Picture the scene, if you will.
You're in a cinema seat, watching the trailers with a bag of popcorn perched on your lap.
As the trailers blitz past the screen, someone edges past you with a tray of nachos, draped in hot cheese and jalapenos, while another person is sitting down with a hot dog swimming in mustard and ketchup. The smell between these two is no doubt overpowering.
Now comes the question, are you bothered by any of that? Some people will speak about how it's violently upsetting to be around anyone eating nachos and hot cheese with jalapenos, while others are unperturbed by it. Likewise, hot dogs with mustard and ketchup are pretty innocuous to some and stomach-turning to others.
As we emerge slowly from lockdown and cinemas begin to reopen across the country, we're reminded of the fact that cinemas tend to bring out people's quirks every so often. Some people love the idea of mixing Malteasers with salty popcorn, while a small few actually drink those slushy machine things every time they're in a cinema. Some people happily bring sandwiches into a screening with them, while others prefer to go in with a simple bottle of water.
Cinemas have been closed now for over four months, and no doubt that the industry is reeling. A significant portion of cinema's earning capability comes from food concession stands. Popcorn is cheap and easy to make, and while it might be a little noisy, it doesn't have the same casting of smells that nachos has. Even with social distancing in cinemas, the smell would still travel. So is the answer in halting the sale of nachos?
It's easy to forget it, but cinemas are supposed to be a communal place. Not to get hokey or more sentimental than it already is, but humans gather around the fire to hear stories. We have to accept others as they are, and exist with their penchant for mildly aromatic snacks in a cinema - because the opposite to that is something that lacks a soul.
You'll never laugh quite as heartily, or feel a shock quite as intensely when you're sitting alone. Explosions or soaring musical scores just don't resonate in the same way when you're on a couch. The booming sound, the engrossing screen, all of it - you can't replicate that at home, no matter how good your sound system is or how big your TV is. When it's a cinema, you're locked in with it - nacho-cheese smells and all.
If, however, you check your phone, forget it - you deserve to be thrown out on your ass.