Friday, July 10, 2009

a frilly childhood tale

i haven't really changed much in the past 30 or so years.

although i have gotten over my fear of clouds and cotton, proven to myself that i can learn a sport or two, learned not to believe everything i see and learned how to eat eggplant and spinach, everything else is pretty much the same. i still don't love sea creatures, still can't eat kare-kare, my gums are still the size of a football field (how colonial), my voice is still squeaky and i can still make a fool out of myself. sometimes, quite inadvertently.

cue flashback.

at the end of my kindergarten school year, each class had to present a choreographed dance number, complete with costumes and performed on a grand (i was small – everything was grand) stage with the impressive, heavy, manually operated curtains that all grand stages tend to have.

i remember our costumes distinctly. mine was a blue polka-dotted dress full of ruffles and layers, befitting some european (or was it?) folk song that i can't seem to find online.

it went something like ...

"[name of some lady] with flowers in her hair
[something i can't remember] [something that rhymes with 'hair']
[something else that ends just before the chorus]

tra la la la yes
tra la la la no
tra la la la yes
because i love you so

riiiight. deep stuff.

so anyway, all of us little froo-froo girls had to dance behind and beside the center of our presentation, a classmate who was given a costume a bit more froo-frooey than ours (presumably because she looked european?). we were instructed to tra-la-la-la around her and, at the end of the song, hold a pose that was somewhere between a curtsy and broadway-ish, hands-extended-to-the-side kindova thang but dramatically leaning toward our protagonist. in effect, it was to convey the general idea of 'presenting! queen froo-froo! with flowers in her hair!'

after the music stopped, the curtains would close and hide the mess that was our kindergarten class presentation.

during one of the last rehearsals, i was so engrossed in my ruffles and dancing that i didn't notice that i was too near the edge of the stage. when the curtains closed, i was IN FRONT of them. that day, i knew how it felt to have my pride forcefully drawn out of my soul and whipped across the floor like a dirty mop. i was left standing alone, holding a pose that said, 'presenting! the curtains!'

i don't remember how i found my way back behind the curtains but i remember reaching target heart rate. if i knew what that was back then.

for the next rehearsal (it could've been the final show, i couldn't care less), i made a million mental post-its for me to remember to STAY BEHIND the curtains. i was successful and, it must be said, very proud of myself for learning from my mistakes. 'this is the stuff of HEROES,' i idiotically thought.

of course it didn't really end all that well. for the final pose, i WAS at the right spot, except i was facing the other direction, completely opposite where i was supposed to look. my final pose said, simply, 'presenting! my classmate! who looks like she's presenting me!'

yey me.

many (MANY) years have passed and i'm still that extra-careful child who tries her darnednest to learn from her mistakes. maybe with fewer ruffles though.

the truth is we've all grown a lot since kindergarten, and if there's anything i want to teach my nephew and niece, it's that [something deep and witty to end this blog entry].


EVD said...

It's that 'you better learn to laugh at yourself sometimes.'

estikoy said...

...that theater is the devil?