I am not a fattist. I spent years on the receiving end of that bias, so I’m sensitive. Nevertheless…
Arriving at the theater Sunday to discover that our two seats abutted a man whose arm and resident girth extended far over his appointed space. Now, aside from the obvious displeasure this engendered in me, I must reveal my over-sensitivity: I just don’t like touching anyone I don’t already know. Really. Is it a full-blown phobia? Not really. It’s an extreme preference. If I’m phobic about anything, it’s bad smells. Okay. I’m difficult, but I believe it’s all about heightened sensory capacity. I’m an uber-sensor. That’s my superpower. Details in another post…
Back to the realish-time storyline. Oh, God, my husband is talking to the big guy. (He got the seat next to him; there wasn’t a question. He’s a champ when it comes to accepting my ‘delicacy.’)
Guy (volunteers): “Not a lotta room!”
Hubbie (as if): “You’ve got to realize they built the theater when people were a lot smaller.”
No, I think, with extreme derision, everyone is/was/will be a lot smaller than this guy.
I have thought (too many times) that there should be special seating for the large and the tall. Give them their own section – charge a little more and let them deal with each other.
“Oh, YAY!” I exclaim as a very petite woman makes her way to the vacant seats in front of us. Buzz-killing husband points out she’s heading for the seat in front of him. “You can always switch with me,” he offers. I whisper (ever mindful of the feelings of others), “FAT CHANCE.”
A minute or two later, a second short woman arrives to fill the seat in front of me. “I thought it would be so,” says my wise companion. “They come in pairs.”
You would think that would be my gripe du jour. I wish it were. But wait, there’s more…
Crunching and crinkling
The lights dimmed and the truly hilarious and well-acted, It’s Only a Play swept us into that magical place; Nathan Lane and a brilliant cast generating guffaws and eye-wiping pleasure. But then it began. The unmistakable sounds of a bag of candy being opened and entered. Over and over again. The crackling and crunching began two seats over to my left (big guy was two to my right – is this a hell sandwich?) It was loud and like static, threatening to steal the show.
I’m a shusher (I know, you’re shocked to hear that), but I tried to engage my patient self. It will be over soon, was my hopeful thought. Maybe someone else will speak up – I don’t have to always be the one, do I?
No. It went on and on. It must have been the giant economy-sized bag. Give me a fucking break. Please? Not today. Because just as it subsided (but never stopped completely), over my shoulder a woman began responding to the actors on stage. Aloud. Yes. She was part of the play – inside her own self-deluded mind.
On this day I surrendered. White-flagging it. All you assholes win. This asshole will take it on the chin. I just thank the strong forces in the universe for Nathan Lane. His power to wash away even this level of bullshit was – as always – masterful.