Turns out I can dance if I want to. Or not.

I wore this to school last week.

Well, not actually wore it. More like changed into it while my kids were innocently at an assembly. They didn't even see it coming. Not that they knew what to look for, but, well, whatever, you get the point or at least you will get the point. This makes no sense. Kind of like my life. You know what? Just keep reading.

My elementary school has a Talent Show. Holla. It's exactly as you're picturing it. Dance routines. Sweet little songs. Piano. Guitar. There was even a poetry reading and a comedy act this year. You've got spirit, we've got talent. Yes, we do. The acts are good. For reals. These kids are legit. They take their talent showing very seriously at this school.

I also take talent showing very seriously. I've got a lot of talents people. Lots. I sing a bomb version of "The More We Get Together". I tickle the ivories to a mean "Mary Had a Little Lamb". And no one can do a dramatic reading of Green Eggs and Ham like Mrs. Allison. Don't be jealous.

Too bad the talent show is for The Kids.
Or it's for twenty-something teachers who were born for the stage.

When the PTSA said Talent Show auditions, I swear they said "Susie, what would you like to preform for your 1minute 20 seconds of spotlight?". Sigh. Seriously, best parts about teaching: 1. I can legally cut in line with little recourse. 2. I get to use adult scissors. 3. I can participate in the talent show without auditioning.

Of course, I wasn't about to go at this alone. I'm new at this school and to pull off an act at the Talent Show without looking like that girl requires Education Street Cred. It's a magical gift you earn after teaching a few years at the same school. I need about 2 years to build it. I've been there 8 months. I needed more players.

Unfortunately, my school bestie is Charlotte and we're both new. She couldn't help me with the Street Cred part -- only the "I'll do it, if you do it" part. Enter Jeffrey and Tessa. They have 6 years of Street Cred. Perfect. They could make us seem legit.

Plus Jeffrey is a man diva who regularly performs on stage and knows a wide range of choreographed routines. He was made for this. This is his true calling. Jeffrey is wonderful and a total Talent Show hijacker. He immediately had grand ideas for our show. But Jeff had to learn the hard way that though I have many talents, dancing isn't one of them. He said we could make it work. So much for my Talent Show ego.

Jeff taught us choreography. We danced after school. During lunch. Whenever kids were at recess and we had a CD player near by. Jeffrey is a natural performer. Tessa can fake it well. Charlotte and I are sad dancers. Boo hoo sad.

We practiced our tooshies off. I was very serious about My Art. I took My Dance personally. I threw myself into this creative outlet, dressed in a black tank and black leggings, and then cried in the master bathroom because I was that bad. Dancing in a mirror was not a good look for me. Chuck tried to be supportive. To help in any way his two-left feet could. "No", I told him in tears. "You can't see it. And you can't come watch." "Fine," he said, "I'll come to the show, but I'll close my eyes when you go on stage."

Chuck majored in Flight Technology and Aircraft Systems Management. He minored in Susie Meltdowns.

10 days we practiced. It may seem obsessive. Too much for a "joke". Or it was that I needed that long to understand the basics of choreography and the way bodies move. I learned a lot about my changing self. It was very enlightening.

We also kept it hush, hush. Hush from teachers. Hush from kids. Basically we flash mobbed 400 children, if you can have a flash mob of 4.

We weren't listed on the Talent Show Program. Just a mention of a "special performance" to close out the show. Oh, yeah, we got final billing. We slipped away from the assembly to change then hid in the back because we are mature.

And then we rocked it to the screams of "Oh My Gosh, it's the TEACHERS!".
video
This is the second half of our performance, which was just three rounds of the same moves (KISS: keep it simple for Susie). The kids were going nuts. Nuts. I'll liken it to Beatlemania because it's my blog and I can. They were so shocked that each time we started the dance back up, the yelling escalated. By round three, we could barely hear the music on stage. We were literally dancing to the rhythm of our hearts.

Jeffrey wasn't one to count out the beats so for the record, while we're dancing, we're thinking and counting:
Up, Up, Over, Over.
Cross, skip. Cross, skip.
Out, reverse. Out, reverse.
Punch, look, sit.
Hips, hips.
Eagle, Eagle.
Deal, deal, deal, deal.
Left, left.
Up, smack, look.

The man has a gift.
You can see that in the video.
You can also see Jeff with the Seattle Men's Chorus in April. I will be.

You can also go back and pinpoint the moment where I'm "blocked" from view and scrambling to get my lime light back. I was devastated. And you can go back and count the number of times that Jeffrey and I have the same "face". And you can review our chest bump, because it was perfect.

I mean, seriously, the still frames, people: Check out our mad synchro.


For the record, we were amazing in our minds. Amazing.

It was arguably one of the best moments of my teaching career. I just feel like you can't put a price on this kind of magic. Or beauty.
Did you need to see an outfit close up?

I thought you did. You are w-e-l-c-o-m-e.

And let me know if you need to see this in person, I will come a-running.
Just make sure you have a stage, glitter paper, spot light, and at least one of Jeff, Tessa, or Charlotte.

I don't dance alone.

7 comments:

  1. WOW.

    Impressive. You hold onto that moment, those moves...forever.

    PS - Jeff. Wow.

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  2. AWESOME. Wish I could put my kids in your class. Contemplating a move to Texas? Come on. You know you want to.

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  3. "minored in Susie meltdowns." favorite part...

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  4. Not only the wedding planner now the entertainer along with it. What fun!!MIL

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  5. So jealous, Susie. So, so jealous. Why didn't we do that at Smith? I would have totally rocked some zebra tights, leg warmers and hot pink crop top...oh, ya, and a prego belly.

    And the St. Patty's Day shananigans...love. You are a genius.

    I miss teaching. :)

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  6. Absolutely spectacular! You were not kidding! I will have to get Jeff's autograph next time I see him. Sure beats the Boot Scootin' Boogie the teachers did at Smith when Tim was the principal.

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Tell me about it. Oh and thanks for validating my life.

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