Talent Show

September 10, 2009 at 8:59 am 25 comments

Last night I accidentally started watching Glee. When they started lip syncing “Gold Digger” Stephen and I threw up our dinner and then realized Wipe Out was on. During the commercial break of one of these shows, we saw a preview for a new show called The Middle. They showed a hilarious scene with Patricia Heaton and her son. She gave him a pancake for breakfast.

Son: But it’s still frozen!
Mom: Just lick it. It’ll last longer.

I don’t know how this scene ended but I cracked up. I’m sure this nerdy little kid headed off to school, frozen pancake in hand. It probably lasted him an hour and he had no idea how ridiculous this was. Because that’s the power parents have over little kids. Kids believe anything. Kids think that their behavior is normal… and it’s not.

Have I ever told you that I was really cool when I was in elementary school?  The answer to that question is no. No, I have not told you that I was really cool in elementary school because I was not cool. I had coke bottle glasses and wore spandex shorts with oversized t-shirts. I specifically remember wearing my mom’s Jazzercise t-shirt. I was smart and nerdy and not very funny.

“We were all like that, Chelsea! All elementary school kids are nerdy.”

No no. You don’t understand. You and your scrunchie socks have nothing on me. Your side ponytail and pencil case full of mechanical pencils are far more superior than my perm from a bottle and sharpen-it-yourself pencils. There is no contest. Want proof?

In 3rd grade I entered the talent show. Huge mistake. Nobody should ever enter the talent show. Third graders don’t have talent unless their name happens to be Dakota Fanning or Shirley Temple. Third graders aren’t fully aware of their bodies and have a tendency to display awkward behaviors. I was the queen of awkward behaviors. And for some reason, I thought it would be a good idea to consider myself “talented” and show McWhirter Elementary just how talented I was. So a friend and I made up a routine and jump roped to it.

We took this very seriously. Now I had experience performing my arts in front of crowds. I had played in my fair share of piano recitals. And it’s not very easy to play the piano while wearing a puffy dress made out of your great grandmother’s curtains. What I’m telling you is that I am good enough to perform in the most stressful of situations. When I was on the Spin Jammer team, I was able to perform in front of a mob of 17 senior citizens at Moody Gardens. I know, you had no clue. I never cease to amaze you.

In case you were cool in elementary school, let me educate you. This is a Spin Jammer.

spin jammer

That’s not me. That’s a professional. Although I did have the lime green Spin Jammer with black writing. And clearly I had no fashion sense because our uniforms were red, white, and blue and I probably should have bought a Spin Jammer to match, but who could be bothered by such small details.

Let’s back up a bit. I’m not done telling you about the talent show.

My friend and I had some serious jump rope skills. We could criss cross at the same time and we almost never messed up. So she was in charge of coming up with a routine and I was in charge of music. I wonder if she realized her mistake in asking me to do this. In elementary school I listened to Christian music and oldies. That’s all. And since I didn’t own any CDs I enlisted the help of my parents. They sent me to school with a frozen pancake.

We flipped through their CDs. I couldn’t use Amy Grant or Michael W. Smith because I already had roller skate and hula hoop routines to all of those songs and I would just get confused if I tried to jump rope to them. So we busted out the Rich Mullins CD. I will not be shocked in the slightest if none of you have heard of the song that we choose. It’s call “Screen Door.” The chorus says:

Faith without works is like a song you can’t sing,
It’s about as useless as a screen door on a submarine.

True story. I jump roped to that. WE jump roped to that. In matching royal blue full-body leotards. I had to borrow the matching one from a friend of ours that was in gymnastics with her. It should be noted that she was probably 7 inches shorter than me.

