My least favorite ushering role is packing people in rows during general admission show. People just don’t like sitting next to strangers.
I was helping a lady find her seat. I guess the Blind Boys of Alabama spit or something because nobody wanted to sit in the front row, but those were some of the few empty seats in the FAC.
“So I can sit here.” She asked, pointed at the open front row seats. I replied in the affirmative.
“Or I could go sit up in those red chairs.” Her eyes were gleaming at the though of sitting in the red Mezz chairs, I could tell.
“Ma’am, those are only for our extremely elderly or handicapped guests.”
“Well I am disabled. My arm, I left my cast in the car but I swear I need it and disabled,” she then pulled up her sleeve to show me a perfectly normal wrist and sped up the stairs toward the red chairs before I could say a word.
Then I had to ask a party of four old people to move one chair down bc there was an open chair in the middle of the row. So I asked the old man sitting closest to the empty seat. He passed this information down to the other three, and apparently the other three were dumb and he had to explain it several times.
“Why,” asked the ancient looking woman next to him, “can’t a person coming in late just sit in that seat?”
So I patiently explained to her that with the lights darkened climbing over people is not only inconvienent for everyone but also dangerous.
“You lady,” said the first old man, “there is a member of our party who has terminal cancer. So much so that we are not even sure she is going to make it through the performance, so we will stay in our seats.”
To any person younger than 73 I would have shouted, “Do not pull that bullshit on me!” Followed by some choice cuss words. But a)even though it was my second-to-last event working as an usher I still did not want to get lectured by Michael or April and b) yelling at old people is considered a no-no.
I cannot wait until I am old, I will be able to get away with whatever I want. And you can be damn sure that I will get away with a lot.