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“In fact, they tried it out in a movie house in who-cares Kansas. They tested subliminal suggestions and hypnotic demands, overlaid and buried; so that when the movie was over, That’s All Folks!,  the house would forget they saw the movie and therefore, sound reasoning suggested; would, in the near future, purchase another ticket to see the movie they forgot they saw..,”

“A full house of empty heads.”

“Speculation favored this could be used to boost ticket sales and box office numbers; specifically for pre-determined releases chosen by a secret select committee headed by anointed has-beens searching for purpose and..,”

“Let me guess.., it didn’t go as planned.”

“Actually, as programmed; the house, besides jonsin’ for popcorn, did forget they saw the movie..,”

“Really.., I would’ve thought..,”

“.., but - didn’t - forget they bought the tickets. They had evidence; printed stubs and receipts co-signed by a litter of popcorn buckets triggering feelings of anticipation, of dopamine expectation.., serotonin sedation.., only to be denied.”

“Those poor people.”

“So when the movie ended; they - the house with targeted recall - didn’t think the movie had started; and refused to leave their seats. Even when the ten o’clock showing, showed; creating conflict and escalating theatre-threat to threat level, movie-madness-maroon, the color of show-time gridlock. Fights broke out.., buttered-popcorn vomit and bloody noses.., cause if you’re not with us, then.., false choice seeding false prophecy.., and eventually, when the twelve-thirty arrived, they got to watch instead of the anticipated prequel to last year’s sequel; they watched, Live, the Rialto burn to the ground.”

“What the hell does that have to do with anything?”

“Probably nothing..,”

“Be definitive.”

“Nothing.., but then.., maybe..,”

“Hey, I’m from Kansas!”

Peter’s last pitcher had run dry as had his patience for all the noise that had transformed the spirit of inquiry into a material of apathy, and Family Feud would be coming on soon, so was ready to leave when the drunkest of the next table said - slurred;

“I fucking love you.., Let’s hear it again.., This time with satire.”

“O.K.” She agreed.

And this is when Peter shits his pants.