get wasted.