Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Can't We All Just Get Along?

Husband and I went to Seattle with good friends to see Chris Daughtry in concert last weekend. I was a little disappointed in the quality of the show; Chris' voice was obviously not in top form. The music was great, though, and he performed a good variety of songs. Overall, not a bad show. But I'm not in a rush to go back to another concert of this type, and here's why.

We sat three rows behind a woman I dubbed "crazy hand dancer". CHD decided to stand for one of the opening acts, and rarely sat down through the entire evening. As a person who is vertically challenged (I might be 5' 2" on a very tall day), I often have a difficult time viewing events when people stay seated. Luckily my husband is a trooper and usually offers to swap seats with me to improve my viewing angle. Unfortunately, in this case, CHD managed to disrupt the view of a large number of folks, and not just by standing. She kept her arms over her head and "danced" to the music the entire time! Of course, this encouraged her companions to do the same. And since they stood, we stood. And since I'm...short..., this meant standing on tiptoes and bobbing & weaving the entire time. Here's a shot I took towards the end of the show, after CHD migrated down her row out of my direct line of vision where she had been most of the show. On the plus side, I'm glad I wasn't seated behind the two women who waved lighted multi-colored foam batons over their heads the entire show!

So what's behind the idea of standing for the entire concert? Many people think that since they paid good money for the ticket, they have the right to do whatever they want in their seat. There are also those who think that standing is a way of showing respect for the artist. But what about respect for fellow concertgoers? Have we become so self-centered that we don't care how our actions reflect on others? In the case of concerts, at least, I think that is a true statement.

From now on, I'll be a little more careful when choosing seats for a show. If I have to pay big bucks to get front row seats in the balcony, I'll do it. Otherwise I won't go. I will continue to attend shows where people don't usually stand, like outdoor concerts at the winery, or free concerts at our local casino, as well as other events where the audience is typically older and hopefully more considerate of others.

On a side note, we bought tickets last year to a concert at our local casino, only to discover that seating for paid events is different from seating for free events. In the free concerts, you may bring a blanket or low lawn chairs, or use the provided folding chairs. In the paid concert, you are prohibited from bringing in anything to sit on. Worse still, absolutely no chairs were provided! Concertgoers either stood the entire time, or sat on a patch of grass far back from the stage. Neither of those options were acceptable, in my mind. Consider me fooled once.

I think the selfish approach of many concertgoers is another reflection of the selfishness prevalent in today's world. It's the idea of ME FIRST, to the exclusion of all others. Well, I don't buy into that. And I hope you don't either.


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