Caussey's Corner

Wrong Seat at the Wrong Time! A Texan’s Most Embarrassing Moment

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I was nostalgic when my youngest son, Christopher, left for college. He left home with all the confidence that comes with being a college freshman. I remember well my college years. Christopher attends the same university in Abilene that I graduated from in 1971. In comparison, Christopher was more sophisticated and smarter than I ever was. My social skills back then were slightly above those of a mole, and my intelligence could be capsuled in a shirt pocket.

In college, academics were a challenge to me. Bible, algebra, and biology were taught at an elevation and rate that confused my foggy mind. Grades were not my major concern, but girls were. Finding a girl was not an issue, but knowing what to do and where to go certainly was. Back home in Seymour, Texas, the only event on the social menu was a ‘picture show’ at the drive-in movie. Now at Abilene Christian University, when I attempted to take a young lady to the drive-in, she respectfully informed me that “good girls” didn’t go to those places. That must have meant those other girls in Seymour that went to the drive-in with me weren’t good girls. If they were bad, I didn’t know it. Believe me, I tried determining if they were bad.

Wrong Seat at the Wrong Time! A Texan's Most Embarrassing Moment

Photo: Pixabay

At college, there was a beautiful young lady named Rachel, whose father was a preacher. I asked Rachel to the movies. She accepted, which only added to my personal apprehension. I was nervous because we were going to a downtown movie theater, and I was quite sure I had not acquired the social skills to get her seated, obtain refreshments, and then find my way back to my seat.

I arrived on time to pick Rachel up but got into the movie late because of difficulty negotiating through the ticket-purchasing window. It was dark inside when we got seated, and the theatre was terribly crowded. Rachel suggested we get some popcorn, so I excused myself to go to the concession area. Fearful of getting lost, I memorized my row and seat number. All the way down the steps I repeated row 14, seats 1 and 2, row 14, seats 1 and 2.

Two large Dr Peppers and a giant bag of popcorn later, I retraced my steps back to Rachel. I again repeated row 12, seats 2 and 3, row 12, seats 2 and 3. I settled in next to Rachel, and she snuggled up against me and started munching popcorn. This cuddling part inspired me so much that I put my arm around her. I was so involved in thinking about my next move that I paid little attention to the person to my right, drinking my Dr Pepper.

Then Rachel touched my knee with her hand, either as an act of encouragement or to wipe the butter off her fingers. I whispered in her ear how beautiful she was and how much I was enjoying the movie. However, I couldn’t help but notice that she appeared a little taller than when I left her. And her hair seemed to be stacked on her head as opposed to it lying across her shoulders earlier.

Finally, when the theatre became a little better lighted, I heard a voice over my right shoulder say, “Durhl, Durhl, you are in the wrong place!” Muffled laughter could be heard from the audience. “Durhl, Durhl, I’m back here.” I turned and looked, seeing Rachel two rows behind me. I was in the wrong seat. The lady I had been whispering to grabbed my bag of popcorn, as the lady to the right finished off the second Dr Pepper.

Wrong Seat at the Wrong Time! A Texan's Most Embarrassing Moment

Photo: Pixabay

For a moment I thought I might just drop and crawl back to Rachel. But realized with the luck I was having, I might end up in some strange lady’s lap. Summoning all my courage, I slowly got up from the wrong seat and sheepishly went back to Rachel and sat down. The laughter was no longer muffled. Every few minutes, when the scene on the screen became a little too emotionally tense, someone would whisper loudly, “Durhl, Durhl, I’m back here.” The audience would respond with pockets of laughter and more echoing of the previous statement. Once when there was a passionate love scene, and the hero was looking longingly at the fair maiden, someone yelled, “Durhl, Durhl, you are in the wrong place.”

This was followed by thunderous laughter. Off in the distance came chants of, “I’m back here, I’m back here.”

The last I heard of Rachel, she married a Methodist pastor and moved to Amarillo. There she had a couple of kids and sold Mary Kay Cosmetics part time. As for me, I’m still trying to find where there is a drive-in movie and a lady who can explain that bad girl part to me.