As follow-up to my last post, I have to write about this story because I think it’s just too funny.
The kindness of strangers—yes, it’s something that most all of us agree keeps us going in our busy and oftentimes challenging day-to-day lives. It’s an unexpected prize that gives us hope, like a five-dollar win on a lottery ticket or randomly bumping into an old friend on the street. I try to always remember the times strangers have extended kindness towards me and make a point of doing the same whenever a chance arises.
The other night I had a spur-of-the-moment desire to see a movie, so I went, solo. Having arrived rather early, I had my pick of seats and found one in a vacant row. There was room to put my drink, a spare chair on which to rest my bag and both arm rests free—great. But as soon as the theatre darkened and we transitioned from silent ads to coming attractions, floods of people poured in, and no longer was I alone. A family squeezed passed me taking the last three seats in my row, but still the ones to my immediate right and left were without bodies. I noticed a pair of women my age pacing up and down the stairs scanning the audience for a pair of seats to claim. Well, I thought to myself, I should probably move so these friends can sit together as I would want someone to do this for me. So I picked up my coat and bag that I’d plopped beside me. And while moving over, I tried to catch their attention and signal the spots for them. As they headed up the stairs a woman (also of the same age) stepped into the row and planted herself in one of the two, now empty chairs. Wait a minute, what? I didn’t move for you. Sure it’s first come, first serve at the movies, but really! Didn’t she see any other single seats she could’ve taken so the duos amongst us could stay intact? I cringed as she sprawled out taking over both seats, munching on her bag of popcorn without a care in the world. But a moment later a boy in a mother-son pair that was also on the hunt, came along and asked could he sit there. And of course, she said yes and cleared her things. Ok fine, so he found a place to sit, but throughout the movie he ended up having to pass the shared box of milk duds back and forth to his mom sitting behind him. I wondered for a second if it would have been strange had I leaned over and said, “Excuse me miss, I moved over for them”. Something told me to keep my mouth shut so I did. And though I’m laughing now, it totally ticked me off at the time.
Well…at least I tried.