3AM And All’s Well


It’s Tuesday. Nothing monumental happened today. It’s supposed to snow tonight, but not too much.

It snowed last Friday night into Saturday morning, making the rural roads icy in spots. That’s not so bad during the day when you can see the slick spots ahead, but driving at night can be tricky. I happened to be out Saturday night – no, wait, it was actually Sunday morning at 3AM. Our high school’s music department hosted their annual show choir competition, “Touch Of Class” and I volunteered to help. I signed up to lend a hand in the kitchen starting at 6PM. I was a food server – they put me in charge of the ice cream machine. All night, until the kitchen closed, I dispensed soft serve ice cream into little cups. Not an unpleasant job to say the least. I also signed up for clean-up and tear down. Now that was a job! Again, not unpleasant, but man oh man is the equipment they use ever complicated! Lights and curtains and risers and platforms and chairs and speakers and so on and so forth. The gentleman who brought in the equipment really knows his stuff (I think he’s from Kansas – at least the license plate on his truck was) and he handled the organized chaos beautifully. Speaking of beautiful, the show choir competition was spectacular! High school choirs from all over Iowa (and one from Nebraska) put on shows that were colossal and over-the-top impressive. From the sets (which their crews had to put up and tear down in minutes) to the music and choreography it was an incredibly dazzling experience. The music department brought in a video company, and they were able to show the performances over televisions that were set up all around the cafeteria. Not only that, but the day before the competition a group of volunteers came in to set up and decorate, and they made the high school look fabulous. One of the kids said it looked better than the decorations for Prom, and I believe him. Everything I encountered made me wish I’d been there all day, and I plan to volunteer for even more time next year. I hope to be able to be there all day doing whatever jobs need done. However, I think I’ll leave when they start tearing down the gym. I’m getting too old to be driving home at 3AM.

That reminds me – the music teachers who ran the event are truly heroic people. I can’t imagine the work and organization that goes into an event that big, but I think that they all deserve a ginormous reward for their extensive exertion. I’m pretty sure they were all there somewhere, but I only saw Ms. Stoddard, Mrs. Lampkin and Mr. Hayden. (It was Mr. Hayden who stayed with the tear down crew until 3AM Sunday morning. He still seemed energetic at that hour – how I don’t know. He must be nuclear powered or something.) Anyway, volunteering was thoroughly enjoyable, and I can’t wait to help again next year. I really admire the work and dedication of our high school’s music instructors. They put the class in “Touch Of Class”.


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