Let's be honest - it wasn't Cars. Which means it was never gonna' meet Mr. Pie's expectations for Utter Cinematic Perfection. But I was hoping the Cool Echo Ceiling Dome Thingie offered by The Grande, crowds of happy children, and That Very Enormous Screen Down There would be enough to distract His Highness from the sad reality that we could not, in fact, see His Favorite Movie In The History Of Ever on the big screen.
As per usual, he charmed the ticket seller who thrilled me by declaring the baby's ticket was free. Then Mr. Pie nonchalontly handed our one ticket to the next dude, as if to suggest "I do this all the time."
While getting ready to see what "Medee" was so excited about, he insisted on wearing his new far-too-big hoodie bearing the likeness of Lightening McQueen he thinks is MACK!!!! (no doubt because of the scene in Cars when the two become separated and Our Favorite Animated Race Car speeds down the dark highway calling for his friend - a very big truck.)
If Auntie were as cool as she'd thought she was, she might have researched enough to discover that Alvin and the Chipmunks - among the most predictable little feats of cinematic production I've ever seen - was, in fact, not animated at all. Made me nervous at first; what baby do you know who can sit through a movie with people talking? The antics of the chipmunks, however, and all that danceable music turned out to have the desired effect on my date.
Sitting in my lap most of the time, occasionally he patted a chair beside me and said, "Sit!" so I'd put him down into the seat that invariably folded up on him and his eyes grew huge and he'd reach for me, "No!" and I'd hold him again.
My fine nephew sat there like the big boy he is becoming, and watched the screen with mostly rapt silence. I noticed in the commercial bits leading up to our feature film he jumped a little with the sudden noise of this or that robot's entrance. Because he's not two yet (although he now knows to answer the question "How old are you?" with a delighted, "Two!" and later we'll teach him to hold his fingers in that complicated way adults manage with such ease,) he's still learning the concept of "using our inside voices" and occasionally he'd call out one of the declarations from his growing vocabulary. 'Course I figure it's a movie about rodents and the target audience stands as high as my waist; they probably didn't mind.
We had one tiny meltdown when he started dropping snacks on the floor (he loves to pinch goldfish crackers like bubble wrap!) and I took the bag away from him and he started crying like I'd said something really, really mean to him. So I carried him out for the 30 seconds it took for him to gather himself, so his broken-hearted, Almost Naptime sobs wouldn't disturb the others. Then we returned and he sat on my lap, leaning his head with it's recently shorn curls that make him look not like a baby at all, back into my chest, his hands on both armrests, occasionally giggling.
It was the end of our excursion when he cast off his "Ain't no big deal," attitude and got most excited. We'd waited 'til everyone else left because I'm a dork and wanted to take his picture sitting in the theatre (somebody taught this child to say "cheese" in the last week and it wasn't me) so when it came time to walk back down that long hallway, it was empty so he could really explore. And he did, running away from me, then up to each movie poster on the wall, occasionally declaring "Da Da!" when the character was a tall, dark-haired male.
He laughed all the way back to the car, and chilled on the way home. After which he took a 2 hour nap.
And that, my dearies, is how I spent a large chunk of my Saturday. Which was very, very cool indeed.