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Rude Behavior Mars Game Experience

Each Thanksgiving I look forward to attending the Longmeadow High School (LHS) vs. East Longmeadow High School (ELHS) football game. It is a wonderful time to see my neighbors, LHS alumni, my children and their friends all out to support our town. This year started out as many other Thanksgivings, but unfortunately, I was met with instances of indifference and rudeness that should not pass without comment. When I arrived, I noticed the Longmeadow pep band was sitting beside the bleachers in low seats where they could not possibly view the game. I found this to be very curious, as the band always sits in the bleachers, affording them the opportunity to see the game and respond with a musical selection appropriate to what is happening on the field. Additionally, they can be heard better from the bleachers. I later found out that spectators who arrived at the game very early refused to let the pep band be seated in their customary place. I understand that people come to the games to watch their children, but when did the desires of few negate the needs of the group? I thought adults were supposed to set an example. How naive am I? I was also the direct recipient of a display of rudeness. Since there are few bleacher seats for the visiting team, I was standing by the edge of the football field with my niece. Since both of us are short, we craned our necks and peered between people to watch the game. At one point the man standing in front of us left to get coffee and my niece moved up to the rope to get an unobstructed view. When the man returned about 10 minutes later, he told my niece to move, that he had been in that spot and had only left to get coffee. When I politely commented that my niece now could not see the game he responded with a sarcastic, "do you want me to put her on my shoulders?" I always let the people who are shorter than I am stand in front of me in this type of situation. While I would have offered to let a person stand in front of me as soon as I noticed they couldn't see, this man not only didn't do that, he felt entitled to his spot even after he had left it! Have people really gotten this selfish and rude in general or was I just experiencing a bad day? I do my best to live by the golden rule, "treat others as you would like to be treated" and have taught my children to do the same. How can we expect to raise good citizens, when our children witness and/or are the recipients of such self-centered and entitled behavior? As we enter this holiday season, I would ask that people pause and reflect regarding their behavior toward others. Try to be thoughtful and maybe even do an unsolicited good deed or two. Andrea Brinnel Longmeadow
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