My beautiful, funny husband has NEVER seen West Side Story. He also has never been to a play or anything that has to do with theater so when Our Married Friend brought up going to such an event I jumped right on it so that he could have the experience. We went to see West Side Story at the Atlanta Lyric Theater, also known as Cobb Civic Center. Just to let you know, Lenny and I are the talk through a movie type of couple. I secretly LOVE this about him.
I gave him NO backstory or synopsis on the storyline so he had no clue what he was walking in to. In the process of him watching this play I hear him say things like “that was cool” “I knew it!” “ooooh she’s so in trouble” and then I hear him gasp and grab my hand. This is a guy that will fight if he has to whether it is right or wrong. He waits silently at my back always ready to jump to my defense. My husband is a sensitive and emotional man with me. Knowing all of that it did surprise me to find that when he heard the words ‘Spik’ and ‘PR Trash’ he immediately was concerned about my feelings. I was a little amused because this was one of my favorite movies. I knew what it entailed. In fact, it was one of the movies my mom ordered me to watch because I came home crying after being called a wetback and immigrant trash.
For me seeing West Side Story live was nostalgic. It filled me with pride for my culture and the struggle that we still face as a country and as a people. For him it was a bit of an exaggerated peak into a very turbulent history. He became alive with questions and concerns. He wanted to know how many times I came across such prejudice as a child and if I still saw much of that prejudice today. We agreed that we both wanted to see another play and definitely wanted to see the nutcracker ballet. This past Saturday I feel like we started to learn a different facet to each other. He learned that even though I don’t speak about discrimination and racism, I am very well acquainted with both. My passion for equality doesn’t come from an empty place. It comes from a place deep down that I chose not to let other people to. I learned that he is much more open to mundane old people things that I had thought. We continually expose each other to things that aren’t the “norm” for each other.
I am really glad that we had the chance to go to this play and even more glad that he didn’t find it incredibly boring. It could have been potentially disastrous if he hated it.