Popcorn has been called “the great equalizer” because of its appeal to people at every level of American society. I think there’s something to that, because I can’t think of a single person I know who doesn’t like it. Speaking for myself, I avoided popcorn for quite a while, after a summer working at a movie theater concession stand. All the popcorn we sold was prepared in one tiny room located under the main theater, by a strange woman who resembled one of those little troll dolls with the bright green hair. Several times a day she’d emerge from a hatch in the floor like a hungry morlock in search of prey. Only instead of snatching and devouring a hapless eloi, she’d drop two sofa-sized bags of popcorn, grunt, then disappear back underground. The recurring image of that weird woman put me off popcorn for over a decade (plus gave me the occasional nightmare). You’ll be relieved to know that I’ve since made a full recovery.