Live music adds a dimension to albums that cannot be felt or experienced through listening at home. So every opportunity I have to go to a concert of my liking, I buy tickets. A few weeks ago, while attending a show I had waited for all summer, I found myself rethinking my character.
As the first band was nearing their set’s end, I began to hear an annoying conversation to the left of me. A short brunette on a date with a short blond man, sipping a pink drink from a Dixie cup, was chatting about last weekend’s events. I had paid for a concert. Instead, I was hearing a Lindsay Lohan version of a Friday night. Many times, I would have ignore this behavior, but being in the front row, I found it rude that I couldn’t hear my band playing. So I turned to the couple with utter disregard for tact and humanity and spoke, “Would you like me to ask them to stop so you can finish your conversation?”
With this, the air left the room. The girl welled up, “I’m so sorry.” Her date went stone face. He was livid. Moments later, I was feeling awful. How could I have treated strangers so badly? I regretted my straightforwardness, regardless of it’s necessity. Resolving myself to an apology, I turned to the couple following the final song. “I’m really sorry I treated you so badly. It was very rude, and I didn’t mean to hurt you.” The girl says, “Oh, its ok. We’re sorry.” However, the boyfriend wasn’t so forgiving, “You were rude.” I responded, “I’m sorry, that’s all I can say.” He responds, “Yeah, well, you were really rude.” The boy’s girlfriend is now trying to quell his energy by saying, “It’s ok,” repeatedly while holding his hands and looking into his eyes. The broken record wasn’t going to stop unless I ended it. “I’ve already apologized twice. I won’t be doing it again.” And with that I turned back to my group. It took another set to feel like lasers weren’t pointed at my head.
I realized, even though it’s a funny story, there’s a right and wrong way to do something. Tact is always the right way.