Today is an awards ceremony for the kids at our school who have that little something special. We’re recognizing the students who may not lead a team or achieve academic honours, but remain valued contributors to our school. I am a guest presenter at this illustrious event, which is rather like the Oscars but in a school gym. Instead of designer perfume, the air will be thick with the scents of feet and Axe body spray. Instead of diamonds and tuxedos, the honorees will sport braces and skinny jeans. Our statuettes are also made of plywood, glue, and gold paint, since our budget is miniscule compared to the Academy’s.
It’s the classiest event of the school year.
I thought I’d share with you the cheesy little script I wrote for the beginning of my presentation. I’m sharing the microphone with my colleague T. Picture us being announced as presenters, and then my colleague stepping up alone.
T: (Looks around, puzzled to be alone up there in the bright lights. She squints into the darkness.)
K: (Runs in, a bit out of breath, and dressed in a very large, hot pink gift-wrapped box with silver ribbons. A seriously huge silver bow tops her head. She smiles brightly at her colleague.)
T: (incredulously) What are you doing?
K: (perkily) What do you mean?
T (still incredulously but less patiently) What are you wearing?
K: (still perkily) Well, I got your email, the one that said “Be sure to dress up as a present,” so here I am.
T: (wryly) Um, the email said, “Be sure to dress up to present.” Like, to present the awards.
K: (blankly) Oh.
The show continues from there. I’m quite looking forward to embarrassing myself in front of the entire school. My colleague and I have decided to add a quip about the importance of close reading, since we are English teachers and that’s our thing. Being cheesy is a special skill that I’ve worked so hard to develop.
Here’s hoping the weather clears up before I leave for school. Wrestling a giant pink cardboard box in the rain sounds like a hopeless cause from all angles.
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