Think Twice: Wristbands

Think Twice: Wristbands

Jana Isern, Staff Writer

Should people be given the benefit of the doubt?

Is being nice an opening for others to take complete advantage of you?

I had my dance recital Monday and there was a little bit of commotion in terms of getting into the theater. Basically, my brother, who is eight years old, also dances and let’s just say that he’s the type of person who has their head in the clouds all the time. He forgets everything and is constantly “imagining” as he calls it. 

It’s a little concerning to be honest. 

The show was split into multiple days and Monday was our show day. He danced on the first show which was at 5 p.m. and I danced in the late show at 7 p.m. The early show required green wristbands to get in, and the late show required orange wristbands. 

My brother forgot the green wristbands for my parents, and I didn’t realize that they even existed, so I convinced my mom that we only needed the orange wristbands as we were driving to the theater in a rush because we were already late. As always. 

Anyway, we get there and obviously we’re wearing the wrong wristbands. We were wearing the orange wristbands. I genuinely thought that it would be fine. I mean you would have to be a complete stick in the mud to not let a family into a show because they’re wearing the wrong wristbands when they clearly have a child dancing in the show. 

I was wrong. It turns out there are a lot of uptight stick in the muds in this world. 

We get to the door and this man, a parent of a dancer, is guarding the door like there’s a golden treasure inside the theater, looking at us like we were robbers trying to steal precious jewels. 

He says the infamous line, “I was told not to accept anyone without a green band.” 


Also very annoying because we were asking to enter a show performed by a local dancing school with kids as dancers. The only audience was parents. It’s a dance show, not a secret intelligence operation discussing how to create a subspecies of humans or maybe robots. I don’t know, I can’t keep up anymore. But seriously, have some perspective please. 

Luckily, the dance director’s mother was nearby and she knows us pretty well, so we told her how we had accidentally mixed up the wristbands and she helped us figure it out with the man/bodyguard of gold. Everything worked out fine and we went into the theater and watched my brother. He was amazing by the way. Best dancer in the show! 

But as we were going in to find our seats the man said, “I’m sorry, but there has to be someone in the world saying no politely.” 

And that made me think….

Is he right? I mean should we say no to those who need the benefit of the doubt or who need help fixing a mistake, even if they’re strangers. Because I can see both cases. In our instance, we were genuinely in a mix-up. We were in no way trying to wrangle extra tickets and smuggle them to others. But in other cases, this is the typical situation where the overly nice person gets tricked and taken advantage of. 

In an ideal world I would say be nice, and always give people the benefit of the doubt, but this is not an ideal world in any way. There are nice and genuine people out there, but how do you differentiate them from those who are just so good at manipulating anyone with a kind soul? 

Maybe if you’re really good at lying cues, you can pick out the lies you’re being told. Or my rule of thumb has always been: If they don’t blink in 30 seconds they’re a psychopath. Trust me on that. 

It’s hard. I don’t know what I would’ve done in that situation. At that moment, I really really disliked that man, I thought he was being melodramatic and exaggerating the importance of the show. I still do. 

But he had a point. Someone has to say no. 

I just don’t know if I could be that person.