Friday March 7, 2014
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My husband and I love the concerts in the park. Even if we don't love the type of music planned for a particular evening, if we are in town, we go. The sheer pleasure of a lovely evening watching the sun go down over the mountains, being a part of a relaxing evening in our beautiful small town is wonderful.
That being said, I do not understand why some people go to the concerts and then talk throughout the entire evening. I am not talking about a chat during intermission, or a comment here and there. I am talking about a full fledged, lengthy, detailed and loud conversation. All while sitting in prime spots right in the center of the seating area.
The first week, a young couple along with an adorable little boy who was perhaps 7, sat about 10-15 feet away from us. The Doo Wop group, MC6, started performing and it was so cute to see the little boy positively enjoying the music. Amazingly, he was singing or mouthing the words to songs that were popular before his parents were born. He was bopping back and forth and was an absolute joy to behold. We love seeing kids enjoy music like that. About midway through the first set, an older couple with a dog approached the little family and struck up a conversation, before long, they sat down. They then continued to talk, quite loudly, disturbing the surrounding audience. The little boy stopped singing as it was "disrupting" the conversation. This conversation was loud enough that it was definitely impacting others around them. I got tired of it, and along with an older gentleman that was sitting near us, shushed them, and gave the loudest, the older woman, dirty looks. Finally, after a particularly loud "shush", the older couple got up and left. The sad thing was that at intermission, the young family left as well. I am sure that they were embarassed or angry or...? But did they not realize how rude the couple which joined them was being?
We have a friend who loves the concerts, and she smokes. I detest cigarette smoke and do not understand why someone would live in these beautiful mountains, surrounded by all of this lovely clean, mountain air and then want to foul the surrounding air with the detestable smell. Our friend is courteous enough that she sits on the outskirts of the audience so as to not bother others with cigarette smoke. There are others who love the music and the park, but cannot sit still, or want to meet a friend and have a conversation. Most of them, also sit on the outskirts, or walk the surrounding sidewalk.
What has happened to common courtesy, as well as common sense? Or am I being unreasonable?
You aren't being unreasonable.
Here are a few answers.
It is free. No one from the town to tell people to shut up or leave. Where are the volunteer police when you need them? Have a smoking area. No dogs allowed. Have a sign. Parents keep your kids with you and quiet. I love music, kids and dogs, but not together that is why I don't go to the concerts.
There are some of us who enjoy smoking even tho we know it is unhealthy. Yes, I am one of those nasty people. When I was going to my grandsons car races. I would get there early pick my spot as high as possible and light up. So people knew I smoked before they sat down. if I happened to be late, before I sat down I always asked the people already there if smoke bothered them, if so I found a different spot. Usually looked for someone who was already smoking. I am highly allergic to most perfume. I start coughing, my eyes and nose run immediatly. I get up and move. I have never in 35 yrs. said anything unless I was seated in a restaurant in the smoking area and someone had on perfume. I quietly ask the waitress to move me.
But Pat, you are one of the few courteous ones! You have mentioned before the steps that you take to ensure not bothering others with your smoke. Believe it or not, because of your comments about perfume, I am much more careful about when and where I wear perfume.
For me, I don't mind the kids, and even the dogs. I love seeing people enjoying the music; and I even don't object to people dancing and, yes, even singing to the music. That is what we are all there for...to enjoy the MUSIC. What I do object to is a very loud conversation carried on during the music. The older couple who were so rude? They were actually sitting with their backs to the stage! Their conversation was so loud and at odds with the music that some of us could not even focus on the tunes. As I have mentioned before, I wear hearing aids and I even went so far as to turn off the aid on the side facing the chatty people. No help, they were too loud. This week, the older woman showed up again, although this time she was without her husband and dog, and, once again she went wandering around, amongst the crowd, blocking views, stepping over and around people. Evidently, she didn't find anyone to distract this week, because she soon left.
Having been to two concerts now, I am a fan and love the outing. The J Powers band was outstanding as was the MC6 group. I look forward to the upcoming concerts.
I didn't experience any real disruption during either concert. Actually, a family with twins came in and sat in front of me with the stroller blocking the view....I just moved over. I'm not beyond shushing someone and would do it if I felt it necessary.
I smoke but would never dream of lighting up in the crowd. I was surprised when I saw one gentleman sitting on the sidewalk edge light up.
Overall, the concert series is a wonderful perk. I'll continue to go. I'll continue to be respectful of the people around me.....except when it comes to singing. Like it or not.....I'm going to sing to the songs I know.
Susan, that is EXACTLY the point I was trying to make!! Sing to your hearts content!!! That is enjoying the music and, while in my case, I can't carry a tune in a bucket, it still is in keeping with the concert aspect of enjoying the music. Carrying on a conversation that is filled with malicious gossip which is in no way related to, nor in tune with the melody is distracting and rude.
Sing, dance, bop away!!!
I want to apologize to anyone who was upset with "talkers" at the Blue Frog concert. I was a definite offender. My bad!
Aaaah, Susan, we were unable to attend. So, what was wrong with the concert that you could not listen to it?
Many left early and attendance wasn't close to the previous week. i attributed attendance to a Hawks game on TV.
I sat with a neighbor and we chatted. The band wasn't enough to keep me engaged.
You can always move away from the people who are trying to listen. Not everyone likes the same music.
The ones that didn't like it left early, but some must have liked it or they would have all left.
Once again, a great concert in the park was ruined for my husband and me.
John Carpino and the Hot Cappuccino's played last night and as we really like them, we deliberately arrived early, so as to be in a prime listening spot. We sat through the intermittent sprinkles, and enjoyed the sound check which was our indication that we had chosen our spot wisely.
Just as the music was starting, 2 older couples and a young man set up their chairs within about 5 feet of us. From the moment the chairs were in place the 2 older women started gabbing. One or the other of them was yapping from then on. When the music would get a bit louder, so would they. Almost as if they felt that the music was disturbing their conversation. The younger man, who appeared to possibly be a Military grandson maybe, started out enjoying the music, tapping his feet and generally moving to the beat. Finally, he gave up listening to the music and started playing with his smart phone.
I loudly "shushed" several times to no avail.
Finally , my husband who is one of the easiest going, no worries, kind of guy, asked if I minded leaving as he could not enjoy the music with these two harpies jawing next to him. We left just as intermission was starting.
Not only is this type of behavior rude, inconsiderate and discourteous to the people around you, it is exceedingly rude and disrespectful to the performers who come out, and give it their all, only to be ignored by some, in favor of a personal conversation.
I sincerely doubt that these people would behave thusly at a play, the opera or a concert for which they paid big money. Why then do they feel that they can and should be so extremely rude, simply because it is free?
If these people wish to chat and visit, stay home, or go to a coffee shop, or a restaurant, or move to a spot not surrounded by other people who truly wish to just enjoy the music.
These women were not the only ones, by any means. A large group behind us was also carrying on, just not constantly.
I apologize to John Carpino and his fellow performers for the rude people who made it impossible for us to enjoy the great music.
Should this happen in the future, I will not hesitate to approach the talkers and mention that I am certain that they would not knowingly be so incredibly rude as to disturb someone else's evening and that it would be appreciated if they would take their conversation elsewhere so as to not continue disturbing the enjoyment of others.
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