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Pretty good obs at rehearsal


starpollen

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So we're at rehearsal and the director is giving notes. Everyone is sitting in a semi-circle in the orchestra pit and I'm further back in the house with one of the volunteers. I probably missed the first couple of sneezes because the director is very animated and makes people laugh a lot when he gives notes, but then my attention was drawn to one of the running crew members. Slender young man with brown hair - if it were still the 90s he'd be classified as "grunge" - having himself a right-good allergy attack. Possibly due to the fact that I know there is mold in the building. Or the high pollen count and the RIDICULOUS humidity. Maybe even dust - theatres are incredibly dusty.

Anyway.

His sneezes were spaced out anywhere from 10 seconds to a full minute. Nice juicy "hh... -BTSSCht!" sounds. He always covered - mostly cupped one hand around his mouth and nose but a couple of times used the crook of his arm when he hit the rare double. "hah!-Bp'SSCH-t! hh-TSCCHHt!" There was that one annoying person in the cast who felt compelled to bless him EVERY TIME. And you could see him getting more and more self conscious as they just kept coming. The more he sneezed, the more he tried NOT to sneeze.

And that's what really had me staring. I could SEE him try to fight them off: he'd stare straight ahead, lips barely mouthing something that I couldn't make out at all but figured it was probably a "don't sneeze don't sneeze no no no" chant, shoulders beginning to drag in more and more air despite his best efforts. And THEN he clenched his fist and beat it against his knee, almost like he was trying to distract himself by punching his leg so as not to give in to his nose. But it didn't work. His jaw would inevitably drop, eyes would droop closed, and he'd linger frozen for a long second before snapping in half with another wet "ah-PTSCCHtt!" He'd take his palm and rub his itchy nose upward in the classic 'allergic salute,' blink and try to pretend that nothing happened. Only to repeat the pattern seconds later. Sneeze after sneeze after sneeze... I counted 16 before he finally got up and picked his way through the bodies heading for the aisle, and I could see the stare-straight-ahead-breathing-through-the-mouth-trying-to-stave-off-the-sneeze expression. He got out of the crowd and SPRINTED for the door, hand cupped over his mouth and nose. I couldn't see or hear after that because the director made everyone laugh again, but my imagination filled in one of two scenarios:

A) He battles valiantly - practically holding his breath as his nose tickles and tingles and burns, fighting not to take that last hitch of breath that will bring on the sneeze - and only barely manages to get to the lobby before bending in half, hands on his knees, exploding with several desperate, wet sneezes that he can finally let go in privacy, nearly groaning in relief.

or

:) He doesn't make it to the doors before sneezing - again - hearing everyone laugh behind him. He gets to the lobby and sprays another openly in the air, eyes blinking as he rubs his tickly nostrils harshly before shutting himself in a bathroom stall to try to blow the allergens out of his nose and stop the fit.

Maybe he did both, who knows. He came back in about 10 minutes later, sniffling thickly and still rubbing upward at his nose in the 'allergic salute' 3 or 4 more times with a scowl of frustration. Even though his expression got blank a couple of times and I thought I might get lucky... there was no more sneezing.

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So we're at rehearsal and the director is giving notes. Everyone is sitting in a semi-circle in the orchestra pit and I'm further back in the house with one of the volunteers. I probably missed the first couple of sneezes because the director is very animated and makes people laugh a lot when he gives notes, but then my attention was drawn to one of the running crew members. Slender young man with brown hair - if it were still the 90s he'd be classified as "grunge" - having himself a right-good allergy attack. Possibly due to the fact that I know there is mold in the building. Or the high pollen count and the RIDICULOUS humidity. Maybe even dust - theatres are incredibly dusty.

Anyway.

His sneezes were spaced out anywhere from 10 seconds to a full minute. Nice juicy "hh... -BTSSCht!" sounds. He always covered - mostly cupped one hand around his mouth and nose but a couple of times used the crook of his arm when he hit the rare double. "hah!-Bp'SSCH-t! hh-TSCCHHt!" There was that one annoying person in the cast who felt compelled to bless him EVERY TIME. And you could see him getting more and more self conscious as they just kept coming. The more he sneezed, the more he tried NOT to sneeze.

And that's what really had me staring. I could SEE him try to fight them off: he'd stare straight ahead, lips barely mouthing something that I couldn't make out at all but figured it was probably a "don't sneeze don't sneeze no no no" chant, shoulders beginning to drag in more and more air despite his best efforts. And THEN he clenched his fist and beat it against his knee, almost like he was trying to distract himself by punching his leg so as not to give in to his nose. But it didn't work. His jaw would inevitably drop, eyes would droop closed, and he'd linger frozen for a long second before snapping in half with another wet "ah-PTSCCHtt!" He'd take his palm and rub his itchy nose upward in the classic 'allergic salute,' blink and try to pretend that nothing happened. Only to repeat the pattern seconds later. Sneeze after sneeze after sneeze... I counted 16 before he finally got up and picked his way through the bodies heading for the aisle, and I could see the stare-straight-ahead-breathing-through-the-mouth-trying-to-stave-off-the-sneeze expression. He got out of the crowd and SPRINTED for the door, hand cupped over his mouth and nose. I couldn't see or hear after that because the director made everyone laugh again, but my imagination filled in one of two scenarios:

A) He battles valiantly - practically holding his breath as his nose tickles and tingles and burns, fighting not to take that last hitch of breath that will bring on the sneeze - and only barely manages to get to the lobby before bending in half, hands on his knees, exploding with several desperate, wet sneezes that he can finally let go in privacy, nearly groaning in relief.

or

:) He doesn't make it to the doors before sneezing - again - hearing everyone laugh behind him. He gets to the lobby and sprays another openly in the air, eyes blinking as he rubs his tickly nostrils harshly before shutting himself in a bathroom stall to try to blow the allergens out of his nose and stop the fit.

Maybe he did both, who knows. He came back in about 10 minutes later, sniffling thickly and still rubbing upward at his nose in the 'allergic salute' 3 or 4 more times with a scowl of frustration. Even though his expression got blank a couple of times and I thought I might get lucky... there was no more sneezing.

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Sorry, I just quoted you but I forgot to write anything and now I can't change it cause I'm still new here. *sigh*

Anyway, great obs. I love boys who fight their sneezes even though they know they'll lose no matter what they do. SO CUTE :)

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Excellent obs!

I probably wouldn't even be able to focus on rehearsing after all of that LOL

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*Swoons and melts* Thank you for using your wonderful way with words to oh so expertly describe this onservation! Super gorgeous!! :lol: I think I'm going to go and combust now. :lol:

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As a fellow thespian (a crew person!), I too know the wonders of a dusty, moldy theatre! :) And I get the added bonus of sawdust-filled shops with sneezy carpenters!

Thanks for the delicious obs :)

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