I was too naive to know that I should be embarrassed. As far as I knew, everyone knew that song. And if they didn’t, they should. Because what’s more funny to a 3rd grader than the idea of a screen door on a submarine? Nothing. So we jumped our little hearts out. Whenever I feel like I need a good dose of humility, I’ll post the pictures my mom took that day. My parents encouraged these behaviors. The Spin Jammer team, the jump roping, the Cup Stacking team. (The Cup Stackers were a branch of the Spin Jammer team. We had talent oozing from our pores and needed another hobby. Enter: cups with holes.)

That’s the job of parents. They encourage their kids to get involved. Maybe they are secretly laughing at their kids and thinking “Won’t it be hilarious when our daughter is older and she remembers her awkward childhood?? Maybe she’ll write about it or something.” But they don’t say those things out loud. They only manipulate encourage us to participate. And then they send us to school with a frozen pancake and a song about a dysfunctional submarine.






Sarah from Life More Exciting is responsible for that post. You can blame her.

Leave two more words in your comment and we’ll give this another shot next week!

Entry filed under: Chelsea, Family. Tags: , , , , , , , .

Pictures of My Grown Up Life Seven Quick Takes (vol.6)

25 Comments Add your own

  • 1. mom  |  September 10, 2009 at 9:11 am

    OMGOSH!!!! That was hilarious! I sooo remember all of those wonderful activities that we MANIPULATED (oops) encouraged you to take part in. You ALWAYS wanted to do something – always out there looking for another FUN activity! Oh how I love having kids so I can re-live all their crazy memories! (And that jump rope routine with Sarah was awesome, by the way)

  • 2. Dad  |  September 10, 2009 at 9:23 am

    You were the greatest Spin Jammer, Jump Rope Dancer and Cup Stacker ever!

  • 3. osarah  |  September 10, 2009 at 9:30 am

    Good job linking the two, but there’s one thing I don’t understand: what’s wrong with Glee/the Kanye West song they tried to add to their repertoire?

    This post also reminded me of two things:

    1. In third grade, my three “best friends” and I would make up a dance. I remember specifically one to a Garth Brooks song. We would then coordinate a day to bring our leotards to school. I actually think I wore a unitard (a short one, not pants) with “electric colors” all over it and wind shorts. We would dance for the rest of our class. I’m sure I’d be embarrassed if anyone had photographic or video evidence of this. Luckily, to my knowledge none exists.

    2. I was in the honors program, and all of the honors kids had “buddies” at a local nursing home. In 4th or 5th grade, our teacher decided it would be great for us to put on a talent show for our buddies. A friend and I decided to dance to “Whoop! There It Is.” We didn’t understand the lyrics. No one told us not to dance to it – especially as 4th-5th graders dancing for the old folks. To this day, I’m still ashamed.

  • 4. Sarah @ This Heavenly Life  |  September 10, 2009 at 9:31 am

    Paprika/Brooklyn. GO NUTS!

  • 5. molly  |  September 10, 2009 at 9:32 am


  • 6. Mendy  |  September 10, 2009 at 9:52 am

    Girl, you are too too funny! I am sure your Mom told you the same thing I told my kids when I wanted them to do something…it builds character! My kids would tell me that they had enough character to last them a lifetime. I hope they do.

  • 7. Caroline  |  September 10, 2009 at 10:07 am

    I am sorry, but that is just too funny. Don’t knock the Jazzercise shirt, I go to Jazzercise.

  • 8. Lindsay  |  September 10, 2009 at 10:43 am

    HAHAhA! I’m so glad you did those and not me! I did the sports instead…however I did have poofy hair and wore spandex over what I thought to be extra large tshirts…it was really an adult small because I totally still own one of them and still wear it today.

    But Ohhh how I did love playing with your spin jammer!

  • 9. Lyndsey  |  September 10, 2009 at 10:57 am

    we didn’t have spin jammers or cup stacking in the back woods.

    When I was in the third grade I cut my jeans off and tried to make them shorts (while wearing them). they were really short in the front and long in the back. realizing that I would get in trouble for too short shorts i tried to staple them back together. it did not work. my dad had to bring me clothes. i am sure we will discuss it at my 10 year reunion. it was sort of a defining moment.

