|What I wanted to say to The Grinch|
My mom took all the girls to see the Toledo Ballet's performance of The Nutcracker today. The kids were so excited as they're all dancers (the oldest two are in ballet and lyrical, while Emma is in tap and lyrical).
As the auditorium filled up, it was clear that this was the "kid show" (it was the Sunday matinee, after all). Every row was filled with parents and grandparents with young kids in tow. Every row except ours. Aside from our group (me, my mom, my sister, and three girls ages 6 to 9), the rest of our row was filled with a group I have name The Grinches.
Emma was sitting next to me and as the lights dimmed she started WHISPERING questions to me "Mommy, where is Clara?" "When is the Mouse King going to be on?" "Where is the Nutcracker?" (See what I said there? She WHISPERED her questions...as quiet as a mouse).
They were the simple queries of a little girl who was beyond excited to see this show.
Suddenly, Mr. Grinch leans over and says "She shouldn't be talking during the show."
I replied (with my blood boiling), "She's five." (In actuality, Emma is six, and will be seven in a month but I was so mad that my brain made her five).
And he said "She needs to learn sometime."
What that what?
Friends I tell you I had to literally BITE MY TONGUE for fear of what I might say to Mr. Grinch. I was (and still am) so INCREDIBLY ANGRY that someone - a complete stranger - had the gall to tell me to silence my child and in turn, try to give me parenting lessons.
It took all my willpower to not turn to him - during the opening scenes - and tell him exactly what I thought of his rude, callous, narrow-minded, hateful behavior.
Instead, I whispered to Emma that we needed to talk even quieter because there was a 'grumpy' man next to me who didn't like people talking. She proceeded to look at him and stick out her tongue. I found great humor in that. (And it should be noted here that NO ONE but ME saw her do this because it was DARK in the auditorium. Although I do sort of wish Mr. Grinch would have seen it.)
At the intermission the woman in front of me turned around to tell me how appalled she was at Mr. Grinch's behavior and that he had also told her and her friends to be quiet. Then, the lovely family two rows behind me (whose adorable little girls who excitedly asked questions throughout Act I) said they too had been told to 'shut up' by The Grinch and his Grinchy family.
The Grinches had also threatened to call the ushers on everyone seated around them. I guess perhaps they should have watched the show from soundproof bubble. [It was at this point that I wished I was suffering from bronchitis so that I could disrupt their viewing even more.]
And in fact one member of The Grinch Family DID call an usher on the Adorable Girls family when the grandma told them the girls were not going to "be quiet." The usher actually walked down the aisle after Act II started, shined his flashlight at the little girls and then stood "watch" at the end of the row just to make sure no one was misbehaving.
What the hell is wrong with people?
The Nutcracker has NO DIALOGUE at all. It's music and dancing, that's it. And if you happen to be 4 or 5 years old you are going to have questions. And in my mind, kids have every right to ask those questions during a matinee performance that HAS AN AUDIENCE FULL OF KIDS. This was not a black tie formal event. It was a family affair.
So I can only hope that Mr. Grinch and his family receive nothing but coal in their stocking this year because they are the first winners of my 2013 "Bah Humbug" Awards. There was no excuse for their unkind words and negative attitude toward little kids. And I fear there is no hope that Mr. Grinch's heart will ever grow three sizes. Ever.
[An update: As you'll see from several comments it appears that some people believe I am a horrible mother for allowing my child to ASK QUESTIONS during a live performance. Oh, and it's also appalling to some that I found it amusing that my first grader had a "normal" kid reaction and stuck out her tongue. An act, which by the way, NO ONE SAW BUT ME. How dare I allow my child to be a normal six year old? She's probably going to grow up to be a sociopath because I laughed when she stuck out her tongue. From some of the comments on here it also appears that some people think I should be banned from all future viewings of The Nutcracker or any other live performance because my daughter and I are classless people who don't belong at public performances of any sort because we don't understand THE RULES. It must be wonderful to be so perfect and have the freedom to pass judgment on everyone.]
ANOTHER UPDATE: I have had to remove a comment left by someone named "Pam" because she had the nerve to call Emma - my first grader - a BRAT and therefore I am also closing comments on this post. Clearly some of the people who chose to visit my blog over the past two days and leave their negative and judgmental comments believe that it is OK to attack young kids via a comment box. I find this sickening and incredibly disheartening. I cannot imagine EVER leaving a comment on anyone's blog that called their child a "brat" or anything other negative term. The fact that people like "Pam" exist in this world makes me sick to my stomach.