I come from a family of drinkers, so I shouldn’t have been surprised when they started ordering round after round of drinks during our pre-opera brunch date this past weekend. I figured there would be a few glasses of white wine thrown around (and hopefully a few actual consumed) but I was not anticipating the brunch would go bottomless. Note: I said the brunch went bottomless, not me. Anyway, over an hour later, God knows how many drinks, two separate falls on the way to the Bloody Mary bar (by two separate members of my family, one of whom was me), and little meaningful conversation, I was ready for bed and you can imagine my disappointment when we went to the opera instead.
Fortunately, my seat had a headrest, the opera house was dark, and the story put me right to sleep. The incessant and in-no-way-pleasing-to-the-senses wailing was a bit distracting at times but fortunately the damage I inflicted on the bottomless mimosa deal helped drown that out. Unfortunately, the shoulder my head ultimately landed on was not one belonging to my family. In fact, I didn’t have time to ask for a name between his complimentary nudge to the leg and my involuntary clap and “bravo!” scream sequence, although I’m sure he would have just as well answered to ‘Not Impressed’ like the rest of my family at that moment.
You could say I have somewhat of a history doing this sort of thing when woken up abruptly. In graduate school I was fairly well-known for my propensity to immediately raise my hand upon being woken up in class by the person sitting next to me. It became something of an activity for keeping the rest of the class awake, and certainly contributed to the reputation I developed for being an absolute idiot. All I have to say is that it is harder than you would think to spontaneously generate a question relevant to a conversation on which you have completely missed out.
So the fact that I would immediately clap and yell upon being woken up at the opera didn’t surprise me, although it seemed to have caught the rest of the opera house off guard. Don’t get me wrong, clapping at the opera is apparently acceptable but I think only at certain periods of time, one of those not being in the middle of Romeo and Juliette’s hushed encounter in the garden that, to me at least, looked and sounded like two male cats trying to mate. I learned exactly how inappropriate my interruption was thanks to an army of silver foxes who turned around to silently protest my outburst, and Not Impressed to my left who was violent waving his hands in my direction. Thinking quickly from my vantage point underneath this very big bus I had been thrown under, I did what came naturally and turned around to accost the people behind me. When in Rome!
Fortunately for everyone, including myself, relief was had in the opera house after I went to the restroom for the third time in one act and the merciful event staff declined to grant me entrance back in.
All in a day’s work.