I have been to the brink of hell, stood on the edge, peered in, and made it back alive and relatively unscathed!
Let me explain. My daughter, Emma, had an assignment from one of her home school coop classes: pick a career field, find someone in it, and shadow them. Emma chose "events coordinator." She called many of the events sites in the metro area: Excel Center, Minneapolis Convention Center, and Target Center.
Desmond from the Minneapolis Convention Center called back. Emma could shadow him Saturday morning. The Star Power Dance Competition was hosting its national competition that day. Emma said yes. Star Power conjures images of famous people, actors, singers, maybe even a rock star.
This morning, Emma and I left for Minneapolis at 6:10am. We arrived and noticed a lot of little, lip-sticked, lavish, supercilious (from one of my favorite Emily Dickins poems) girls in various uniforms. I dropped Emma off, went to a nearby coffee shop, read the WJS and a finance book, and returned a little early to see what Star Power was all about.
Do you have a mental image of those little girls who parade as future Miss Americas with bonzai mothers, most with Texan accents, feverishly poking, prodding and basically living out their failed attempts at stardom? If you don't, thank the Lord. I do. And what I witnessed was equally disturbing.
On one stage, groups of these little girls stumbled around the stage through choreographed motions set to VERY loud music. Imagine, my brother and I, as little kids, aiding two cats by moving their little paws in sync with each other to create little dance performances. NOW, you've got a mental image!! I kept being distracted by the pasty, tubby tummies between two, way-too-small pieces of uniform.
In another room, one girl at a time pranced through basically the same scenario as described above.
Parents plied their wares of suitcases full of make-up, racks of costumes, pop-up changing rooms, fake eye-lashes, high energy snacks, hairspray, bobby pins, curling irons, fake hair extensions, older non-talented siblings doing the hair and make-up, and enough anxiety to fuel several small hybrid automobiles.
My eyes witnessed all of this during a 6 minute walk. Imagine if I were there all day today. If you ever meet Desmond, pat him on the back and say, "Well done." He's standing on the brink of hell all day. I hope he returns.