DEAR MISS MANNERS: I saw a wonderful show recently, but the first act was nearly ruined by a seating problem.
I settled into my seat at 7:25 with the help of an usher. During the overture, a mother and daughter arrived and sat in the two open seats on my right. After the show started, another mother and daughter arrived and made their way to the sole remaining seat on our row, on my left.
The woman to my right loudly hissed at me, “You’re in the wrong seat.” I ignored her. She then said, louder, “You’re in their seat.”
I replied, “My ticket is for seat 125. I’m in seat 125.” She asked what row, and I told her row E. On my left, the daughter sat in her mother’s lap for a few scenes, then they left our row for other seats (climbing over about a dozen people for a second time while the show was in progress).
Miss Manners: I waved and kept walking. Was that rude?
Miss Manners: This germ-spreading kid’s parents did nothing
Miss Manners: I’m hurt that the bride turned down my gift
Miss Manners: Why is my weight the first thing people mention?
Miss Manners: The pandemic is no excuse for the way they’ve treated me
Several people around us then started asking the woman on my right to be quiet, as did I. She replied very loudly, “Don’t tell me to be quiet.” Unfortunately, at that point, I did so again. I spent the rest of the first act dreading a confrontation at intermission.
When I have encountered seating problems like this on airplanes or in theaters, I start with the premise that I might be wrong, saying something neutral like, “It seems one of us may be in the wrong seat” or “Did they assign us both the same seat?” Rather than accusing the other person of being wrong, I leave open the possibility that I might be wrong, or that the venue has made a mistake. Being accused of being in the wrong seat, loudly and while the show …
Source:: The Mercury News – Lifestyle