All in all, I do fairly well in crowds. Fairly well. But when being with that crowd goes on for hours and hours, I can feel myself getting to a breaking point. Often, I just take a few deep breaths and regain control of myself before I snap. Often, however, isn't 100%, and there are times when I ... snap.
At the Rally to Restore Sanity, last I heard there were about 250,000 people. That's a lot of people. A big crowd, if you will. It was a pretty tame crowd, too. There were lots of people milling about, criss-crossing through the seating areas to get to the port-o-lets (yuck) and food areas and then back to their seats. There were lots of "excuse me, just passing through" type comments and "sorry, I'm trying not to step on your blanket" type comments. I can handle it, as long as everyone is playing well together.
It's when the occasional idiot comes along that I find I cannot regain control of myself and I ... snap.
We got to the rally at 7:30 in.the.morning. I am not a morning person. We were up at about 5:00 in.the.morning. We had left our little neck of the woods the day before at 6:30 in.the.morning. I was up that day, too, at 5:00 in.the.morning. Let me reiterate, I am not a morning person. I don't like not having enough sleep and I certainly don't like getting up before the sun has made an appearance.
So at 7:30 in.the.morning on the day of the rally, we plopped down our blanket and settled in for the day. All was well and we chatted some with those around us. A friendly group, I might add.
At about 1:00, several hours after we had gotten comfortable, we were watching the live show and along come two twenty somethings, cutting through the area. We assume they are on their way to somewhere else, say, maybe THEIR SEATS. Well, instead of moving on, they stop on the few blades of grass that were not covered with blankets and or people. Those blades of grass were directly in front of E, who was with us. She couldn't see a damn thing but the back of the twenty somethings - one dressed in the full head mask of an ape and his friend, who is dressed as a clown and has on a rainbow clown wig. E is looking my way like "what do I do now?" She finally leaned forward and said, "Excuse me, I have been here since 7:30 in.the.morning and now you have come along and stopped right in front of me and I can't see. Do you mind moving over?" Well, the idiots moved over, a whole 1/2 inch. She then looked at me with the "now what?" look. I could feel myself losing control. I knew it was happening and there was nothing that was going to stop it. I not so quietly said, "Tell the asshole to get out of your way." He then looked at me with his ape face. All I could see were his eyes and I am pretty sure he rolled them. It was at that moment, that very moment, that I felt a little jolt throughout my body. Neurons were firing and energy was buzzing through every cell of my being. And then I ... snapped.
"Yes, asshole, I AM TALKING TO YOU!" He acted all confused and innocent, he had a right to stand there, blah, blah, blah. I explained to him, if yelling and using lots of hand gestures is considered explaining, that we had been there since 7:30 in.the.morning and who did he think he was to just creep in on our space? He then explained to me that "we have been here since 7:30, too." That didn't sit well with me. My response, "Well then, wherever you were at 7:30 this morning, go back there because that is where your seats are. You weren't HERE at 7:30 this morning, so just keep moving." Clown face told me to chill out, which never goes over well when one is already out of control. I really don't remember all that was said after that. I do know my final words were, "Keep moving and go bother someone else." They stood their long enough to give off the vibe that they would leave when they were damn good and ready. They lasted just a couple of minutes before they moved on.
It felt good, ya know. I can't remember the last time I had words with someone. It didn't last long and it certainly wasn't a threatening situation, but I did call him an asshole to his face, and that my friends, I can't remember doing any time in the recent past. I must say, I was a little embarrassed to have reacted so vehemently. But once I recovered from the embarrassment, it did feel good. Some days I just feel like I've lost some of my spunk, but it certainly appeared at that moment. Once that little incident was over, I was good to go for the rest of the day and didn't lose control of myself again. Well, until a little incident in the Metro station with those 250,000 people, but that story is for another day.