Sunday, March 22, 2009

It was Tuesday, the last of six acting classes that set C on a fast-track to Broadway. There was a feeling of excited anticipation as the five sets of parents filed into the little concrete room to sit against the wall and see what talent their $95 had purchased for their children. The little ones were already in their places, awaiting the teacher's direction. Just as we sat down with Jules a pack of gum in her hand caught the eye of her acting-debut-sister. Instantly, Carolyn's eyes locked on the gum, her mind could think of nothing else. The very loud whispers started, "Is that GUM!?! Do you have some for me!?!" The teacher began the story, in which C was to play one of the three little pigs, but it was to no avail. The gum had stole the show in C's mind, and nothing - not even an acting debut in front of ten hopeful parents (two in particular) - could bring her back to the task at hand. From the audience we tried every tactic we could think of...hand gestures, mouthing threats under our breath, shaking our head 'NO' disapprovingly...nothing could shake her focus. All she heard in her mind was "gum gum gum gum gum gum gum". And all she said in a loud whisper was "Where's the gum! Did you save some for me! Don't let her eat it ALL!" Through ten grueling minutes we sat in disbelief at the incredible spell a simple stick of Wrigleys could put over a four-year-old.

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