Wednesday, May 31, 2006

Bright Lights and Four Year Olds

At my very first ballet recital, I was not quite four years old. There were many of us, maybe 20 girls and one boy. We girls were dressed in aqua. His name was Jimmy. He was dressed in a white suit with white shirt, white suspenders, and a white Fedora. He looked four-year-old handsome.

The music we danced to was, “I Don’t Know Why I Love You Like I Do.” It was played by a real 30 piece orchestra. Jimmy would walk by us, and one-by-one, we would fall over with hands on our hearts. It was a bit . . . there are too many today words that don’t fit yesterday. It was sweet.

Of course, all I knew was that the costume was scratchy. I had to wear make-up. My hair was all curly. The lights were so bright in the theater. I couldn’t tell if there were any people there. I knew there were people there, because my dad had brought 27 of them, but I had no idea exactly where they were in all of that darkness out there.

A few weeks later I was at my cousin’s house. We were playing a game, re-enacting a popular television show called “I’ve Got a Secret.” It was my turn to be the one with the secret. I whispered it to my cousin. I said, “I was on television.”

I really believed it. I believed it for years.

I think it was the stage and the bright lights part.

−me strauss Letting me be


Mama Mouse said...

That's such a sweet memory!! I wish my first ballet recital had been that sweet ... but alas I had weak ankles and the first recital was my last!

I agree ... the words from yesterday don't always fit with today's. There was a time when we and the world were innocent .... that is true no longer.

ME Strauss said...

Hi Mama,
I'm sorry your anklss didn't cooperate with your plans to dance across the stage. Yeah, the world is not so innocent. It surely was innocent then where I was.

Melly said...

Oh, such a lovely thing to read first thing in the morning (well not so first, but it's definitely nicer than reading all the derpressing news).

It's funny and seet how we convince ourselves when we're small about things.

ME Strauss said...

Hi Melly,
How great to see you this morning.

It was the lights. It just made sense to me. I don't think I wanted to be on TV. I think I just thought that it had happened.


Jennifer said...

That's so sweet. Thanks for sharing!

My first memories of being on stage where those of wanting to run and hide--I didn't like being in front of people. They terrified me :D

ME Strauss said...

Hi jennifer,
Maybe if I saw the people, I would have had the same experience. But like my son I was always fascinated by lights when I was little. The sort of hypnotized me. That might have been my saving.

Atul said...

I've read that many of our childhood memories are inaccurate anyway. Believing something as a child that's not necessarily accurate is harmless and possibly healthy.

ME Strauss said...

Hi Atul!
I so remember this one.

They do make good stories.

Michael said...

Cool read...

Take Care

ME Strauss said...

Hi Michael,
Thanks for reading.
It's always great to see you.