October 26, 2009

Thank You for the Music

My Broadway career ended at age eight when I became a dance class dropout. The reason for this eludes me to this day, as my mom insists that I had both talent and promise. However, I remember trading in my tap shoes for softball cleats; I guess I wanted to throw a ball rather than dance in one. Whatever the reason was, I’ve recently regretted ending my dance career prematurely. Now the closest I’ll ever get to living out my Broadway dream is stalking the actors at the stage door, shoving pens in their hands while simultaneously taking their photo and gushing over their incredible performances.

Despite my lack of dance experience, I’ve tried to live out my Broadway calling in non-dancing roles in school and community theatre productions of Peter Pan, Carousel, Into the Woods, and Little Shop of Horrors (thank goodness human-eating plants don’t dance). You’ll also find me singing “You Belong with Me” at the top of my lungs in the car, living room, or whenever someone mentions Kanye. I love doing karaoke, but it is often difficult to encourage friends to sing with me, let alone be seen with me in public while I sassily perform my rendition of “Summer Nights.” So it makes sense that when one of my sorority sisters expressed interest in going to karaoke night at Woodstock’s in Downtown Davis, I was absolutely ecstatic.

Last Wednesday, eight of us secured a table right in front of the karaoke stage, and we immediately began pouring over the song books. You know when you dance around with your friends, you’re singing your favorite songs together, but when you actually have a chance to sing for an audience other than your closet mirror you have no idea what to choose? I could have picked a crowd pleaser and encouraged everyone to get up and clap and bust a move (hello, Journey), or a favorite of mine, as it’s always been one of my dreams (I have a lot) to sing “Part of Your World” to people who appreciate the amazing talent of Jodi Benson. As this would only have been self-indulgent, I decided to choose something a bit more universal. One of the girls exclaimed “Elysa! Do something by Abba!” Without hesitation, I scribbled down my name and “Mamma Mia” on the sign-up sheet. Panicking for an instant that I only knew the musical version and not the original, I thanked the karaoke gods for implementing the lyrics-on-screen feature.

We all had an absolute blast. It may not have been the Broadway debut that I had envisioned for so many years, but living out my dream in front of a group of supportive friends who cheered and clapped when I took my bow was more than good enough for me.

October 19, 2009

Show Me What I'm Looking For

I like to be prepared for anything and everything.  When going to the beach, I’m always the one to remember sunscreen, towels, an umbrella, water bottles, and even more sunscreen.  When I attend a Broadway show, I make sure to tuck an extra Sharpie in my purse, just in case one runs out right before getting Laura Bell Bundy’s autograph.  I also take home a pound of extra playbills for fear that one will get creased on the ride home.  So it’s safe to say that I like to be ready for any situation, which is why I went into total panic mode on the first day of my English 10B class.  Switching from my Urban Outfitters bag to my backpack, I made sure that my notebooks, water bottle, gum, phone, keys, and wallet were in place.  It wasn’t until I was waiting at the bus stop that I had a nagging feeling I had forgotten the most important back-to-school supply of all--a pen.

I quickly swivel my backpack around and search for a pen in the front pocket, where I normally keep several.  Empty.  I ruffle through my notebooks in the main compartment, even look in my cosmetic bag, just in case I had stuffed one in there for safe keeping.  Nothing!  I slowly put my backpack on and look around.  I think of asking a friendly-looking face if I could borrow one for the day, but what were the odds of me ever finding them again to return it?  That was out of the question. 

As I board the G-line, my mind reels through various solutions to this very embarrassing predicament.  I can strategically sit next to a super cute guy, ask to borrow a pen, and voila! said writing utensil is received and a conversation ensues.  This is a win-win situation, at least for me.  However, I quickly strike this idea, as I don’t want to be deemed a total loser for being unprepared the first day of class.  If I was asked to loan a pen to a classmate, I would, of course, oblige, but would judge them for not being prepared and most likely give them a Seriously? face, followed by an eye roll after they turn away.  I know these kids all too well--the Pen-Forgetters.  They are from the same species as the Homework-Misplacers, Instruction-Interrupters, Attention-Hoarders, and the overall belligerent fools who would keep the class behind an extra ten minutes after the bell rang.  I have never been, and will never be, lumped into that category of these unprepared and directionless students.  I nix the idea of borrowing a pen from a classmate, cute or otherwise.

As the bus pulls up to the MU, I’m struck with sudden inspiration.  Checking my cell, I have thirteen minutes to get to Olson--time for a quick detour.  Hopping off the bus and with fixed determination, I maneuver my way through lost students and inexperienced bike riders to get to the bookstore, aka the Devine Pen Retailer.  I just need one, I think, just one to last me the next 50 minutes.  I skim the racks of pens, not wanting to spend five bucks on a new pack, since I already have a ton at home.  Then I spy it.  An unknown brand, medium point, black ink pen, for a mere 59 cents.  I walk triumphantly up to the electronics counter and complete my purchase, humorously telling the cashier that this might be the smallest purchase she’ll get all day. 

Feeling confident that now I will not have to succumb to peer ridicule, I make my way over to Olson 217, where I sit down and promptly spot an abandoned pen next to my feet.  I almost pick it up, but then reconsider.  I’ll leave it for the next person, notorious Homework-Misplacer or even Star Student, who also has an inkless morning.

October 17, 2009

New Bags!

Finally, new bags!  Here are some pics of the four newest handbags that I've finished since being back in Davis.  I have transformed a corner of our living room into a craft center, stragetically arranged so that I can sew while catching up on Glee.  Now if only I could sew, watch television, AND write my paper that's due on Monday all at the same time...could I have a few more hours in the day please?

I included pictures of both the outside and the inside of the bags; they are reversible, so you can change up the style depending on your mood!  If you are interested in buying one of the bags, let me know :)