September 26, 2020

Ten Minutes

posted on: Thursday April 24, 2014

by Jose Martinez ’16
Portfolio Staff

It started about two and a half months ago, probably, with a guy on the street approaching me out of nowhere. I’ve never seen him before, and he didn’t look shady in the slightest. He didn’t attempt to cover himself up or anything. He just told me that on the 10th of May, starting from 12:30 in the afternoon, I had 10 minutes to convince the customers of the Royal Regala Cinema to flee the building. He told me I had 10 minutes, or else “it would happen.”

Ten minutes.

I didn’t think too much on it. In fact, I hadn’t even bothered coming. But I was bored, and I was in the mood to see a movie. No movie in particular; just a random showing of a random movie of my random choosing. And then it hit me, “Right…that nut threatened me with that 10 minute crap.” So I figured that if I had time to kill, I’d “warn” a couple of people who passed by, just for kicks and giggles, no intent of actually caring for their safety; it’d just be for fun.

I arrive, get a ticket for some movie, look at the showtime, and I let the countdown begin.

Minute one, I warn a guy with a cheap-looking but probably expensive fleece jacket. He tells me that that kinda stuff must be real funny and then tells me to knock it the hell off before that kind of crap gets me in real trouble. That reaction was really surprising.

Minute two, I warn a dark-brown-haired and ginger couple of what is to come. The ginger flips me the bird, the brunette tells the other to not bother giving me any attention, I’m just some nut who feeds on attention. At least the brunette was cool about it. I check my watch five seconds before it changes into the next minute. There is no way that figure is going to pull off whatever it is he is trying to pull off.

Minute three, I’m feeling a bit thirsty, so I head up to the concession stand and ask for a bottle of water. Either the couple or the first guy tipped off the nearest employees they could find and word spread quick, because the concession stand girl hands me my water with eyes that could stab, threatening to call security if I “continue this kind of behavior.” Hey, I’m just trying to pass a message along.

Minute four, I completely disregard concession stand girl and warn an old man and what must be his grandson. The grandson is pretty young, and whenever kids that age hear things that sound “bad” or “scary,” they begin to make those preliminary crying sounds that resemble whining. Grandpa tells grandson not to worry, and he gives me the Han Solo finger, telling me I should be ashamed of myself for scaring a kid his age with such nonsense. Well damn…he’s probably going to tell concession stand girl now.

Minute five, the halfway point. Is this guy really going to go through with this? May the Good Lord strike me with lightning if this guy actually does make this happen. Concession stand girl interrupts my thoughts, waving a walkie-talkie in my face, threatening to call security like she promised if I wouldn’t cut this out. I raise my hands as if I was about give myself up for a crime that I never committed. I promise that the old man and his grandson were the absolute last people I would “scare.” She tells me it doesn’t matter, security are coming anyways. I lower one of my hands over where I think my heart is, swearing on my father’s soul that they were the last people. I even tell her that I have to watch this movie, I can’t get kicked out. She relents, heading back to her post, and gives me the “I’m watching you” fingers. I’m shaking.

Minute six, and I’ve passed the halfway point. Imagine if the guy said 10 minutes, but actually meant less than that. Like at this exact moment, “it” happened. The first guy would have been real regretful of the way he talked to me. He would have thought, “Damn, why didn’t I listen to that crazy loon when I could have? Guess he isn’t so crazy now…” If we both live through this, I’ll be the one getting him in real trouble for threatening like that.

Minute seven, and I imagine the kind of status I would get from surviving this. “Hey, guess what? A couple of months ago, the guy who orchestrated this told me that it would happen. And what are the odds that the person he told would survive?” I bet I’d be a hero. Maybe I could win over the brunette from earlier. She’d be all over a fortune teller, wouldn’t she? I bet the ginger would beg me to give her back, even attempting to make it up by setting me up with one of his other hot friends. Not a chance dude. Not after flipping me off.

Minute eight, and I would honestly feel bad for both the grandpa and his grandson. I mean, sure, I’d laugh at them first for not believing me, the grandpa more because laughing at such a cute kid is pretty messed up. But I would definitely feel bad for both of them. The grandpa because he’s got like, what? A couple of years left? He’s old and senile, he doesn’t know any better. And no kid that young and adorable deserves to go through such a thing. If he does, may he be among the first to depart with the Good Lord; surviving it would mess that kid up forever.

Minute nine, and that guy is probably not going to go through with this. I mean, come on. What kind of guy doesn’t cover himself up or at least make a poor attempt at covering himself up? What kind of guy doesn’t attempt to look shady and weird? He wasn’t suspicious at all. Usually the guys that threaten people with this kind of crap are among the weirdest people you’ll ever come across. That’s what separates the criminals from the proper citizens of society; it’s how strange you are. Look at me funny or exhibit some kind of weird behavior, and you better hope I forgot my cell phone at home, because I’m calling the police. The guy who came up to me months ago? He was just a punk, looking to cause trouble. For him, he better hope I run into him again, or some nostrils are going to start bleeding.

Minute 10, the final minute, the moment of truth, and also, what kind of guy waits months for this kind of event to happen? You either want this to happen at the time you tip a random guy off, or like I said previously, you’re looking to cause trouble. That guy was just trying to be funny. He made me look bad, like I was the one trying to cause trouble. Too bad for him that I remembered his face; I hope he likes it in dire need of facial reconstruction surgery.

That was it. I did my best to warn people, I even waited the whole time anticipating it would happen, and all it got me was some prude threatening to call security on me and a bunch of angry feelings. I actually was hoping it would happen, however messed up that sounds, but only because I didn’t actually think the guy would deliver. And I was right. Well, that’s the last time I ever hope something chaotic happens. That guy must have had a girlfriend walk out on him, due to the fact that he can’t keep his promises. What a wuss.

Ten minut–

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