One thing you simply won’t find as much of in Europe is the beloved American concept of ‘all-you-can-eat’. Chinese food buffet, Friday night fish fry, greasy spoon breakfast. Unlimited drink refills are taken for granted. While I don’t particularly miss these smorgasbord opportunities, due to both culinary quality and gastrointestinal limitations, my bottomless pit of a husband occasionally craves an endless plate of _______ (fill in the blank).
There is, however, one over-eating promotion that gets me every time. At our local movie theater Tuesday nights are known as ‘BYOB’, meaning Bring Your Own BUCKET. Bring that bucket and crabby teenager at concessions will fill it with popcorn for 50 cents. One half of one dollar. And that bucket can be as big or small as you want. You see people with mixing bowls, beach buckets, drywall buckets. Butter, no butter, various flavored seasoning salts. I love popcorn. A lot. And since I lived the past 9 months sans microwave (and my two attempts at stove-top popcorn failed miserably) I am way behind on my popcorn intake quota.
So last night, my nuclear family loaded into the car and headed to BYOB night at the movies. We each had our own bucket (but please don’t confuse the other buckets to my dad’s special bucket, or he’ll bite you) filled to the brim with piping hot popcorn. We made a scene as we shuffled into our seats, reconfigured, and finally sat down. We laughed more boisterously than the other 10 people in the theater, and my parents loudly asked ‘Who is that actor?’ or ‘Who sings this song?’ more than twice. My dad took the tile of ‘Popcorn Glutton of the Night’ by emptying his very special bucket before the movie was even at it’s climax. My sister and I took our leftovers home, hoping that day old popcorn is as good as day old pizza or day old mac and cheese. Turns out those hopes were baseless.