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* THE MOVIELINE SITUATION *

For months you have been receiving wrong numbers: phone calls intended for StarPorte Cinemaís MovieLine. These moronic, mistaken moviegoers ask you which movies are playing, when they are playing, will they show the fire safety public service announcement before the show, how and to what degree exactly will I be punished if I am caught sneaking a bag of ultra-butter microwave popcorn into the theater, and so on. It is indescribably annoying.

Coincidentally, you are an obsessive cineaste, watching at least 2 films per week at your beloved StarPorte. It is expensive. One day, while devotedly sitting through the entire twelve minutes of credits to "The Cutting Edge 4: Toepick Returns" so you could see your friend, Susie Sunday, listed for her work as Backup Grip, you notice the manager standing in back, "accidentally" waving the beam of his flashlight over your face in an attempt to make you leave so the custodial staff can get started cleaning up the smashed kernels of ultra-butter microwave popcorn that are encrusted, barnacle-like, onto the floor. As you blink your light-sensitive eyes in pain, you suddenly have an idea. On your way out, you tell the manager about your wrong number difficulties, and threaten to have them disconnected by the phone company unless they get a new number for their MovieLine, one far less similar to your own.

The manager glances nervously around for stickybeaking patrons or custodians, then pulls you confidentially aside. "Between you and me, we donít actually have a MovieLine. We just list some random poor sapís number in the directory so it seems as if we are providing that much needed and beloved service to the film-going public. Apparently you are that poor sap. However, we donít have enough money to start up a real, functional MovieLine. We would go bankrupt. So, what say we make a deal, you and me? You continue to be the poor sap you are so the film-going public remains under the impression that we are an upstanding and helpful MovieLine-providing theater, and in return weíll let you in for free to as many as three movies a week." Pause. "Iíll give you a moment to consider."

On the one hand, three free movies a week would be great, and maybe then you could save up enough money to start on your Astrophysics/Social Work double major. Then again, getting upwards of a dozen MovieLine wrong numbers a day sure grates on your nerves. Nor do you like the idea of being known as "the poor sap" among the upper echelons of StarPorte Cinema employees...

What do you do?

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