The October Daily: Dig out a childhood photo and share something you remember happening during that time the photo was taken.
OK. This is a photograph of a photograph that wasn’t very good quality to start with but… still… it’s a good story.
When my sister was in High School and I was in fifth grade she had a choir concert that focused on music from TV or something along those lines.
One of the songs was, “I wish I was an Oscar Meyer Weiner.”
This makes perfect sense to you if you were a kid in the mid 1980’s. The song was burned into all of our brains along with “two all beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions, on a seasame seed bun.” Nobody knew about pink slime back then. Or… maybe no one cared. I’m not sure. Anyway…
The choir director had a great idea to have a wiener dog cross the stage during the song and someone had just such a pup.
I have no idea how it came to be that I was the Chosen One who got to walk the dog but, there I was.
It was the night of the big show and my mom had painstakingly made my waist-length hair into sausage curls. She dressed me in my Sunday best and dropped me off back stage.
All the High School kids and me.
Man! This was seriously cool!
So someone handed me the leash and said, “You’re just going to wait for the cue and cross the stage.” The big kids went on-stage and there I was, waiting in the wings with good ol’ Oscar who was shaking like a leaf.
Silly dog! I thought. He has stage fright.
I wasn’t afraid. I was waiting for my big moment. I wasn’t going to mess up the whole concert, no way! i would do my part perfectly and everyone would say, “Aw! Look how cute!” and my mom would take me out for ice cream afterward and all would be well with the world.
The dog was acting a little weird. He was kind of pacing around and panting.
Sure enough, up came that evening’s kibble, all over the back-stage floor.
I thought I wasn’t able to be any more grossed out… until he started eating it again.
My 11 year old self was truly horrified. What should I do? There was no way I could get the attention of anyone on stage and I didn’t have time to go find my mom. My part was coming up!
“OK, dog,” I told him. “Pull yourself together! We’ve got to do this.”
I heard the line: “I wish I were an Oscar Meyer Weiner…”
I started walking.
Oscar stayed put.
I tugged the leash.
He sat down.
That dog was not going on-stage.
I was going to miss my moment!
The concert would be ruined and it would be all my fault!
I did the only thing I could think of. I dragged that poor dog across the stage behind me. He never moved. He was frozen like a quivering little statue. I got about 3 steps out before the audience started chuckling. Then they were laughing. Then they were roaring. If you look closely at the choir members in the photo you can see them, doubled over in laughter at the spectacle of the nerdy little girl with the plastered-on smile grunting as she hauled 25 pounds of seriously unwilling, completely immobile dog along behind her.
I don’t remember if I ever got ice cream. I suspect I did.
I do know that my mother will read this story and laugh until she cries because she talked about that night for years and never could get through the whole story without completely cracking up.
It wasn’t the moment I had envisioned, but at least it was memorable!
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