Last Friday, my boyfriend and I had the opportunity to attend a play put on by the university Theater called, “School for Scandal.” I vaguely knew what this play was about because I remembered learning something about it in school, perhaps that it was first performed sometime around the French Revolution. Anyway, we were glad to be going. I hadn’t been to a theater production since my senior year of high school when my choir went to an annual field trip to a dinner theater in Indianapolis. We got the tickets for free from our neighbor, the actor who played the main character, Sir Oliver Surface, in the play. He’s actually becoming something of a friend to us. I should say, to Won, because he introduced himself first. I probably never would have. As I’ve probably mentioned before, I’m terrible at making friends because I hate approaching people first.
I was very excited to see something put on by the university Theater. I knew to expect that the production would be high quality, so that in itself was exciting. I’ve also never been in any of the theaters at the university, so I was looking forward to that too. We were both eager to see our friend/neighbor in the play.
The one thing I was not looking forward to was the crowd. When we got there, which turned out to be quite early, we sat in our seat and I got stuck right next to a girl who had some hygiene issues. Apparently she was a student completing some sort of assignment that had to do with the play and she was dressed in what appeared to be pajamas, while most everyone else was in “business casual”. She was kind of smelly. Ok, she was very smelly! I just scooted closer to Won and tried to breathe through my mouth the entire night.
I hope some of you with OCD can relate to the fear of crowds. It’s not necessarily agoraphobia, or maybe it is, I’ve just never thought of myself as having it though. I think it has more to do with the idea of being around so many people breathing in a confined space and me having to touch a chair that may or may not have previously held an ill person. These irrational thoughts kept popping up in my mind throughout the play. Every time someone coughed, I tensed up a bit, but I kept my eyes on the stage. This play required enough attention as it was. The language was difficult for me to understand and I imagine Won was having trouble understanding too. Hopefully I wasn’t making that visible expression of disgust that I usually make when someone coughs or obnoxiously clears his or her throat. Who am I kidding? I definitely was doing that
Whenever I go anywhere to a function where I’m stuck in a room with lots of other people, mostly strangers, I do the funniest thing. I plan out at least 1 emergency “escape route” in case someone comes in with a gun and starts shooting at the crowd. This is probably one of the stranger things I do. This time, I imagined ducking below the seats, and crawling behind the pillars at the side of the theater and escaping stage left. In reality, I have no idea if these “escape plans” will ever be put to good use or will even work. It’s funny because my mom says that she does this too. We have never talked about it out loud to each other until somewhat recently, but we both admit to having done it for quite some time. I was kind of shocked that she does this too, but we’re so much alike that it’s scary, so it shouldn’t have been so surprising.
Ultimately, I enjoyed the play and I’m pretty sure my bf did too. I enjoy watching musicals more because of my background in music and my love for singing, but the play was somewhat funny, the costumes were fantastic, and the actors were/are incredibly talented. Not to mention, it was really fun to see our friend/neighbor acting in the play. Obviously, he was nothing like he is in real life, which is what acting is I suppose, but it was strange to see him in a different light nonetheless.
Even though I have difficulties with crowds, I think that I was excited enough to actual be going to a production that it didn’t really matter. I’m glad I went and I’m looking forward to going to more!