What an amazing journey.
I gotta tell you. This line was difficult, painful, stressful, sleepless, wet, sticky, smelly, and loud, but it was the best time I have had in at least three years.
I cannot thank all of you enough. Everyone in line played fair and we all had a great time. When I was standing at the front of the Theater at the 10:30pm show while my brother took the group photo, I could see that everyone was so happy, and electricity was in the air. People enjoyed the movie, and everyone had a good time. That's why we did this.
After it was all over, I stood out front of the theater and talked about the movie with my friends and family. I hugged Bob, chatted with Edwin (I hope your film career goes well in L.A.), and said goodbye to a great many others who spent their time waiting in a city parking lot for the end of an era.
I did not realize until I climbed into my truck that I was the last one to leave. First one in, last one out. Believe me, I did not plan it that way, but it felt a bit erie driving through the empty parking lot. The people are gone, and now it's time for memories to take over.
I'll never do this again. I have a child, I have a career, and I don't know where life will lead me. This was one of the best weeks of my life, and I don't think I'll ever find a sense of community like that again. Six years ago, I was waiting for a movie. Today, I have a lifetime of memories and stories that I'll tell my great-grandkids.
People knock me for "acting like a child". I hear a lot that waiting in line for a movie is immature, and that I should "pay attention to the important things in life". Well, I may be in better touch with my inner child than most others, and that may cause me to act like a kid sometimes, but that also helps me to remember just how happy I was in 1977 when my aunt took me to see Star Wars for the first time. That sense of wonderment and childhood happiness is difficult to re-create, and is something that no one should ever forget. There are only two places I can still find it; in line waiting for these films with all of you, and in my daughter's eyes.
You all gave me the best birthday present ever - your company. I hope I see you all again. I know I'll see some of you again soon. Take care, stay happy, and. . .
May the force be with you.