A Few Thoughts on Recitals and Cubbies

Yesterday I discovered the unthinkable. But all needless drama aside, I did find out something unfortunate. It was during my piano lesson that Ms. D dropped the bomb; I am going to have to participate in a recital.

The last time I was in a recital, I was seven. I hated it. My grandparents came, and it was made into a big deal. My sister and I had to sit still in a formal dress, or in Vee’s case black pants, and listen to other kids play the piano with varying skill. They were usually so bad that it was painful to listen, but we sat there until it was Vee’s turn. I knew that when she left the stage, it would be my turn. Blood was pounding in my ears, so I couldn’t really hear if she was any good. All I knew was that on the slim chance her piece lasted forever, I wouldn’t have to go up there. She never got stage fright, so better her than me, right?

But that was irrational. She had a very short piece, and left the stage. My heart dropped into my stomach, and I climbed the steps to the stage. I walked as slowly as I dared. Walking the way four year olds walk to the time out chair. The only way I could keep myself moving was to tell myself I could eat all the cookies I wanted after it was over. It kept me going for some reason, but it didn’t help my stage fright much.

My fingers went numb, and I played far too fast, so I could make a quick exit. In hind sight, it was a terrible combination.

Unfortunately the facility that held the recital had the stupidest rule ever. Kids could only have two cookies each. Two cookies! I went through all that and could only console myself with two small cookies. So I ate somewhere between ten and twenty cookies. I remember being very sneaky about it, but realistically I doubt anyone was fooled.

Basically, I get stage fright. I hate being watched. It makes me feel like an ant under a microscope. I’m hoping this time it will different. The recital is in January, so I have more than enough time to memorize the piece. And unlike when I was seven, I will play an actual song. I was worried it would be something stupid, like the rest of the songs Ms. D’s been making me play lately, but it’s not about bunnies eating clover, or the forest, or even a clown. I’m especially thankful for the later. Clowns terrify me. It’s recognizable and it’s pretty. But that’s as good as it gets.

The worst part is that Ms. D has caught on to my stage fright and has decided that it would just be the best idea ever if I were to practice my recital piece in the music store. Now, not only will I have to play in front of a faceless crowd in January, but I will have to play in front of a smaller more personal group regularly, which is a thousand times worse. I am going to die of embarrassment very soon. Even if I manage to get sick the day of the recital, I won’t be able to wiggle out of the worst of it. I’m doomed.

My strategy now is to hang around as many of the sick Cubbies as possible on Wednesdays, so I can get out of as much as possible. And that brings me to today. As usual here are some of the quotes and moments I can remember from Cubbies:

C: “My mommy is at the hospital. She is getting something out of her stomach, but I am not getting a baby.”

I still don’t know what was wrong with her mom.

I was taking a Cubbie to the bathroom. As usual he was in the bathroom, and I was outside the door waiting to take him back to the room until I heard some frustrated noises and finally a plea for help wafting through the cracks in the door. I opened the door, and saw him clinging to the sink, his legs flailing, and the stool out of their reach. He had already washed his hands, so I just got him down, he grabbed a paper towel, and we left for the Cubbie room.

C: (Running around the room holding a triangular wooden block above his head making a siren noise) “This a police vehicle. I didn’t have to build it!”

I’m not kidding, He used the word vehicle.

C: (Talking to a leader) “You’re hair is black!”
L: “Uh, really now?”
Me: “That translates to, you’re hair looks nice today, just like ‘why do you have necklaces on your teeth?’ means, I like you’re braces.”
L: (Laughing) “I like you’re version.”

That’s it for today. This has been the random writings of Leila. Thanks for tuning in!

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