Frankly, Rando Stranger, I Don’t Give a Damn

Friday, October 21, 2011

Frankly, Rando Stranger, I Don’t Give A Damn

Earlier this week, I went out to eat with my sister and her boyfriend (third-wheeling much?). We went to the most popular breakfast restaurant in town on a Sunday morning during Homecoming weekend. Admittedly, not the smartest idea. However, the food at this place is more than worth the wait, and they were doing a great job of getting people seated quickly, so we weren’t worried about it. After about 20 minutes of waiting, though, we were starting to feel impatient. Not angy impatient. More like excited impatient.
“Is it our turn? Maybe? Maybe? Oh. No. Ok maybe the next one.”

Two or three more parties get seated, and we’re doing the I’m Hungry For Bacon Dance.

“Kristin? Is Kristin’s party available?”

Note: None of us are named Kristin.

My sister mumbles under her breath, “I could be Kristin. How many people does Kristin have with her? We could just take her table.”

A random lady (not Kristin) comes rushing by us to put her name on the seating list and says in her best I’m-40-so-I’m-going-to-use-Valley-Girl-speech-because-that’s-what-you-arrogant-young-kids-respond-to-plus-I-secretly-think-it-makes-me-sound-cooler voice, “Uhhh YEAH, haven’t you seen DATE Night?”

Uhh NOOO, I haven’t, actually. Thanks for asking.

Yeah, there’s a scene in that Tina Fey and Steve Carrell movie where they take another couple’s reservation at a restaurant. I get it. But you’re a stranger. As Jess from The New Girl says, “Stranger Danger is real.” And also your movie tastes have no bearing on my life.

So it got me to thinking. I would like to create a council which determines the appropriate usage of movie quotes/references in everyday conversation. The Council On Movie Quotes. COMQ. Yes.

I’m not talking about the movies you quote with your friends. You all know I can bust out a perfectly timed Finding Nemo quote. With my friends, it’s always The Hangover or Madagascar. (Strange combination, I know.) At home, it’s usually My Big Fat Greek Wedding. And whenever I hear the words “in the shower” I think of Legally Blonde. But those are private instances. Inside jokes. Not cultural icons. If a newcomer were to join our group of friends and not know the exact reference we were making, yes, we’d mock them first, and then kindly and repeatedly remind them of how inept they are. Then we’d teach them the quote and move on with our lives.

And then there are the quotes which cross friendship barriers. The classics. The ones that some people don’t even know the movie they’re from, they just know that the phrase is perfect, and if they know that, we accept them.

“Here’s lookin’ at you, kid.” If a guy said that to me, I’d probably burst into tears. It would be that good.

“No one puts Baby in a corner.” That’s right!! No one!!! And I’m Baby! Except without the oddly crooked nose that she later fixed!! Rest in peace, Patrick Swayze! We love you! All exclamation points!

Just about every line from Top Gun. Seriously, that movie is just one rolling sound clip. Plus the score is phenomenal. And I mean incredibly sensual and awkward, mixed in with “Dangerzone.” Amazing.

And who can forget a little “Hakuna Matata?” No one, that’s who.

I realize that I’m rather fond of making lists on my blog, and that in fact, lists are not my forte. But c’mon. Can you tarnish the names of these cinematic treasures by lumping them in with the duds? (Plus nothing else exciting happened to me this week. My transmission blew. Awesome. So this is all I have to work with…)

Now, I’ll give Tina Fey and Steve Carrell their due, because they are amazing. Mean Girls is slowly creeping up to be a universally accepted quotable movie, especially in reference to Toaster Strudel. And “That’s what she said?” It’s going to be here for a long time. But Date Night? I, as the first President of the COMQ, declare that it is not prepared for “Classic” status to be drawn into conversation with strangers.

So what do you think? Any movies that should or should not be included on the list? Or awkward instances when a movie was referenced but it missed the mark?

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