On Tuesday evening, the second day of Shavuos, immediately after mincha, everyone washed for hamotzie and sat down in their places in preparation for the arrival of the Rebbe and the commencement of the Shavuos farbrengen.

Shortly before the Rebbe entered the hall, the usual announcements were made regarding the procedure for “kos shel brocha” which would commence later at the end of the farbrengen: “Seder (orderliness) must be maintained at all times,” they announced. “There should be no pushing. We are to behave like civilized human beings. Only one queue should be formed and this should ascend the platform by the far right-hand stairway and continue down the length of the dais, thus filing past the Rebbe in an orderly fashion.” The Rebbe would, en passant, fill each person’s cup with wine from his silver becher (cup) that he had led the bentching with and made havdalah over. (As usual, this earnest announcement was utterly ignored by most people, including by the very individuals who were designated to oversee that everything ran smoothly. More about this later.)