Sunday, April 9, 2017

     Last night at the theatre, the four of us, our wonderful new friends from Cape Cod and Mr. Wonderful and I sat down in our seats to see The Little Foxes. We were congratulating ourselves on having chosen great seats where we had a clear view of the stage. When the lights went down, the couple in front of our friends decided to move from their own seats over one (an empty seat) thus completely blocking our friends’ view. I couldn’t believe it. Our female friend is very short, and it was now possible for her to see only by leaning way over to her left. I was livid. How dare they do that, and they didn’t even acknowledge to us that they hoped we could still see. 

     It is times like this that I don’t like me very much. I just wanted to shake them and say, “Excuse me, but that is not your seat, and by moving our friend can no longer see. If you notice she is very short, and she has difficulty seeing anyway.” Like they would even care. I was angry and ashamed that I could not and did not stand up for my friend. Could she have stood up for herself? Of course, but that’s not the point.

     Is it me, or was that rude and inconsiderate?

     The incident did bring up the topic of manners and acceptable behavior. We all agreed that people either don’t care because they’re just into everything for themselves, or they are clueless to consider others because they were never taught to do so. I am not talking about millennials here; I am talking full-grown adults over 50. 

     As a performer, the whole cell phone thing makes me crazy. I was performing at a church last year. Some old lady’s phone went off about three minutes into my script. I couldn’t believe it. The ringing was as loud as my grandma’s phone from the 40s. Somehow I managed to incorporate the faux pas into my script, but that interruption was unacceptable and could have ruined my train of thought. 

     Furthermore, if people cannot get to the theatre on time, then they should not be allowed to be seated once the performance has begun. Not only does this distract people in the audience, but it can’t help but distract the actors on stage. When we used to go to Stratford in Ontario, if you were even seconds late from returning from the restroom, you had to sit out in the hallway until the next act. That is as it should be everywhere. We insist that our children follow the rules, so why not do the same with adults? 

     What would you have done in my place? Of what am I afraid? A scene? Getting shot? Dunno. I guess I still need Assertiveness Training 101.