  • 10. Ashley  |  September 10, 2009 at 12:00 pm

    When I think of elementary school I cringe at the way I dressed — no not what my mom picked out but what I HAD TO HAVE. I believe in one school photo I am sporting a jump suit that is blue with sea creatures on it. I remember BEGGING for this. What was I thinking?!

  • 11. Lauren From Texas  |  September 10, 2009 at 12:52 pm


  • 12. Samantha  |  September 10, 2009 at 4:45 pm

    Oh, that is SO hilarious!!! I wish you had posted a photo.

  • 13. Sarah  |  September 10, 2009 at 5:14 pm

    OMG. I seriously just peed in pants. This is HILARIOUS.

    And for the record, I wasn’t cool in elementary school, but I was probably cooler than you. But since you were able to match those two words, you are definitely cooler than me as an adult!

  • 14. Sarah  |  September 10, 2009 at 5:15 pm

    Also, this came up at the bottom of this post for me..

    Possibly related posts: (automatically generated)

    * Bad Crowd: Why Juvenile Detention Makes Teens Worse
    * Spanking Kids in School Still Common, Especially Among Disabled – The Juggl…

  • 15. Krysten  |  September 10, 2009 at 6:12 pm

    Oh gosh, totally hysterical!

  • 16. Erin  |  September 10, 2009 at 7:10 pm

    Well done. Freakishly well done, in fact.


  • 17. Rachel  |  September 10, 2009 at 9:04 pm

    Hilarious!! I feel your pain because Bob and Deb video recorded Brad and my home made “performance” to NKOTB. Performance is used loosely in this context.
    Two words that I KNOW you won’t be able to use in a sentence because it is not possible: Texas and sucks

  • 18. Allison  |  September 10, 2009 at 9:40 pm

    You’re so funny. I think everybody thinks it’s cute when their kid does it!

  • 19. Heather  |  September 10, 2009 at 10:09 pm

    That’s one good argument for uniforms—we were never humiliated in elementary school (well, at least not by our outfits)

  • 20. The Husband  |  September 10, 2009 at 11:12 pm

    I was the one who drew the two words and even I didn’t see this one coming!

    That was a smooth connection…very smooth.

    Also, I demand pictures, and I demand to see them in a public forum!

  • 21. Kristin  |  September 11, 2009 at 12:26 pm

    I’m quite in awe of your mad blogging skills. I don’ t know if I could have come up with a post based on those words. Oddly enough the hubs and I were talking about my 4th grade talent show last night. So weird. Anyway, three of my friends and I lip synced to Be My Baby while dressed as babies. It was something special. Ah ha

  • 22. Jen  |  September 11, 2009 at 8:03 pm

    I totally remember that talent show! You were awesome, and we DID think it was cool! And side note until I read this I had forgotten about spin jammers…I loved them. I wonder if I could still do it?? Haha loved the post!

  • 23. rachelheather  |  September 13, 2009 at 8:19 am

    Rich Mullins is a genius and I loved that song.

  • 24. Jimbo  |  September 15, 2009 at 5:04 pm

    I agree with Rachel, Rich Mullins is a genius. And yes, that song is AWESOME!

    Chelsea, nice connection, funny post, awesome story. One question:

    With Stephen’s awkwardness and your embarrassing childhood, is it possible that your kids could have a childhood that shatters all former records of embarrassment?

    Also, did I spell embarrassment correctly?

  • 25. Jen Halligan  |  September 15, 2009 at 6:39 pm

    So I know that I’m behind on the blog commenting but Oh My Gosh!! I think I can remember that talent show, there were so many they blur together! I do remember the spin jammer team, I spent a short amount of time participating, but my true colors came through on the scarf juggling team! Yes, we traveled all the way to Clear Brook High School to compete…apparently there were more than one scarf juggling teams in CCISD!

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September 2009


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