Silent Sunday


Hong Kong – freedom

I broke the no words rule this week. It’s the first time ever.



At the Writers’ Theater Saturday, I was astounded. During the intermission an older couple went out into the lobby. They had put their coats on the empty seats beside them. While they were gone a middle aged couple, who’d seen empty seats besides their friends came, moved the first couple’s seats and made themselves comfortable planning to stay in their new seats.

The old man returns and is furious when he sees the new couple and their coats placed on his chair. He lays into the middle aged man, whose wife starts shouting at him.

“How would you like it if someone threw your coats around?”

Cool it. Your coats’ are fine.

“Are those your seats?”

“No, we were up in the obstructed view area. These seats were empty.”

“You can’t sit there. Those aren’t your seats.”

And on and on. As the argument escalated the middle aged wife got loud and was swearing. The old man swore back and insulted the seat stealing husband saying that he knew who wore the pants in that guy’s family. The husband just turned his head.

Everyone was staring. My friend, who knew the middle aged couple because their kids went to the same high school. The ushers didn’t intervene. They seemed to be afraid of the fighters. While both sides threatened to call in the ushers, neither did. In time the old man’s wife came back, and everyone calmed down.

I was just shocked that neither side would back down or apologize. I can’t get over the insults and swearing in public with strangers. How odd.