We went to Sarah’s performance of Into The Woods last weekend. That was gorgeous. CLICK HERE for some video magic.
During intermission the line for the women’s room was forever. I just zoomed in and out of the mens room. As I was standing outside by the concession I took a look at the ladies, some with pained expressions on their faces.
And I had a “Part Three Experience.”
Roll the clock back to 2005. Diane and I and my then pre-teen daughters were visiting with my parents in New York City. We were at the Marriott Marquis Hotel in Times Square, killing some time before going to see whatever show we signed up for.
The mens room was doing its usual thing. Quick in, quick out.
The ladies room was doing its thing too. A line outside the door.
My dad and I took a quick look…no one at the urinal, no one in the stalls.
We stood guard and invited the ladies in.
My mom, along with one kid and one other lady gratefully took us up on the offer.
Within a minute one guy walked over to use the facilities. We good naturedly told him what was going on.
He didn’t like it. In another time he might have made more of an issue over it. But he was outnumbered. And I think he would have felt silly fighting over not letting the ladies doing what they had to. He moved on.
Jump two years ahead to 2007. My friend Linda and I coming out of an Abraham-Hicks Art of Allowing workshop in Boston. Everyone’s in a good mood. We just had a peak experience with Esther, Jerry and Abraham.
And the usual line up at the restrooms before everyone hit the road.
And the usual situation. Empty mens room, line outside the door for the ladies.
This time it was all me. I made sure it was empty and stood guard outside while grateful women took care of business.
One guy came over to use the mens room. I explained the situation. He laughed and patiently waited his turn. He was in just as good a mood as the rest of us, having had six hours of profound personal development poured into him.
Five minutes later, I had made a few friends for life. My friend Linda (who was one of the grateful women) and I headed back home.
Jump forward to January 2014. Same scenario. Intermission at Sarah’s slow. The mens room is clear. The ladies, as usual has distressed looking women lined up around the corner.
This is a little different. Not only do they have to go, but intermission is going to be over soon.
I spring into action, inviting the ladies to do what they gotta do. I get the same expressions of gratitude.
A man comes over, getting ready to walk in. I good humoredly tell him the situation. He starts to get his man thing on.
“Well, what if there’s an emergency?”
The main difference between then and now is my confidence. The last few years have been a great exercise in real personal development. I’m not worried about getting his approval. And I’m not backing down from him either.
I locked his eye and hold it. “Well, what if one of them is having an emergency?”
He walks away without a word. Within three minutes the mens room is clear and he silently walks in.
Rules. They serve us well. Until they stop serving us.
Don’t be afraid to break some of the stupid ones.
And grow into the confidence that lets you do what’s right…even when it’s uncomfortable.
Your Turn! Ever have this kind of experience, either as the man or the woman? Ever see anyone get really grateful, or really angry? Share it here in the comment section.