It was pretty gratifying to read that the Charlie Sheen show in Detroit was such a mess that the people who bought tickets booed and demanded refunds. You buy tickets to a shitshow, what do you expect? I was actually disappointed to read that the show was retooled and improved for Chicago, because the old lady in me wanted everyone who bought a ticket to show to feel let down and angry, having been forced to Learn a Lesson: that enjoying something terrible and sad, ironically or not, will never lead to real pleasure.
My old-ladyness has been in full force lately. Saturday I actually yelled at two separate people for pee-and-poo related incidents, first, at a guy peeing in our alley and second for a guy who was going to walk on by after letting his dog crap in our lawn. Someday I will probably be murdered for asking people to not be rude jerks, but at least I was fighting the good fight.
But before that, I was feeling crabby, on the Sheen-related issue, about people getting pleasure from other people being awful. It started when I read this post on Gawker about this famous internet lady who got arrested after starting a fight at Burger King. I watched the video, and could only think old lady like thoughts, like, Somebody's going to have to clean all that up and She's demeaning herself so badly and Why are people cheering? and What a shitty-looking Burger King. This was somewhat similar when I watched this fight on a subway train that started when a lady was irritated by someone's eating on the train and decided to speak up, not-very-politely about it and things disintegrated from there, with predictable results. All I felt as I watched it was uncomfortable--the unspoken social contract of "I won't mess with you, you won't mess with me, we won't interrupt everyone else's lives with our conflict" was broken. Nobody looked good. It wasn't funny. The whole thing had a stink of racial tension about it. And meanwhile, someone was taping it, thinking, "People are going to want to watch these two ladies lose it on an old dirty train underground." People taping these incidents is what I think bothers me most of all--that they assume others will want to watch this fight, and they're correct. Man.
Anyway, the lesson I've learned is that I just need to stay away when things come my way with the message "You're going to love this Falling Down moment! It's hilarious the way these people lose their dignity and self-control!" because it just makes my old-ladyness come out, and I need to save that for yelling at my inevitable murderer--which will probably be taped, now, in the ultimate irony.