My year selling nachos

Tom Huddleston spent one glorious year selling snacks at a cinema in Hammersmith. He recalls the experience…

Selling food in a cinema is mostly as depressing as you might imagine. My abiding memories of a year working at the old UCI cinema in Hammersmith are the smell of mouldy carpets and floor polish, the itch of popcorn dust in the nasal passages and watching the middle 45 minutes of ‘Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon’ about 87 times. But as McJobs go, it’s not so bad: you can watch free movies, albeit in bits, and you get to sit down a lot.

Plus you’ll have a chance to expand your palate far beyond the narrow parameters of normal experience. So if you’ve ever wondered what a Malteser dipped in nacho cheese tastes like, or pondered the effect of pick ’n’ mixing jalapeño peppers and toffee popcorn, or imagined a blend of Coke, Fanta, lemonade, Dr Pepper and coffee, just ask any one of the silent army of surly youths who man our cinemas. I’m serious. What else is there to do once the movie starts? Sure, you could clean the counters, grease-spray the hot dog sausages or rinse out the soft-drink nozzles – especially if the manager is looking. But food-combo Olympics are so much more fun. Now where did I put my Coke-syrup and jalapeño hotdog?

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