on July 14, 2000
The Bryant Park movie series has become an institution in Manhattan. The movies, sponsored by HBO, kick off at dusk or 9pm but you'd best get there by 6 because the massive lawn gets covered with bodies with nary an inch to spare. However, if you are lucky enough to get prime lawn space, you and your friends can open up your picnic dinner, or slice of pizza from Ray's and enjoy the lovely night. Now, before the film begins there are many rituals to the Monday night movies. 1)Bugs Bunny. That's right, every Monday you are treated to Merry Melodies in all its cartoon glory. 2) The HBO dance. The theme music that we all associate with HBO as a child, where the camera scans a model of homes has become a dance. When the music begins you crouch down and as it builds you start to jump in the air until the crescendo when you let it all hang out and dance around like a lunatic. It is one of the funniest and most fun things you'll ever see/do. Then you settle in and watch a movie, absorbing the laughter of the largest movie theater you will ever attend.
Suggestion - arrive early and leave early. If you or someone in your group can not get there by 6, make plans for another week. Try to leave right when the movie ends, especially if you plan to take the subway or a cab because thousands of people have the same idea and it will take you a year and a day to get home. Try not to drink anything if you have a small bladder, women especially, as the bathroom lines are long and the conditions what you would expect from a public park's facilties. If it has rained at all in the past few days bring large plastic sheets, available at any hardware store or garbage bags to line under your blanket. Otherwise you will have wet bums. It is not fun to be wet for 5 hours - trust me.
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