Not cool, Emily! Yesterday, Emily of Not That You Asked (don't even pretend like you're not already reading it) wrote a little post where she divulged a little fact that I shared with her about my Christian adolescence. Yes, ok, I was a member of the Koinonia Singers, Southern Wisconsin's premier teenage Christian singing/dancing/skit-performing troupe. And yes, there were OUTFITS! Let this be a lesson to all of us--never share potentially humiliating information with a fellow blogger. Or take Melissa's approach: start all such statements with "this is off the record..."
So now I am feeling tremendous Internet pressure to cough up the goods, namely pictures of me engaging in Koinonia performances. Which is no problem since I have a scanner! A scanner which has made it so far as to have been unpacked from the box since Christmas! And no farther! And since tonight I'll be celebrating my roommate Holly's Birthday (Happy Birthday, Holly!) and tomorrow I'll be cleaning the house and baking for day 2 of the celebration, there is NO TIME for scanner hooking-up and figuring-out. So I took digital pictures of my pictures and although they are mostly blurry, I feel strongly that this is one of those times when blurry is very much my friend. It was the mid-90's, people! So these looks are not entirely my fault!
First, a bit of background. I was a part of a Campus Life youth group, which, during the summer did a 10 day tour as the Koinonia Singers. No actual talent was required to be a part of this group (hence, my involvement.) We'd spend a couple of months practicing (for there was much choreography to learn! And skit lines!) and then do a 10-day tour of Wisconsin, sometimes getting as far as Upper Michigan! Or Iowa! This tour involved a lot of time on a school bus and nights spent on church floors, in camp cabins (and I use the term "cabin" in the loosest possible sense) or in the homes of church members. So there was a lot of washing of hair and shaving of legs happening in church kitchen sinks. And there were a lot of fun non-performance activities, some more advisable (read: less life threatening) than others.
Now on to ill-advised 90's fashion! Here, I am sorry to say, is a picture of the costumes chosen for my first year on the trip, namely 1993. When we wore imitation Cross Colors outfits. Yes, it's true. White suburban Wisconsin teenagers dancing around to Michael W. Smith wearing this:
Ummm...yes, that is me in the yellow shorts there. And imitation Keds, obviously. Here we see a bit of audience-interaction fun!
And here we are performing the song that is perhaps now my least favorite song of all time: Big House. Except the "we" here does not include me. See that empty box? That's where I would have been dancing (and wearing craaaaaazy sunglasses to indicate, apparently, that this song was too cool for eyes!) had I not sprained my ankle very early in the trip. But I was dancing on it again a few days later, because there is no "ow!" in TEAM.
A photo of us performing this same number at a later date shows us executing a move that apparently called for us to put our arms straight above our heads. Because that is what everyone is doing, except me. I have my arms up to about ear level and couldn't apparently even be bothered to execute halfway decent jazz hands. This lack of commitment is probably the reason for the early end to my career in musical theater. Oh, and I CAN'T SING!
Here we have a photo of my personal favorite moment in Koinonia history. This is our final show, after our triumphant return, performed for all of our friends and family members. The skit calls for Jesse to say "Go ahead, make my day." My mother captured the moment just as Jesse realizes that he has instead said "Go to hell" in front of everyone, yet Pam and I (sitting on the box) have not yet reacted. Yes, my mom is quite the photojournalist.
Hmmmm...an extra-blurry photo of the year that we wore jumpers. Coincidence? You make the call! Here you (sort of) see me on the right singing my duet with Heather. My strategy here was to sing very quietly since Heather was actually a good singer. So really what you see here is Heather doing a solo on the Steven Curtis Chapman classic "You are a Treasure" and me basically lip synching.
And finally, I present the year of the vest and skort!
Skorts which, in hindsight, turn out to be really inappropriately short! Here we see me (far right) performing in a skit. What can that be around my wrist? Could it be a great big scrunchy? 1996, people!
So there we have a visual history of my career in Christian music-vangelism. I've left out the more interesting pictures (and by "interesting" I of course mean "self-incriminating.") I hope you enjoyed this trip down memory lane as much as I did!
Note: My email has apparently started screening my messages without my knowledge or consent. So if you've written to me recently and not heard back, it could be that I never got your message. Ha! I was not just slacking! Well, in most cases.