Monday, September 19, 2011

1992 - unfit for (being) a queen

i'm not sure it was my first crush, but i'm certain it was the first time my crushee liked me in return. the problem was, i was a rule keeper. i truly was {am} afraid to break rules. any rules. i was too afraid of the consequences, getting in trouble or, worst of all, disappointing someone. if a guideline was given, you could pretty much be certain i was going to keep it. and that went for boyfriends. my dad said i couldn't have one {remember i was in the 5th grade}, so when...we'll call him down on one knee on the playground and asked me to go steady with him, i had to say no. 

it was the rule. 

but i did like him. and it's always flattering to be liked in return. so it made for a long few weeks at recess because joe was persistent. he kept asking and i kept obeying my dad's rule.

that fall, the fifth grade classes at monta vista elementary were to perform a play all about christopher columbus and his crossing of the ocean in 1492. i was cast as queen isabella. i stood on my throne with king ferdinand to my left and my guard - joe - on my right. 

throughout the play, i had a few speaking parts and participated in a handful of musical numbers. for each song, whoever was participating was to stand up to sing and sit back down when finished. each time i stood up and sat down, my throne {mr. schoell's dining room chair, i later found out*} inched backward on the riser, unbeknownst to me. at the end of the song, i had a speaking part where my guard handed me a scroll. i opened it, pretending to read imaginary words that weren't really there, responded with my line and sat back down on my throne. 

on this day - the dress rehearsal and my 11th birthday - joe handed me a not-so-blank scroll. as i opened the rolled sheet, i read those familiar words only previously spoken to me - "will you go steady with me?

like i mentioned, joe was persistent. and apparently tricky, because my line in the play was to answer in the affirmative. i squeaked out my positive reply - a very faint yes - and, with butterflies in my stomach, bent my knees to sit down. joe was grinning the entire time. as i reached my throne, i began to feel as if it wasn't so sturdy. the chair - and queen isabella - fell backward off the riser smack onto the gymnasium floor. my fall was slowed a tiny bit by the plastic drapes hung ever-so-carefully from the basketball hoop to the stage, ready for the next day's performance. but my fall wasn't slowed enough to keep me conscious. i awoke a few minutes later to mr. schoell, mr. hadfield, mrs. wright, and the entire fifth grade class staring down at me with wide, nervous eyes. joe was front and center. 

when i came to, i was whisked off to the front office to have the nurse check me out. other than a brief moment of unconsciousness, all i left with that {birth}day was a big, fat, goose egg on my head. i still have remnants of it today. 

the chair was glued back together, the plastic drapes rehung and the show went on. 

after a chat with joe telling him again that no, i would not go steady with him, he moved on to emily. which was fine by me. the next year joe pierced both his ears and that's so not a style fit for this queen. 

*i found out it was mr. schoell's personal dining room chair when i was 20 and i attended the wedding of his son, who was marrying a friend from college. i re-introduced myself. he remembered me. and then proceeded to tell all members of his family, "hey! this is the girl who broke the red velvet chair!" nice. 

no pictures of this event. i know. i think there's a video recording of part of the play, which is even more embarrassing because i was and still am a horrific actor. it pains me to watch myself perform anything. but, rest assured the dress i wore was a beautiful baby blue prom dress {thrifted from the d.i.} with small white hearts covering it in its entirety. lots of lace as well. and to top it off, i had a homemade crown and a sheer tablecloth, adored with glue and glitter on its edges as my cape. it was truly stunning.

more of 1992:
 {standing in our soon-to-be new, solo bedrooms in south jordan utah. kelli and i actually switched rooms before we moved in...}
 {in front of the foundation of our new home. please note the high pony tail, side swept bangs, enormous shorts, and teal socks worn with huarache sandals. no wonder i was frowning.}
{at my cousin's wedding with some other cousins: tiffany, taralyn, karalyn, tabitha and sister kelli}


dani said...

I am enjoying these posts way too much Maren! I feel like I'm reading cute children's novels. Also, I'm loving seeing so much of Leah in little-you. Maybe you should start curling her some bangs too! :)

ed and kelli said...

oh swisher... remember when he shaved a bat in his hair? so weird.

Rach said...

I love these stories! So funny. I love that you and I are both "non-rule breakers". We are kindred spirits. Except that no one ever asked me to go steady with them. I practically had to beg Scott to marry me :)

Nancey said...

Maren, I've been enjoying your stories, so entertaining, and I relate so much to the bangs and fashion faux pas, keep 'em coming! Even though we were roommates for a while, I finally feel like I'm getting to know ya : )P.S. I love that quilt on Leah's bed, did you make it? I'm a fabric-holic too-yikes.