Chuck's column: A lapse in judgement?I’m directing the middle school play this spring.
I’ve been keeping something from you now for a while. I just wasn’t sure when the right time was to tell you. It’s not like it was a choice. It just sort of … happened.
Ok. I lied.
It WAS a choice.
I’m directing the middle school play this spring.
I know, I know. What was I thinking? Did I not have enough on my plate? Was I simply looking for more money in my retirement by adding extra dollars to my income now? Had I fallen, hit my head, and someone took advantage of my vulnerable state?
Nope. I just thought it might be fun. And refreshing. And, yes, challenging.
And after an informational meeting and two days of auditions, I can honestly say, without hesitation, “What was I thinking!?”
I seem to have forgotten what the middle school student was like. At the informational meeting, where it was estimated over 150 of “them” showed up, I have to admit that what little energy I had left after a day of teaching high schoolers was immediately sucked out of me when I stepped foot in the room with all that early-teen octane.
At one point in the meeting, four young ladies wanted to sing a song for me. Individually. That meant four different performances. Mind you, this is NOT a musical I’m directing. It’s simply a three-act comedy. However, I welcomed their offer of music once all had left and I listened to the four girls and their four songs.
Then came auditions. More energy. Lots more energy. I forgot what it was like at that age to audition for a play. I suspect I was probably like that as well at that age. I would have a specific part I was trying out for, but if the director needed someone to read certain parts to assist students who were reading alone, then I am certain I was likely raising my hand and incessantly offering to be the guy the director could rely on to step in and help out.
I have two totally reliable adults to help me in this little journey. And a great liaison at the middle school who has kindly provided us with valuable input to this point because she knows so many and we know none.
I haven’t shared the name of the play with you yet because I don’t think you’re ready to hear it. I’ll save that for the second part of this column. It should arrive around late March. I am thinking I’ll save some great stories that happen to us in the weeks ahead and I’ll share them with you, prior to the show opening in week two of April. At that time, I’ll clue you in as to the show title. You’ll likely chuckle, if not more.
In the meantime, think of me, working with late teen folks all day long and then running up the hill to deal with the next bracket younger. It’s likely to add yet more gray to what seems to be a head full of nothing BUT gray. In the process, however, I am sure these 17 new young people, whom I will get to know better and better with each passing week, will only add to the richness of my career. When it’s all said and done, sometimes kids are far more fun to deal with than adults.
Watch for my book some day on THAT topic! See ya next time!