A Shabbos afternoon tale

On my Shabbos afternoon stroll with The Beasts, earlier, I popped into the Dizengoff Center to discover what films its Lev Cinema would be serving up this evening.

And having asked a friend, Sylvie, whether she would like to see Inception before it comes off general release – but not having received a definite reply – I enquire of the girl at the VIP Club desk whether, as a member, if I book two tickets, I can get my money back on one if I cancel ahead of the screening.

“Why would you want two tickets?” comes the knee-jerk response.

Following several seconds of the eyebrows raised, lips clenched, wide-eyed gaze – communicating an unambiguous “That’s a f*cking stupid question, isn’t it?” – which I have rehearsed and perfected specifically for occasions (and nincompoops) such as this, the penny finally drops: “Oh, you mean somebody might be coming with you?”

Though really wanting to reply, “No, I always like to keep a seat free for Elijah,” I – said gaze unaltered, to drive home my message – nod.

“Don’t worry,” says the girl, “I am here this evening, too.”

As if that would be of comfort.

The Israeli consumer industry seems to specialise in dimwitted young females – Frozen Yogurt Girl and Post Office Nasty are just two who spring to mind – though there is something quintessentially Jewish, of course, about (not) answering one question with another.

(And, yes, I love writing little blogs about nothing . . . )


17 responses to “A Shabbos afternoon tale

  1. yes we little dumb ones have our own nice and effective way at getting back at certain customers …

    it seems that Israelis are refreshingly effective at it

    thanks for telling, I normally hear it only from Germans which makes me wonder why it practically never happens to me 😉

  2. We saw Inception in New York City in July, it’s a film that is definitely worth seeing, on your own, with a special date and/or with others for the first, second or even third time (hint, hint!).

  3. maybe she fancied you?

  4. Your entertainment commenced well before the planned ‘feature movie’ started .. “that’s added value”

  5. Maybe her ‘don’t worry, I am here all evening’ was a hint you were supposed to pick up on that she would be happy to occupy the 2nd seat??

  6. i rest my case

  7. I agree with EWG – she was hinting that you didnt need the second seat. come back to the UK we have lots of tards here 🙂

  8. who’s f*cking stupid now? not she, she hit on you and it went right over your head
    maybe all the israelis you ever thought were rude, were actually passive (or not passive) aggressively coming on to you
    probably not, actually

  9. I must be “f*cking stupid” – thank you, dude! – because I didn’t understand 95% of that film. And what worries me even more is that Steve Davis, a mere naartherner, appears to have done!

  10. well, you missed my point? i only implied you were the f*cking stupid one order to perpetuate your choice of words, possibly from the ticket girls perspective.
    more importantly, what was she like?

  11. richardmillett

    Mike, save 2 hours of your life and don’t see Inception! It is dreadful. Oh you saw it already. Bad luck. At least Leeds are back on form.

  12. But it’s all become crystal clear to me now, Rich! If you want to understand the film, too, follow this simple guide . . .


    Thank God for footie! 😉

  13. Mike, you must purchase Al Jafee’s (Mad Magazine) “Snappy Answers to Stupid Questions”, a gem which serves me nicely in dealing with annoying and stupid CUSTOMER enquiries.
    The other day a person called asking my store hours.
    “Nine to 7” I answered.
    “Seven PM?”
    “No, 7am; I work around the clock, from 9am to 7am, then take a 2 hour nap before reopening”.
    “Thank you”, was his response.

    Another common question is “How much do you buy books for?”
    I used to explain that it depends on the book, etc, but now I snap back with anywhere between YOU having to pay ME
    to take your books to 10,000 dollars for an early Shakespeare (or whatever).
    Another good example is “what is this, a bookstore?”
    “No, it is a vegetable stand….(butcher shop, fish store, etc)”

  14. Thanks, Yosef (who is this guy, by the way). I recall fondly your riposte to a customer – a fellow Yank – when he said that he could get a particular book for cheaper on the Internet . .

    “So, what is stopping you?!”

    And you and I have been friends ever since. 😉

  15. If someone, who is attractive to me, asks me a stupid question, I ask her name and life story back, pretend I’m interested and u k ow the rest…
    If someone unattractive to me (or male) asks me a stupid question, I deadpan answer it directly, normally resulting in stupido realizing with much greater affect the silliness of it all.
    I guess I just think stupid answer to stupid question is worse then stupid question.
    For example: does your dog bite? Yes, it’s off liquids since a pup.
    Is this a book store? No we sell hopes, dreams and reality in word form.

  16. I drove past your building today (work) and note that there’s a cinema right next door, why don’t you just skive off work one day and go?

  17. And how do I explain my absence to my boss? Just tell him that I fancied a matinée?! Old age (and marriage?) are making you (even) stranger, Steven . . .

    Anyway, if we should be compelled to utilise our local services, I am told that your nearest “high street,” Allenby, has a thriving trade in Russian ladies . . .

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