She Kissed the Stage

It’s the end of an era for us. The past six years have seen high school productions too numerous to mention. I have built some of the oddest things in an effort to make these plays look professional on a shoestring budget: A revolving 24 foot by 36 foot structure that ripped the curtain and nearly fell into the front row, prison cells out of PVC, and a toilet stall that doubled as a judges bench when viewed from the other side. But now we are officially finished with high school theatre because our final actress has kissed the stage.

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Her name is Kendall but her little toddler friend called her Cookie and it stuck. Cookie amazes me. She is a fighter, she is introspective, beautiful, bright, creative, and fiercely loyal. Cookie is an extremely hard worker and I have no doubt she will be successful at whatever she chooses because she will either kick down the obstacles or figure out an ingenious way to ignite them. One of my fondest memories is when mom picked her up on first day of first grade. She bounded out of her classroom and suddenly realized something had gone terribly wrong. She grabbed the doorway to stop her momentum and cried, “Wait! They forgot to teach me how to read!” Read More

Can you Fart at Cotillion?

My two oldest are in the show, Bye-Bye Birdie and a rather uncomfortable situation presented itself on opening night. I took my dancer daughter and sat in the patron’s section, making sure to look down upon the common folk in general admission. I don’t get to be a snob in my town very often as most of the houses around here are twice the size of mine. But with two in the high school drama program, the dues required made it about the same as paying to be a patron, so we joined the club and now enjoy reserved seating.

Last night I learned it is not advisable to eat risky foods prior to a two hour show. I love spicy foods and had been able to savor two distinct ethnic cuisines on this particular day. I don’t know exactly which one was the aggressor, but one of them crossed the line, instigating a border war deep inside. It started midway through act 1 and I did everything possible to keep the war contained to one front. At some point during the second act, one of the combatants wanted more territory like Hitler invading Russia and tried to open an eastern theater. I shifted in my chair so many times the poor guy behind me probably thought I was dancing with the actors, even when there was no music. Somehow, I managed to keep the entire battle to myself.

After the final bows, Dancer and I congratulated her sisters and friends on a wonderful show, took pictures, and left. I explained the raging war of the past two hours to my thirteen year-old, who rolled her eyes and said, “Dad, you need to go to Cotillion.”

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I have only approximate knowledge of Cotillion. I looked it up and found out that it is classes designed to educate children on social skills, proper etiquette, manners and dance. As an adult, I am all for manners, especially for the boys who someday might want to date my daughters. The boy inside of me can think of nothing I would hate worse, though. I wonder what happens if you have to pass gas there. Do they have Cotillion police to escort you out immediately?

On a note related to boyhood, I got a fantastic review from a children’s lit blogger this week. Since I had sent the book in December, it came by surprise, precisely at a time when my spirits needed it. LINK.  In her review, she ponders this question:

This book captures the essence of boyhood very well. I had to laugh numerous times at how well the author knows what it means to be a young boy. He either has a very good memory, or he never grew up, I’m not sure which one.

I would like to thank Mrs. McMahon for taking the time to read Virge and write such a glowing review. I can put her question to rest in two ways. First, my memory is terrible except for completely irrelevant movie and song trivia. Second, take a look at the title of this post.