Friday, January 6, 2006

Norma and Simone

Norma is so persistent sometimes! Does she not know that she is only a voice in my head? She makes me do the wildest things -and when anybody asks "why did you just do that for?" I always answer "I don't know" but in my head I think,

Damn you Norma!

Things Norma has persuaded me to do:
  • Get another dog, when one would suffice
  • Offer to babysit other people's kids
  • Sign up to bring meals to families in the ward when clearly I don't make any chicken casserole of any sort
  • Give Christopher back rubs (giving back rubs sans pay is the worst job in the whole world, and even if I were paid it wouldn't ever be enough, NOT IN THIS LIFETIME)
AND she tried to get me to volunteer to be on the activities committee. She actually had the guts to suggest, strongly, that I get Christopher to do the same. But Christopher shot Norma straight down. "You do not volunteer for callings, Courtney." But in my head I heard "You do not volunteer for callings, Norma."

Putting the guns back in their holster. Spin. Spin. Hip. Hip.

As of late Norma got me to get involved with the school play. So for 4 hours a week that is what I do after school. Sometimes I help the kids memorize their lines and sometimes we play improv games and sometimes we eat left-over Halloween cookies from out of the lunchroom. It all depends. But no, usually it's not agreeable. Sometimes there is a lot of clock staring, on my part.

Shelly, the director has not given me a big job to do yet. I've known Shelly for years and in fact, I used be her assistant. When it comes to being in charge Shelly knows her biz -she's not one for the delegation. But one year she gave me the distinct pleasure of making large clocks out of boxes and allowed me to go through 2 boxes of glitterglue. Nothing turns me on like glitter.

So as you can imagine, when it comes to the important decisions for the school play, Norma and I are left sitting on my old fold out chair making pig faces at the fourth graders.

But this all changed yesterday at play practice.

For the finale 6 groups of students come to center stage to do a little dance number, one group at a time, erstwhile the rest of ensemble dances, free style, on the sides of the stage. Yesterday, I could see clearly the kids were struggling getting their groove on while waiting for their big dance number. So I started to mingle amongst the crowd shaking my thing. Here a little there a little. Showing them how 'tis to be done.

Scratch went the music.

Shelly's yelling, "This group is not getting it!" She looks at the 6 students, standing front and center, embarrassed, awkward. "They are missing 8 counts. What do you think, Court?"

My big moment had arrived, 8 counts of my own to choreograph.


"Well" I said, moving to center stage. The students making way. 50 other students staring at me, waiting to see what I come up with.

And where do you think Norma was when I needed a little inspiration?

No. Not there.

She who got me into this mess, left at the most crucial time.

So, like any brave heart I started alone.

"And a 5,6,7,8" I yelled. One hand reaches out, arm extended, hand turned up. Other hand follows suit (as if to say "here it is"- a move jazz dancers do all the time.) Arms in. Then a kick. Bang! And turn. Fold the arms. Nod of the head (show the audience 'tude). And Bam! You're done!

"Ok, um, well. Hum. Let's come back to that -give me some time to think. Thanks guys." Shelly says as she waves the dancers off, avoiding eye contact with me. The children scatter off the stage leaving me, breathless, and alone. I hear giggles from the back.

Damn you Norma.

Sometimes I think about how Norma would be appalled to realize that she shares the same head with Simone. Simone is everything Norma is not, and I really like Simone. Simone would've gotten all Bob Fosse if she would have been there.

But then Norma reminds me, "Those kids shouldn't be doing Fosse... for heaven's sake!"