So, last weekend we went over to see King Arthur’s aunt and uncle and bunches of other family. I’d met several of the family before, but I was unprepared for the onslaught of new faces (and names to go with those faces). I pretty much managed to remember most of the names, thank God! But my real moment to make an impression came as we sat down to play a game. While I was really getting into the game and figuring out how best to play, the chair I was sitting on suddenly gave out from under me. CRACK! OH! BOOM! GLASS BREAKING SOUNDS! Thankfully, no glass actually shattered; it was simply glassy rock-like things in vases that were on the floor behind me. Color me a freshly boiled lobster red of embarrassed!
I almost wish I could have seen my face during the whole ordeal. Part of me was just in shock. The other part of me was horrified in thinking my fat ass was responsible for the chair fail. Thankfully, I didn’t and couldn’t see my face. And even MORE thankfully, King Arthur’s cousin (who is fairly thin) told me he had the same exact thing happen to him in the same exact place (while playing the same exact game, which is rather suspicious, if you ask me).
So, despite my best efforts to be quietly supportive of my darling man, I made quite the impression on his family.
I wasn’t the only one making an impression that day. One of his cousins’ grandkids showed up with Girl Scout cookies to sell the family (smart kid) and (even smarter still) she employed her 3 1/2 year old brother as her chief salesman. I picked up a box of lemon-flavored cookies and young (we’ll call him) Steve said, “you should probably get the other box, too. It’s the last one.” I about peed myself when he said that. 3 1/2 years old with 40 years in sales! He also encouraged anyone without exact change to round up their purchases to make it easier on him since “I’m not good at making change yet.” Tell me this kid doesn’t have the makings of a great car salesman or a politician! And the entire time he was just freakin’ totes adorbs. (Yes, I said it. Don’t hate.)
Also making an impression of late: Yuzuru Hanyu, the 19 year old Olympic skater from Japan who totally killed it during the Men’s short program. Not only was his program sharp, clean, and a “wow”, but he was skating to Gary Moore’s “Parisian Walkways”. STUNNING! It’s one of my favorite Gary Moore tunes. It surprised me to 1) hear it at the Olympics, 2) to have such a young guy capture the soul of the song so beautifully, and 3) have a skater be so bold in his music choice, not to mention do it justice.
Even if Hanyu hadn’t chosen a great blues tune, I’d have cheered him on. His approach is simply beautiful. Relaxed, but with the kind of precision that takes your breath away.
Now, if only other skaters would take a cue from this young man and go with music that has some serious emotion to it. Everything Yuzuru Hanyu did was punctuated perfectly by his choice of music. Tell me those crisp, clean notes paired with the more fluid phrases don’t go with skating. Tell me. I dare you. Pop music doesn’t do that. Some of the more orchestral pieces don’t do that either, which is truly a crying shame. With blues, certain pieces of classic rock, and the right choice of classical or opera, you get the full depth and breadth of the human psyche and they give you the tension and rests you need to build a compelling presentation. (I write this as I watch the Japanese pair skate along to a “floral” but rather unexciting bit of music that gives really nothing in the way of climax to their performance. Grr! I dare say the impression you make on the audience should NOT be one of “I’m only yelling and complaining because you were so boring!” Whereas the U.S. pair skating right after them chose Santana and proved my point exactly. Sheesh, it’s hard to be right about so many things.)
And that concludes today’s thoughts on three unrelated, but slightly related topics*.
* Me, with King Arthur’s family…King Arthur’s grandnephew(??? Is that even such a thing???) knowing how to sell the crap out of cookies for his sister…skaters knowing how the sell the crap out of their performances. Yes, I believe I’d call that a triple!