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« Stroke Away the Stress | Main | Making My Mark »

June 04, 2010


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You did the right thing. You stood up for yourself without cause a huge scene. That has to count for something. I'm pretty sure others would have handled it with a whole lot less grace.

Isn't it funny how kids are? They want to crawl in a hole when we speak above a whisper and in, what they'd consider, out-of-turn. It's from being taught to just listen and do as you are told from the day they were born.

My son is the same way. He wouldn't think of ever talking back to someone...even if they were dead wrong -good for you! I bet she'll remember later on that it's ok to stand up for herself especially when someone is rude to her.

Firstly, I so love the picture. It wreaks elegance.

You have given a good advise to the usher. Hopefully she'll remember to be nice the next time.

Beautiful picture. I always used to embarrass my daughter like that:). Now that she has a job and has to work and pay for things, she understands much more what's going on...

Good for you. I find it ironic that our children get embarrassed at things their parents do yet they do the same things and it's ok. Go figure!

Kids are like that. My ex husband was like that too. I am usually ok being assertive about shitty customer service. My ex once yelled at me at a Hertz counter at LAX because I lost it (a little bit, but politely, of course) due to horrific customer service.

(That should have been writing on the wall for me.) (ha)

I love embarrassing the kids. :) I'm sure the neighboring theater patrons would have agreed with you. I find it interesting that D#1 was willing to chastise you for your behavior towards the usher but she didn't think of chastising the usher for her attitude towards the other woman. She stayed within her comfort zone.

You did the right thing. As long as you are polite, but firm, in standing up against injustice, nobody should criticize you.

In another venue, perhaps the drugstore where the clerk is visibly impatient with and rude to the sweet old man ahead of you, the even better thing to do is to talk to the manager, who will sigh and tell you that he has gotten several complaints about this woman and is going to Take Care of It.

Sometimes, though, you have to handle things immediately. I would have been thrilled to see you in action.

I'm with you! I can not abide rudeness. There is never a reason for it. I totally would have said something too.

You were absolutely right. Why on earth should and other human be allowed to walk over us... to hurt our feelings or begin lowering our self esteem? Why must people ever be that rude anyway? Get a job unloading trucks in a warehouse if you don't want to deal with the public..... don't even think about applying for the "service' industry positions. A lot of them still need to look the word up in a dictionary...which, actually most of them don't even know how to use anymore....

I used to put up with being told what to do... it came from having to duck if I didn't.... but, once I finally became an adult ... crawled out of my shell and caught up with the learning curve and became a discerning human being....well, nobody speaks like that to me now .... ever. And, every time I hear that, I go out of my way to speak up. For whomever is being spoken down to or especially if it is me at the receiving end of rudeness.

There is no need for rudeness and insolence. I don't care if her best friend just died... she has a job to do and needs to suck it up and be polite, just as we all need to do in dealing with others. It's the decent thing to do. Where has decency and common sense gone these days?
But, sometimes, I do feel that a situation almost requires some guerilla warfare counter terrorist tactics.

Case in point...
Situation at the golf course just the other day.... First, a glare because some old guys and myself wanted to buy coffee after a round... apparently we were interrupting the woman behind the counter as she was eating her lunch. Then...with mouth full of food after stuffing in another huge forkful even after she knew we wanted coffee... slamming cups around and splashing our coffee on counters and over the edges of cups... When I corrected her on the drinks ...another slam of cups and the steeliest of looks... and "Whaddya want anyway?" in a totally rude voice. I just looked her straight in the eye, leaned over close to her and said very quietly ... my usual.... if you don't settle down and do your job...I'll settle you down... face first on the counter. Now, throw this shit out and start over.... ... .. then I straightened up, still looking her straight in the eye with my poker face look. She quickly grabbed the cups, made a beeline for the sink and did exactly that. Not one more word, no apology, and next week... she likely won't have a job either. I'm not one to stand still for that. Put up with it for too many years. She's been reported and hopefully... we won't have to put up with her again. If we do.... well, she'll certainly remember who I am... and I better see a huge difference in attitude....

Probably the reason I don't have stress...I just get it out of my system....

Good for you for standing up for yourself and the poor woman next to you. I always marvel at the officious natures of some people - what's the big deal, even if you had been in the wrong seat? We're talking about theater, not atomic weapons, right?

That being said, I remember well that feeling of your daughter's. If my parents sent back undercooked or overcooked food in a restaurant, I nearly died of embarrassment. :)

As mothers, I think we must mortify our children a dozen times a day, especially those of us who do stand up to bullys or people who are unkind. What amazes me is that this cringing by our kids starts so early. At first, I'd step back and be almost apologetic. But the heck with that nonsense. I, too, want my girls to feel they can right a wrong. Kudos to you. When your daughter has children, she will remember this time and this valuable lesson. But you'll have to wait awhile.

Good for you. Had you and the others in the audience not purchased those tickets that woman may not have a job. People forget who ultimately pays their bills, even if they don't directly sign the paycheck.

I'm with you. Actually, I probably would have gone to complain to the usher's manager. I'm big on customer service. I worked retail, I know what it's like to be behind the counter. And I also know that if I didn't shop there, you wouldn't have a job. Part of the usher's job is to make your experience a pleasant, orderly one. And she failed miserably. Sorry daughter #1 didn't see it that way!

I have this little bit of mischief in me that actually enjoys embarrassing my children.

I think you might have this too.

Come on, it's kinda fun. And it's so easy. Watching them squirm is entertaining.

I think we should do it more often.

They really hate the fact that their friends think I'm the "cool" mom. To them, I'm a total lunatic.

A lunatic with a mischievous smile.

I think we are sharing the same daugther in some parallel universe! This is EXACTLY the same conversation we would have had in the same situation. Go you for speaking up!

