A Smelly Symphony Saved!

, , , | Working | July 1, 2020

I’ve recently moved very close to our city’s symphony orchestra center, and I want to attend performances when I can afford it. Unfortunately, the symphony is pretty expensive, and even a seat at the very back of the concert hall has to be budgeted for. 

I purchase my first ticket, and I am so excited! I figure, since you’re at the symphony to listen more than to watch, being at the back of the concert hall won’t be that bad. I make it to my seat, and just before the show starts I feel someone take the seat behind me. I am immediately engulfed in a cloud of noxious perfume, so bad my eyes start to water instantly. 

I’m a little sensitive to strong perfume or aerosol smells, but the average amount most people wear isn’t enough to trigger a reaction. This case is ridiculous. It’s like she’s DOUSED herself with the entire bottle. She also keeps fidgeting and leaning closer to the back of my seat as she rearranges herself, each time bringing the smell closer. 

I try to enjoy the music, but by the intermission I can barely keep my eyes open, my throat is burning, and my nose is clogged. I leap up and go outside for some fresh air. This symphony ticket is the most expensive thing I’ve bought for myself in months, and I think I am going to have to just deal with it. 

I am coming back inside when an older woman who is volunteering as an usher comes over to me. 

Usher: “Are you all right, sweetie?”

Me: “Huh? Yes, I’m fine. Thank you.”

Usher: “You look like you’ve been crying. Are you sure?”

Me: “Oh! No, it’s okay. I wasn’t crying, but the woman seated behind me has on some very strong perfume and it’s aggravating my sinuses.”

Usher: “Well, we can’t have that!”

She grabs my arm with a surprisingly strong grip and propels me over to the box office. 

Usher: *To the ticket agent* “This young lady needs a new seat, please. She’s having a reaction to another guest’s perfume and it’s affecting her ability to enjoy the symphony.”

Ticket Agent: “Of course!”

The ticket agent prints off a new ticket and hands it to the usher.

Ticket Agent: “I hope you enjoy the second half of the performance.”

All this is done in seconds, before I can even get a word in. Then, the usher has me by the arm again and we head down the stairs to the main floor of the concert hall. She leads me to an amazing seat in the center orchestra section. This seat easily costs twice what I paid for my original seat.

Me: “Wow, thank you so much! You didn’t have to move me to such a nice seat.”

Usher: “Nonsense! Everyone should enjoy their time at the symphony! You take care, now.” 

I got seated with just a few minutes to spare before intermission was over. Thankfully, no one around my new seat had the same perfume over-application as my previous seat, and I was able to truly enjoy the second half. It had honestly never occurred to me that I could ask to switch seats, if one happened to be open. Now I know, at least at this venue, that it’s an option.

Thank you again, kind usher lady. You made my first symphony experience so much better!


This story is included in our Feel-Good roundup for July 2020!

Read the next Feel-Good Story here!

Read the July 2020 Feel-Good roundup!

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A Kornucopia Of Surprises

, , , , , | Related | February 3, 2020

(My sister and I are at a concert for a band named after a grain. We overhear this conversation outside as an old man drops someone, presumably his grandson, off.)

Man: “Oh, this is a concert!”

Concert Goer: “Well, duh! What did you think this was?”

Man: “When you said you needed a ride to see corn, your grandmother and I thought you were going to some weird farmer show or something.”

(I have no idea what they were expecting it to be like, but I’m certainly curious what a four-hour show about corn would have been like.)

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His Common Sense Is Disabled

, , , , | Working | January 29, 2020

(We’re at a concert. There are four of us. My mom and I both have disabilities, and my stepmom is in a motorized scooter. So, we walk up to the ADA section…)

ADA Guard: “Sorry, only one person per disability.”

Mom: “Okay, my wife is in a scooter, my daughter has a brace on her leg, and my other daughter is a minor. So, five.”

ADA Guard: “Sorry, ma’am. Minors still count as people.”

Mom: “You expect me to leave my eleven-year-old daughter in the general admission area alone?!”

ADA Guard: *doesn’t see the problem* “Yes, ma’am.”

(We ended up getting his manager.)

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It Takes A Surgeon To Get You Through Border Control These Days 

, , , , , , | Working | December 2, 2019

(I am going to a concert with my parents, and my mother is recovering from surgery on a broken hand during which she had numerous pins placed to stabilize the bones. Her hand is also encased in a cast. We go through the metal detectors, and naturally, my mother’s hand sets off the detector. The security guard pulls out the wand to spot-check my mom, and asks her if she has any metal that she hasn’t removed.)

Mother: “Yes, I have six pins in my hand to set the break.”

Security Guard: “You need to remove them.”

Mother: “They’re implanted into my hand and covered with a solid cast. I can’t remove them.”

Security Guard: “You can’t go in with metal. You need to remove the metal and go through the scanner again.”

Mother: “Are you a surgeon?”

Security Guard: “No.”

Mother: “These are surgical pins that have been placed into my bones by a surgeon. They’re not coming out.”

Security Guard: “You still need to remove the metal.”

Mother: *ready to wallop the guard with the cast* “Unless you are willing to pay any medical bills from pulling these pins, they are not coming out.”

(Finally, a manager came over, realized the extent of my mom’s injury, told the guard he was an idiot, and let us through.)

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About To Have A Row About The Row

, , , , | Friendly | September 20, 2019

(My wife and I are in our seats, waiting for a concert to start. In the defense of the person in the “wrong” here, this particular venue didn’t label each individual row, so it can be confusing.)

Man: “Excuse me. I think you’re sitting in our seats.”

Woman: “No, we’re not.”

Man: “Um, yes, you are.”

Woman: “No, we’re not.”

Man: “Okay, um, can we see your tickets?”

Woman: “Sure. See? We’re in row 22, seats 1 and 2.”

Man: “But this is row 24.”

Woman: “No, it’s not. See–” *pointing to the row ahead* “–23.”

Man: “Right. That’s 21, that’s 23, so this would be 24.”

Woman: “Oh, my gosh, you’re right. I am so sorry. Oh, no. I am my mother’s daughter.”

(During the concert, the performer actually comes down the aisle and sings right in people’s faces. He even pretends to take the hat of the person in row 22 and sings to her for a bit.)

Friend: “Good thing you sat in the right spot.”

Woman: “Ha, yeah, it sure is.”

(We looked back at the man in row 24. He wasn’t laughing.)

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