Friday, November 6, 2015

Pink... its just a color.

My parents were divorced & remarried by the time I was 6.  My stepfather worked a steady job & I did not live with my Dad,  so my life was greatly influenced by my mom.  

I was the 4th child of my mom along with my step siblings.  I was my mom's little girl.  She raised me with strong morals & I was given a great education in both life, books, music & art.  My room had a pink rug with floral wall paper in a pink hugh.  Even the curtains were pink.  I had a doll collection & a doll house.  I took dance, art, was involved in summer theatrical programs, and studied piano with a focus on classical (although I did persuade my mom to teach me the theme from the Love Boat & other favorite TV show tunes).  I had my tiny close group of girlfriends.  We went to the mall, put on make up, did our hair, danced around the room singing Madonna, Prince or Cyndi Lauper into our hair brushes.  We were girls.

Eventually our teenage years were filled with secret trips to Faneuil Hall & Downtown Crossings.  Our fashion went from mini-skirts to parachute pants, thankfully the fluorescent phase was short.  We went to underage dance clubs.  Our weekends went from roller skating to the dance floor where you would find us breaking, moon walking & dancing until we were exhausted.  Our hair went from blonds & browns to purples & rainbow mohawks.  It was the 80's & we were now teenage girls.  

Life went on.  Most of us returning to more natural hair colors.  Some of the girls had children, some married & divorced (as I too had done so & in a pink dress mind you... the marriage not the divorce, don't recall what I wore to that), but there was no question we were still girls.  We still love to dress up, dance & chat on the phone. We surly don't do it enough these day's, but my point is, we still remained our mothers daughters.  The one's they raised to be the little girls they always wanted.  But I don't think my mom had the me I am today in mind.

My mom raised me to be me.  She influenced my girlish side with pink things, dolls & trips to the mall, but she never demanded I look a certain way (aside from dressing like a slut being unacceptable).  I went through many phases.  The punk look being one of the longest stretching through most of High School.  My college years were filled with theatrics & eventually led into a career with the Disney Company.  I met my once husband there & left him there.  It was not the fairy tale it was thought to be. But life went on.  I traveled a bit, visited girlfriends, danced, dressed up & reclaimed my girl status.  I eventually met the love of my life.  We got married.  This time pink was not involved.  In face I had strict instructions that there was to be no pink what so ever involved in the wedding or reception.  Life was good.  

Things change & the economy is a major contributor.  Our lives went from living in the penthouse to a home on wheels.  Eventually landing us in Bisbee.  Here is where the pink comes back into my life but not as my mom expected.  You wont usually find me wearing a pink dress or the like.  What you will find me wearing in pink is steel toe work boots, work gloves or my bee suit.  Who knew that I was going to grow up to be a wild bee iPhotographer & wrangler.  That my other steady job would be driving an engine into an old Copper mine.  These are not the things little girls are made of... or are they?  

Because my mom let me do what I want, I never felt that I couldn't do something that I found interest in.  I never felt an interest in sports, even though we played soft ball in elementary school.  I did find a love of art & have put that into my current life.  What has become a hobby is now something I get paid for.  These are influences my mom placed upon me that have flourished.  She never stopped me from changing through the years, she only gave me advice & encouragement.  The pink that she poured over me during life stuck a little but it did not change me, nor did it define me.  I still became the person I was meant to be.  I still love to dress up & dance.  I still love glitter on pretty much anything.  I am still a girl.  I just happen to work in a predominately male field.  But I do the job just as well as any dude... I just do it with a little pink.  

Monday, July 6, 2015

With the flip of a coin*

It was in the late 90's, MGM Studios Theme Park, Orlando, FL.  What started out as a regular day for me turned magical with the flip of a plastic coin.

Backstage we were all getting ready for set. You and your family were probably just coming into the park.  Like most you found your way to my set.  It was ten minutes until set time, so I got myself ready.  By this time you were already in line, waiting wide eyed with anticipation.  You must not have know which direction I would enter from as you were looking straight ahead.  I gave everyone the signal to hush and not give my presence away.  They complied.  I tip toed right up behind you and placed my hands over your face.  You gasped.  I lifted my hands away and turned myself towards you, but you just stared with mouth frozen open.  Then after what seemed like a short eternity of you standing completely still... you blurted out a hello and immediately went into your obviously preparedness of meeting me.  You showed me your wallet that you brought containing your life savings.  You also had something for me in that wallet.  Something that you had saved all year to give to me.  Inside your tiny blue, what appeared to be plastic wallet, you pulled out a rather large coin.  It was plastic and was made to look like a USA Silver medal (downhill skiing).  One of those prizes from a cereal box.  I was thrilled.  You just wanted to meet me and give me the gift you had brought from home.  It was one of the most magical moments I had, and I've had many magical moments.  But this was special.  You made me realize how special I was.  How lucky I was to be doing what I did.  I was speechless (as usual).  So I held it to my heart in a show of thanks.  But then you wanted to walk away.  So I nudged my assistant to get your parents to take a photo.  I hope that memory is still magical for you.  I'm guessing you are in your early twenties now.  Most say I still look the same, but I don't like to talk about my age.  I hope life has treated you well.  You made a regular day in the park for me quite magical, thank you.

I still have the coin.