Are we still hillbillies if we grew up in Northwest Ohio, where there are no hills, but rather fields spanning for miles?
Bah. Anyway, last week (before my gender rant), I talked about gymnastics, and the Magnificent 7. After talking with my cousins, I remembered some of the ways in which that gymnastics team affected us.
We played gymnastics day in and day out on my grandparents’ farm in Clyde. The side yard was our floor exercise. The swing set was our uneven bars. And a picnic bench served as both the vault and the balance beam. Mostly, it was the Big Kids who were playing. It was a privilege–no lil kids allowed.
So Heidi, Heather, Meghan and I played gymnastics. Of course, we weren’t smart enough to drag a radio out to the yard for the floor exercise music. Instead, we had Heidi or Heather (who are musically talented–much more so than me) sing the songs they sang in choir class every day. I distinctly remember, “If I were a rich man…” and something about a chimney… And something phonetically sounding like, “Ama llama kooma llama kooma llama viste…”
Ha, what the hell?
And I’m not sure any of us could actually do a cartwheel properly. My knees were always bent. I was never in a straight line, and more often than not, I think I fell on my ass. I do know that one day, I spent hours perfecting a one handed cartwheel. I don’t know how good it looked…but I know I did it!
We each took on the personalities of the Magnificent 7. Meghan was always Shannon Miller. Me, tubby little me, wanted to be the petite Dominique Moceanu, and other times, I wanted to be Kim Zmeskal. I’m not sure Heidi and Heather cared who they were. Often they were the judges, because after all, they were the oldest of the Big Kids.
Balance checks to snotty looks, to not having our toes pointed, we scored each other because we wanted to be the Magnificent 7 (4?).
That was freaking fun. We ought to bust out our ribbon dancers are reunite for a final meet. I’ll bring the picnic bench. Oh, and um, some beer.