I just came back from Lucy's Winter Concert at school. Jay couldn't be there because he had to work so I ended up sitting between Monty and a Cell Phone Dad. Cell Phone Dad took one picture of his kid and then played with his phone through the whole program, barely even looking forward. I wanted to elbow him.
I know these things aren't the most interesting way to spend an evening. We're sitting on folding chairs in the gymatorium. It's 1000 degrees. The audience is filled with assholes whom I wouldn't hang out with in any other instance. Babies are screaming. Some woman behind me is barking about how she can't get her camera to work. From where I'm sitting I could barely see my kid. Personally, I couldn't wait to get home and pour some wine and get into my disgusting yet comfy nighttime sweat pants, but my daughter and her friends are SO THRILLED and they (and their teachers) have put so much work into this night.
So I play the game. I clap after every song. I try to make eye contact with my daughter and her friends. I'm what my daughter's teacher refers to as 'an active listener.'
And it's worth it.
On the walk home we ran into my daughter's friend and he looked at me and excitedly said, "I saw you out in the audience looking at me!" That's right, I was looking at you! I couldn't understand a word you said because the audio in the gymatorium is not that good, but I was right there with you.
It made me think about Cell Phone Dad's kid, who looked out into the audience and saw the top of their dad's head.
Next time I'm elbowing Cell Phone Dad.