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A Rambling Man 5

I have a theory about popcorn. I will illustrated by an anecdote.

In 2011 I began managing a brand new theatre. This was exciting as it would be the first time I had total control of a brand new, clean and working properly, popcorn popper. All the training I’ve given culminated in teaching the kids how to keep this clean and have pride in it.

After a month there were a few kids beginning to slack on cleaning. They felt it didn’t make a difference. Some of the other kids were curious if it did. I gathered them together and gave my most important lesson.

When you pop popcorn you must pop it with love.

Some snicker, some scoff, some are curious. I began a batch. When you fill the container with seed too quickly you don’t get the correct amount. If you throw or pour popcorn salt in the container, you don’t know what it will taste like. If you hit the oil dispense button haphazardly you won’t get the correct amount of oil. Did you close the lid properly? Are you listening to the pops like I taught? Do you make sure the lid opens correctly? Do you wait til the right pop rate to dump it?

They taste the corn. It’s bland. Like store bought popcorn.

I pop another batch and do everything right. Dump. Taste. It’s not bad but not as good as cinema corn can be. Why is that?

Because you need to pop it with love, the ingredient everyone misses. I go thru the process again but put the amount of popcorn salt I prefer in. The corn container is full with a little dumped out. I do two oil pumps. I listen intently. I dump it exactly at the right pop. They taste it and even the most firm non believer says it tastes better.

I have each person pop a batch with love, and explain that they need to make corn that they want to eat. Not what I did or some formula or by rules. Each one pops slightly different but delicious popcorn.

They get excited. They clean that kettle perfectly. They get compliments from customers. They get speed and consistency. They make the best corn.

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