Intimidating.

I have spent the past two nights at the Kalamazoo Civic theatre, surrounded by forty-one talented women. We outnumber the non-actors ten-to-one (not including the designers). When you get us all around the tables, it’s really quite impressive. And the beautiful thing about community theatre?? Ninety percent of us are really, honestly there because we *want* to be.

Beautiful.

sweater2.jpg

Have I yet mentioned how much I love this sweater?? Because I do. I love it unreasonably and absolutely nothing is going to stop me finals are going to temporarily inconvenience me.

Unfortunately, in a group that large you do run into some exceptions. Please excuse my lapse in politeness, but the snotty and whiney-voiced woman to my left is going to drive me over the edge. I was refraining from judging her, despite her irritating tendency to mutter words under her breath when someone else makes a mistake in pronunciation. I thought it was rude for her to judge people based on their ability to work with text that they are scarcely acquainted with under stressful circumstances, but I had to admit to my own thought process.  While I was not irritated with the people making the mistakes, I was also mentally correcting them.  Good theatre etiquette states that actors do not correct or direct each other. You keep it to yourself or go to the director with no in-between. In any case, this was our first read-through of the show and everyone was messing up.  Including her!!

So, while I was unimpressed by her etiquette, I excused it and tried to like her anyway. After all, it’s not like she approached them directly.

The reason why I feel justified in making a judgment about this woman is that last night, she turned to me and said “I don’t think you should call yourself ‘Mouse’. I know you’ve had the name for a long time, but it’s like…well…*sounding scandalized* it’s like calling someone ‘horse‘, or something, and I just don’t think you should perpetuate that anymore. I mean, I understand, my name is *********, but no one calls me that!” etc…

Hey, guess what? It is absolutely no one’s business but mine to decide what I am to be called. I am not asking for anyone’s opinion. It is not an animal title to me, it is a name. I do not find it oppressive or demeaning, and yes I’ve given it a lot of thought. This woman turned to me, uninvited, and condescendingly told me that I do not have the right to be called by the only word that has ever felt like a name to me. Freedom of speech and all that, but was she not attacking *my* freedom of speech? I can’t excuse a statement under “freedom of speech” when that statement attempts to place itself as a higher-status statement. It was rude, baseless, and ageist. I don’t care how childish it appears from the outside perspective; I’m keeping my name. To all the people who can’t handle that? Tough cookies. I strongly recommend that they make their judgments in silence and avoid me so that we can all be happy.

I didn’t really say much to her. I tried to brush it off as a small concern, then avoided talking to her for the rest of the night. I was extremely polite. Her action was unacceptable, but that does not give me the right to reflect her lack of etiquette. I do consider it to be well within my rights to repeat this story anonymously, as she addressed me (rudely) in a very public place (for all to hear) in the first place. If anyone there could hear here, anyone here can hear her.

My boss at work does not have a problem, my professors do not have a problem, my family does not have a problem, but more than anything I do not have a problem. I’m sure that she’s really a wonderful person who simply has trouble politely applying her views in practical day-to-day situations, and I do think that it is completely valid for her to make a private judgment about my decision. She is entitled to her opinions and I respect that so long as she does not make it my business. She has no right to expect me to change for her, and I reserve the right to label her (in return for her actions) as rude, ageist, and stuffy. If she were to apologize, I would of course repeal those labels. I’m sorry if anyone is offended by that.

Vive la ‘Mouse’!!

8 Responses to “Intimidating.”

  1. kayak woman Says:

    I’d tell the old battle-axe she needs to get a life and go sit by someone else. Kee-reist!

  2. Sam Says:

    Agree: Kee-reist! After all, your Mousiness is Sacred.

  3. Dog Momster Says:

    I’ll admit it took me a tad of “paradigm-shift” to master “Mouse” instead of *****…but at the time I was making the mistaken utterances, I wasn’t living the day-to-day with the “Mouse” becoming concrete. It was like working on getting used to saying “Ay-may”, after having only heard for YEARS Jim (and Batty, too) refer to her as “Aim”…and flubbing with calling her “Aim…m..m..m..may”.

    Have to LOL about “Horse”, though. ‘Cuz guess what Jim called me everytime he need help lifting things? … Yes!! You are RIGHT! “Horse”!!! (So, Val became “Horse Junior” and Janet is still “Pengie”). Altho there were times that Val was more like “MULE!” (erk, I’m in trouble now!)

  4. Dog Momster Says:

    So. Just go TELL that Battle Axe that you have an Aunt Horse and that you are VERY INSULTED by her closed-minded attitude. Especially considering that she is in Kalamazoo of all places names!!!

  5. Dog Momster Says:

    *place names (sorry)

  6. gg Says:

    MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOU MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE MOUSE
    Okay with me (even if I do sometimes forget and use that other name).
    TMOTU

  7. Sneak Says:

    ¡Viva la Mouse!

  8. Valdemort Says:

    You’ve always been Mouse to me!

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