Lights outside Ragtag Cinema illuminate the sidewalk below. Photo by Asa Lory
Lights outside Ragtag Cinema illuminate the sidewalk below. Photo by Asa Lory

There is an awkward moment between fall and winter, between falling leaves and falling snow. This in-between season is a horrible mix of cold, windy and wet. People’s confused wardrobes display winter boots with sundresses, and raincoats piled on top of light t-shirts. Fall sports are ending, while winter ones have not yet begun. Teachers find themselves in a comfortable routine, without the soon-to-be stress of the semester ending.

Within this funny crevice falls a few sweet moments. Although Ragtag Cinema and Uprise Bakery are wonderful to go to anytime of the year, this is by far my favorite. On these overcast rainy days, the only thing that indulges my mellow mood is finding a seat by myself at the wooden tables, with a bowl of wild mushroom soup. My breath and the steam from the bowl fog up the glass as I lean up against it and let my mind wander.

Saturdays are never complete without a cup of joe and a French flick. The only thing that can top it comes next, the quiet and wonderful words, “You’re in theatre two.” Instead of stadium seats that occupy most movie theatres, Ragtag has arranged old couches and loveseats. My favorite spot is in the front row, a blue-grey long couch with worn out pillows and sides that are easy to sink into.

This place is a home for me during the odd fall/winter season. What is more perfect than a hot chocolate in ceramic mug? Especially to make it through a terrifying horror movie: you know, one of those that doesn’t even have blood and yet somehow it ends up terrifying you to your core.

Every movie has a personal touch. A emcee of sorts comes out before the previews even start, before the lights have fallen, and they explain why the theatre chose to show the movie, they open it up for questions and they usually tie it together with something that’s happening locally. They point out the quirks of the moviemaker, or the reason why they are in love with the main actress.

Before the lights go off, I look around. There is white haired couple calling back to the introducer with big glasses; it’s clear they’ve been here before. There are two young girls sharing a popcorn topped with chili pepper, laughing and eyes watering. The lights dim before I can continue my snooping, and I settle back into my couch. This is like my living room, but so much better.

I doubt there is a place better suited where Columbians can fall out of fall. So come in, put your umbrellas in the stand, walk around and admire the artwork, order something with a side of freshly baked bread and stay a while. Enjoy all your in-between moments in this homey cinema-café.

By Maria Kalaitzandonakes

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“See zos chickens?” her old Greek grandfather would say pointing to the pigeons, “all of zos are yours.” Growing up, all little girls think they’re princesses. But Maria’s kingdom never had a prince, never a castle. She reigned over her “chickens” and olive trees. Yup, it was all Greek to her. Rules in this kingdom were strict. Only A’s in school. No sleepovers. No painting the walls. In pre-school the teachers had her hearing tested three times, thinking that her piercingly loud voice must come from some sort of deafness. Maria, herself, never realized her life was odd until grade school, when the very American idea of “personal bubble space” puzzled her. And when physically unable to abide by the “arm’s length apart rule” Maria’s teacher gave her a hula hoop, which she had to walk around with as to not disrupt anyone’s personal space. When a little boy bothered her in middle school, Maria’s hot temper (Greek Blood as Maria’s father called it), got the best of her, and she yelled out a curse “gammoto!” and punched him in the face. In high school she embraced the crooked nose, the Christmas boat and the five gallon olive oil tin in her pantry. When Maria’s grandfather first saw a squirrel he said, “See zos fings” pointing to the unknown animal, “Do not be afraid of zem. You are a Greek, baby.” And with that, she had confidence in her future, as a non-squirrel fearing Greek princess. Maria is also the editor in chief for "The Rock" and "Southpaw". You can contact me at


  1. Haha I love ragtag but you forgot to mention how every time, without fail, some old lady in the audience shatters their wine glass in the middle of the movie. Otherwise, on point.


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