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new york national review musical management criminal charges

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#1 Hum

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Posted 19 May 2013 - 22:29

Annoying cellphone users beware: Don't mess with Kevin Williamson.

The National Review writer is being hailed on the Web as a mini-hero after he exacted vengeance on an annoying theatergoer who wouldn't stop using her cellphone during a live performance.

His final act: He snatched the phone from the theatergoer's hands and threw it across the theater.

"Theater Night: Vigilantes 1, Vulgarians 0," Williamson wrote in a National Review column the day after the incident.

Williamson was in attendance at Tuesday night's performance of "Natasha, Pierre, and the Great Comet of 1812," a critically acclaimed, cabaret-style musical loosely based on a section of Leo Tolstoy's "War and Peace." The play is performed inside a huge carnival tent erected next to the Standard High Line, a luxury boutique hotel in the heart of downtown Manhattan's trendy meatpacking district. Theatergoers sit at tables clustered throughout the room.

Williamson said he was thoroughly enjoying the play but was bothered by some members of the audience sitting near him who insisted on talking and using their cellphones during the performance.

According to Williamson:

"It was bad enough that I seriously considered leaving during the intermission, something I’ve not done before. The main offenders were two parties of women of a certain age, the sad sort with too much makeup and too-high heels, and insufficient attention span for following a two-hour musical."

He said his date spoke with theater management during intermission, but the situation wasn't remedied when the play resumed:

"The lady seated to my immediate right (very close quarters on bench seating) was fairly insistent about using her phone. I asked her to turn it off. She answered: 'So don’t look.' I asked her whether I had missed something during the very pointed announcements to please turn off your phones, perhaps a special exemption granted for her. She suggested that I should mind my own business."

That got Williamson's blood boiling. He said he proceeded to use "my famously feline agility" to ###### the phone from the woman's hands and toss it across the room, "where it would do no more damage."

Williamson said the woman slapped him before storming off to notify management.

Williamson told Gothamist the show's security director confronted him and said the woman was talking about pursuing criminal charges.

"He did try to physically keep me in, and was standing in the door blocking me, telling me I couldn't leave. I inquired as to whether he was a police officer and I was under arrest, and since I wasn't, I left," Williamson told Gothamist.

Asked if the woman's phone was damaged, Williamson said, "It had to be; I threw it a pretty good distance."

Williamson's antics earned him praise from several people across the Web.

Gothamist, on its website, awarded him a "Certificate of Commendation" for "exemplary protection of theaters from annoying attendants."

Daily Beast blogger Justin Green chimed in: "I wish everyone reacted to impolite cell phone usage like Kevin Williamson."

On Twitter, one man remarked: "This man did what the rest of us mere mortals only dream of."

"There's no other way for me to say this: I love you. You are my hero," another tweeted. :D

Not everyone was impressed:

"@KevinNR sounds like a douche. He expects commendations for his childish behavior, too. And he is receiving praise," one person tweeted.

Williamson took all the praise in stride, writing:

"In a civilized world, I would have received a commendation of some sort. To the theater-going public of New York — nay, the world — I say: "You’re welcome."

source


#2 vetDirtyLarry

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Posted 19 May 2013 - 22:35

Give this man the Noble Peace Prize.

#3 OP Hum

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Posted 19 May 2013 - 22:42

Police and security should be fully authorized to confiscate cell phones being inappropriately used. :)

#4 +timster

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Posted 19 May 2013 - 22:51

he's lucky the phone didn't hit anyone in the head after he threw it wrecklessly

#5 Cheatyface

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Posted 19 May 2013 - 22:57

he's lucky the phone didn't hit anyone in the head after he threw it wrecklessly


Do you know if he threw it 'recklessly'? Or are you assuming he didn't look first? One should take care with assumptions.

#6 +timster

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Posted 19 May 2013 - 22:59

Do you know if he threw it 'recklessly'? Or are you assuming he didn't look first? One should take care with assumptions.

throwing anything in a crowded location is pretty wreckless

#7 OP Hum

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Posted 19 May 2013 - 23:05

^ Including your voice. ;)

#8 Cheatyface

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Posted 19 May 2013 - 23:09

throwing anything in a crowded location is pretty wreckless


So, just assuming then. Gotcha.

Williamson should get a medal from the mayor for this. Doesn't look like the woman ever filed charges. Probably she knows she was in the wrong and doesn't want anyone to know who she is to ridicule her, now that the whole world knows what happened. Justice done right.

#9 +Aheer.R.S.

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Posted 19 May 2013 - 23:23

Police and security should be fully authorized to confiscate cell phones being inappropriately used. :)

Though a little extreme, I do sort of agree.

How hard is it to turn off your phone? If you're a person on call in some medical, or other equally important role, then ok, but in the UK that's not really frowned upon if the said person leaves upon recieving the call (for all I know, there was an emergency and the user has been asked to come into work on their day off) <-- Example only

The general population that do not have those types of commitments should turn off their devices, or at least put them on silent and silent text, (just to meet halfway is nothing else)

#10 TheExperiment

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Posted 19 May 2013 - 23:26

The general population that do not have those types of commitments should turn off their devices, or at least put them on silent and silent text, (just to meet halfway is nothing else)

or have them thrown across the room. I'm all for that!

#11 +astropheed

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Posted 19 May 2013 - 23:26

I don't condone such acts of vigilance in day to day life, but, I don't condone such acts of ignorance moreso.

I only dream of being able to do this to an unsuspecting moron. So many times in the cinemas people reach for their phones and I wonder two things: 1) Why did you go to the theater? and 2) How can you be so inconsiderate?

This man deserves a medal.

Edit: a third thing usually strikes my mind come to think of it, but I've yet to think of a way to get away with savage beating. Damn primitive instincts... :(

#12 +SOOPRcow

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Posted 19 May 2013 - 23:34

Honestly, I think she should press charges. Sure she was being a jerk and she should've been kicked the hell out by the staff but he was not only a jerk, he was a physically violent jerk.

#13 +astropheed

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Posted 19 May 2013 - 23:40

Honestly, I think she should press charges. Sure she was being a jerk and she should've been kicked the hell out by the staff but he was not only a jerk, he was a physically violent jerk.


You're right. Absolutely. But....
We continually reinforce the idea that it's ok to be this ignorant. After-all any ramifications, which in reality could only be of physical interaction to merit any lawful consideration, would be scrutinized and punished. And to which the victor of the spoils is that of the original ignorance.

I'm sorry but every once in a while it should be acceptable to put ignorance in its place with a good old fashioned wake-up call. I don't think there needs to be any enforcement involved in this case. It's open-and-shut imho. Buy a new phone and stop being a little wanktard.

#14 Gerowen

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Posted 19 May 2013 - 23:56

he's lucky the phone didn't hit anyone in the head after he threw it wrecklessly


And if it had? Would that have been against some kind of law? Are we that much of a pacifist nation that somebody would have complained if they'd been smacked by a flying cell phone, instead of just handling it between themselves outside the theater?

Honestly, I think she should press charges. Sure she was being a jerk and she should've been kicked the hell out by the staff but he was not only a jerk, he was a physically violent jerk.


I think he was probably the only reasonable and sane person there, and some people just don't "get it" unless you get physical with them. He tried to be diplomatic. He approached the resident security team, he tried speaking to her about it, and none of those avenues resolved the problem. It's about like the difference between spanking your kids and giving them a "time out". Some kids just don't get it unless you give them a good spanking once and a while. Apparently this girl didn't get enough of them as a child.

#15 Growled

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Posted 20 May 2013 - 02:20

I've felt like doing the same thing many times. Kudos to him.



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