Not-So-Happy Camping in the City

Tonight I came to the realization that if you want to be a happy camper in this city, perhaps you should actually camp out. And no, there is no pitching a tent required. And no, I’m not talking about actually camping.

Okay. Enough analogizing. My brain hurts just thinking about it.

Yesterday I’d received an email from Klout informing me I’d scored a new perk (and you know how I am with my free shit – you don’t? Well check out this post). Two free movie passes to an advance showing of the new movie Don Jon – starring none other than the drool-worthy Joseph Gordon-Levitt. Holy yum, Batman. Jackpot. Count me in with a +1 for the evening.

Seeing this as the perfect opportunity to finally get to know one of my many Grindr/Facebook acquaintances – one who actually interned this summer a block or two from my office and lives within walking distance of my condo hence a nearly-always-within-a-few-thousand-feet-away location (yet we’d somehow never met since our schedules always conflicted, minus that one time we were both on the same train platform at once – hello potential for a missed connections posting on Craigslist) – I shot off a text inviting him along.

RSVP times two: Check.

This afternoon at precisely 3:04pm, I receive the following email:

Congrats on your recent DON JON Perk! We wanted to send you a few important notes about your Perk:

    • You AND one guest are all set for the screening tonight, 9/17, at AMC River East.
    • You must arrive by 7:00pm to secure priority seating. You DO NOT have to wait in line. Please find the Relativity rep and give them your name.
    • Let us know what you think of the movie by using #DonJonPerk!

If you cancelled your RSVP for this movie, please disregard this email. We are still going through cancellations and you will not be penalized for future Perks.

Fast forward to tonight. 45 minutes of a train ride and walk to the theater later, we’re greeted by a line of people with Grumpy Cat-esque looks on their faces. Hmmm. Sucks to be them and be members of the Deeply Unhappy Moviegoers Parade (or DUMP for short).

SIDE NOTE: Look how creative I was just now. That was acting. Thank you.

Anyways…so I go up to the table where the “Relativity rep” is only to find out that there were 80 seats available and that Klout had sent out 300 RSVP emails.

I realize that math has never been my strong point, but that’s a difference of 220 people – not to mention any emails like mine that included a +1 (or more than one…whores).

Now typically if a company screws up in a situation like this, they’ll go out of their way to keep you happy. You’d think in a situation like this – where the people you’re marketing a promotion like this to who have a pretty decent social media following (hence the free perks so you promote the products with free word of mouth/tweet/post advertising) – a company would be like “OMG we screwed up, go see any other movie on us tonight since you’re already here” or something to that effect.

Nope. Nothing. Just a simple “Maybe if you send an email they’ll comp you a free popcorn or put you on a list for a different advanced movie screening.”

You’d also think that the movie theater would step in at this point – especially on a Tuesday night when the theater is otherwise practically dead – and say “Hey, since you’re here we’ll just let you go in and see another movie” since they’d still be taking advantage of the foot traffic and concession sales.

Ha. Ha. Ha. Nope. Wrong again. Why would you do something that’d promote business and additional revenue for you thanks to someone else’s screw up? That’s such a good joke. God, I should go into stand up comedy.

So, needless to say…Don Jon has yet to be seen, and will not be seen until it comes out at a Redbox since I won’t be hiking my unhappy-camper ass back to the theater when I can walk a block to the grocery store and rent it for $1 (or less if I have a promo code that week…perhaps even for free) instead.

However…the trek downtown was not in vain. This long-overdue rendezvous of Grindr/Facebook acquaintances would not end with a failed attempt at seeing a free movie a week and a half before it actually gets released in theaters. Out of tragedy comes triumph (or however that saying goes…perhaps I should have paid more attention in the random required literature courses in college back in the day).

All in all, drinks and conversation flowed…much like the many choice words will tomorrow when I compose an email to Klout expressing my dissatisfaction with their so-called perk. Who knew you had to literally camp out at the movie theater to pick up the tickets for which you’d received an email confirmation, or that “priority seating” no longer means “not stuck in the front row” and instead means “better get here quick to be 1 of the 80 who will actually get to see the movie you’d been offered tickets to see for free.

So on that note, this not-so-happy camper is going to call it a night…and most certainly not on an air mattress…and most definitely not in a tent. No thank you. I’ll stick to my bed…in my bedroom…in my high-rise.

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