I totally agree with you, the usher's behavior was just unnecessary and your reaction perfectly justified.

Last weekend though, we had a bit of a role reversal. At my 2nd daughter's band performance, my older daughter loudly shushed a group of unruly preteens that were sitting in the row just in front of us. One of the girls glared at my daughter, who replied with "yeah, I AM talking to you." It was funny and deserved, but still I worried we'd end up with a hair pulling match before the night was over. I don't think I have to worry about her NOT speaking up for herself. I should take a page from her book...and yours. ;)

There's a fine line between being rude and sticking up for yourself. I think you handled yourself very well.

It is a little fun embarrassing our kids, isn't it?

OH man, do I ever wish that you had actually asked the people in the rows in front of you. Now THAT would really have embarrassed your daughter.

I can tell my husband and I are going to put the kids through some tough times when they are teenagers. We are quiet people, in general, but when we are together, and in public, we get this kind of crazy, loud courage when dealing with others.

I'm surprised you didn't get a standing ovation from all the other ticket holders in ear shot of the usher! Good for you.

Good for you. You know that in about 25 years, she'll be the mom standing up for herself to the rude usher, and her own daughter will be the one cringing!

The thing is she doesn't have to be a Lioness with you sitting beside her. It might be interesting to see what would have happened if her younger sister was there.
Or in a few years time when she has a few of her own.

That's awesome. I would have told off the usher too. And I'm sure, if you'd asked around, everyone would agree that you did the right thing.

A big BRAVO to this! (Or should I say hallelujah?) More of us need to stand up and say NO to those who are rude rude rude. Good for you.

I agree with you! I can't stand rude people.

I would have reported her to the manager. Seriously, when so many good, NICE ppl are out of work, and THIS gal has a job?

M, I would have given you six hail and 2 our fathers. :)

Always Bumby

Maureen, first of all, even though I also can't stand when my kids are mortified when I rightfully speak up for myself, it's very interesting that she's absorbed her Catholicism! Or maybe it was just to use against you! Anything to torment a mom!

What drives me nuts? When I'm sticking to my guns and my son mutters something in my ear to the effect of how I appear to be a nut job or to calm down because I'm clearly going nuts. One of the worst things about parenthood: the muttering child.

Over from Pseudo who highly recommended you! I was a kid like that, still am when conflict is open but you absolutely did the right thing! Kids need to learn assertiveness vs aggression. I have friends who live on the Vineyard, I have designated a place there as where I'd like to spend my last moments :)

Well I guess I need to call my mom and apoligize. I just recently got on to her for making a scene. Although she doesn't stop at one simple sentence, she goes on and on till she is satisfied that the offender understands their error!

I love this.

Since I'm not Catholic, I'm not sure how my daughter, older and in the same position, would respond. We're LDS, so maybe, hmn, let's see. I've got it! "Mom, now you have to go make two casseroles." :D

In any event, I completely agree with how you handled this. Not making a big deal of it, but calmly standing your ground, takes courage and class, which you have in spades.

Good for you! I know I for one, would have agreed with you. Rude people ought to take a long walk off a short pier. She could have accomplished her mission much more quickly if she had politely explained her problem and helped you to sort it out.

:o\ mean people suck.

Isn't it fun being a mother? I think the ability to embarrass the children and KNOW we are RIGHT to embarrass them is soooo very precious... that's probably not in MOM 101 but it's true....

In my opinion the world needs more people to speak up!

Well, yeah....everyone WAS looking...but it was because that usher was so rude and out of line!

It's so hard to find the line between standing up for yourself and picking your battles...trying to teach our kids when it's right to speak up and when to just let it go...

I'm glad you spoke up. That usher needed to be reminded of a little thing called "courtesy".

They would have agreed with you. That woman was rude.

If anyone needs to do Penance it's the usher. Don't we beat ourselves up enough without having to add anything extra...such as penance, anyway?! But, you know I feel a little strongly about this subject.

They would have agreed with you, of course! I never think that quickly on my feet. My parents didn't instill in me the ability to defend myself or stand up for myself. I don't think it was intentional; they just always wanted me to be nice to everyone, regardless of how they treated me. And I didn't understand that that meant that I was NOT to be a doormat. I still struggle with that to this day.

Oh, they TOTALLY would have agreed with YOU. And if I had been sitting in the vicinity when you offered to ask, I would have piped up and said so. ;)

Yea, Maureen! Isn't it surprising, our kids' reactions when Mom or Dad stands up for themselves to strangers? But I bet someday when something like this happens to D#1, she will look back to this situation for guidance on how to deal with it.

That photo is adorable. I'm glad that you stood up for yourself and that your daughter saw you do it. Girls need to understand that it is OKAY--noble even--to defend yourself when people behave badly.

I often put people in their place if they are rude to me, not in an antagonistic way but in a manner that is firm and as polite as possible.
I recently was outside of a hospital in Boston photographing birds and flowers, killing time, when a security guard started yelling at me for photograhing patients walking in and out of the building. This lady was out of control and was accussing me of something that I would never do, she ranted on and on.
When she finally stopped yelling at me, I responded in a calm manner and told her she needs to approach people in a different manner and shouldn't make accusations. We parted amicably and I must say I will never take pictures outside a hospital again.

Good for you! I hate when others are rude and obnoxious, but rarely say anything (even though I'm thinking it in my head) because you never know if someone is going to take out a gun and shoot you. Behavior like this is so inappropriate. We have kids in school who behave in this manner and then when we meet their parents, we see why. It's a never ending cycle with some people.

I say good for you for speaking up. I hate people with power trips in positions like that. Grrr. I'm the person who says "THANK YOU" after the person who didn't actually thank me when I held the door for them so I'm in your camp..

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