Tuesday, July 21, 2009

A Child's Words are the Most Profound


My youngest brother, Clint just finished 2nd grade. His teacher's name was Ms. Alvey. I never talk to Clint much about school but I was aware that he really liked his teacher, she was his favorite yet. My mom liked her too.

The day before he returned to school from Christmas Break, she passed away. I remember seeing his face when my mom told him. There wasn't really any pain, just shock. He didn't say much for a couple days. He never really showed any grief or pain over her passing, but we did find that there was a bit of hostitility towards his new teacher. I'm sure it was hard for all of the kids.

This summer, his new teacher mailed him a portfolio of his 2nd grade year. The first page was a list of what each class member wrote about Ms. Alvey the day they found out she had passed. I'd like to share this with you:


She was nice to me.
She was pretty.
She wore lots of bling!
She let us spray paint her hair.
If you gave her something, she kept it.
She told me that no matter what, I am a rock star!
She was fun.
She cared about me.
She said do it nice, or do it twice!
She was kind.
She dressed like a hippie for Halloween!
She was nice.
I love her.
I loved her bling.
She dressed nice.
She was a good teacher.
Her hair was pretty.
I liked her a lot.
She told me the truth.
She did gingerbread houses with us.


I never met this woman, but this list is so powerful and moving to me. This is a stunning look into the mind of child. Some of these statements are so genuine and I'm sure there is so much thought behind them. One of my favorites is "If you gave her something, she kept it." That is so profound. Think about what this child could've given her and why it meant so much for this child that she kept things that were given to her. Most of the statements are very specific as well, not just throwaway compliments. These kids meant what they said. These children are obviously at a very innocent and corruptible stage and I'm glad that this woman was there for them.

I won't get too specific, but this past year I've really had to re-discover the importance of youth, mostly due to a little show I did called Peter Pan, but that is another story for another time. Children are care-fee, sincere, silly, playful, and more wise than anyone gives them credit for. Hopefully I can keep some element of youth in my life, no matter my age. Thank you Ms. Alvey and her second grade class for this little reminder.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Amateurs

I enjoy musical theater, watching it mostly. One of my very strange hobbies is finding amateurs on youtube that I like. After I see a show, I'll usually search youtube for some of the numbers, and always, I'm amazed by the talent...or lack thereof. Here are some of my favorites:

Aida:


So the ensemble and choreography are hit and miss but the lead absolutely blows me away. I can listen to that last note all day.

The Scarlet Pimpernel:


So much emotion, so much power. Gives me the chills.

Parade:


I want to see this show so much. I will before I die. I'm seriously in denial that he is 15.

Ragtime:


Vocals are insanity. I also love how the emotion and intensity physically knocks her over, so cool.

Miss Saigon:


This is one of my favorite scenes in all of musical theater. It's so affecting. This video is taken from the wings. It's great, but there's really nothing like experiencing it in person. Hopefully someday I'll get to do this scene as Thuy. Someday.

Les Miserables:


High school. This kid is in high school!

Thoroughly Modern Millie:


Everything about this scene is perfect. The girl that plays Mrs. Meers is bleeding talent from every pore. Her name is Diana Buchwald, search her.

Beauty and the Beast:


This is my favorite version of this song, ever. This girl, Natalie Hawkins, was 17 when she did this. She actually has quite a following on Youtube, very talented young lady.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

"I don't care what you think of me."

*Rant Warning*

I've decided that people that stomp around saying the phrase "I don't care what people think about me" are in most cases, the ones that care the most. I feel like it's a defense and justification for your actions. Almost as if you need a reason to be the person you are. You want so badly to be different and so badly to be admired for your individuality that your individuality isn't for you, it's so other people will look at you and say "wow, you're unique, you don't care what people think of you."

Also, I think that the above mentioned phrase can be justification for being rude and insensitive.  I haven't really ever pondered this concept until very recently, but think about it. When do people tell you this? Usually when they are blatantly insulting someone else. If that's the case, I DO care what people think of me. I would hate for someone to think that I hated them when in truth I don't. Because apparently, people do think I hate them when in most cases, I don't.  It hurts to find out that people have avoided you because they were "intimidated" by you.

So here's my deal. Yeah, I'm pretty honest. I suck at lying. If you ask me a question, I will answer with the utmost sincerity. But I try not to say anything that doesn't need to be said.  I'd like to think that I have more friends in this world than enemies. I also KNOW that I am me for me. I'm not ashamed of anything I do and I don't do anything that MUST be kept secret. I have morals and I'm always me. I'm not too concerned with the labels or ideas people have about me, but I'd hate for people to have the wrong idea. I probably don't hate you, and I DO care what you think of me.