The chaotic life and times of runner/actress/teenager.
Thursday, November 4, 2010
Everybody needs their own cheerleader. Someone there to acknowledge your hard work with a pat on the back or a well deserved round of applause. Through the years I have learned that you gain your own fans by becoming fans of others, and I’ve had my fair share of supporting my friends and family in whatever it is they do.
Three of the best cheerleaders I’ve had were a few post-secondary athletes who came to a 3000m race in which a few friends and I were competing in this past summer. Imagine three people head-to-toe in blue and yellow, our running clubs colours, and proudly waving a giant flag with our club logo on it. It gets better - at one point they ran through the stands in an attempt to get the small, early morning crowd to join them in their cheering. I’m not sure if I’ve ever seen someone with more team spirit than those three!
There’s nothing better than feeling your voice disappear after a day of cheering on your teammates. Nothing brings a team closer together than encouraging one another… and the occasional social event! Our running club has really grown and evolved over the years, and so have the friendships within it. The current junior girls are a really close knit group, and never cease to amaze me with their fabulous personalities. This past August we organized the first “LRDC Girls Night Out”. It was a bit of a celebration of our friendship, as well as a goodbye party to the older girls who were heading off to University in the following days. No ‘Girls Night’ is complete without a water gun fight (only begun because no one wanted their hair wet), dropping cake on a porch deck, or decorating sports bras with blue and yellow to display our LRDC pride!
We girls of LRDC have also become quite creative with our Halloween workout costumes. Every year, generally on the Saturday before Halloween, our club has a Halloween themed workout- which is really an intense workout run in ridiculous costumes. I can recall one member dressed as an elderly man going so far as running with the cane he had brought. Last year the girls were beauty pageant queens with a twist. Instead of “Miss America”, or “Miss Canada”, we were words out of a dictionary (“Miss Matched, Miss Fit, Miss Calculated, ect.). Some of the costumes were quite creative! This year was a little more difficult. Every year we try to think of a theme that we can all pull off as a group. This year it was recommended by one of the girls that we should be elements of the periodic table, and I suggested we use the elements to try and spell something. So we came up with the phrase “CaTcH US IF Uuu CaN”- ten glorious elements of the periodic table.
The casts I’ve worked with during shows have been as enthusiastic and supportive as my fellow club members. In the theatrical world, being in a close and friendly cast produces more chemistry on stage - as well as an overall better experience! There are certain traditions that travel from cast to cast, such as warm fuzzies. Warm fuzzies begin with empty envelopes - one for each cast mate - and blank paper. The empty pieces of paper are then filled by members of the cast with kind and flattering thoughts towards other cast mates - giving everyone a warm and fuzzy feeling. I’ve also been in theatre companies before where the tradition is to give each cast and crew member either an opening or closing night gift. I recall writing a funny poem and printing it onto bookmarks for a cast a couple of years ago.
Whether it’s in a club, a cast, your neighbourhood, or simply your friends and family, supporting one another is one of the most important things you can do. This past summer, my coach mentioned to me how important it is to root for one another - or to simply be present during the time of their performance. Having someone who is knowledgeable about what you’re doing in your midst may in fact boost your performance level. It’s comparable to the determination I have to succeed if a critic came to see a show of mine, or a university coach was there to watch a race - and it can be applied to almost anything you do in life. Through my own experiences, I’ve learned that every actor needs their fan club, and every athlete needs their jock supporters.
I’d like to thank everyone who helped me out these past few weeks in both the production of Dracula, which opened and closed this Halloween weekend, as well as qualifying for 2010 cross country OFSAA - which I’ll be racing this Saturday - and to those team mates who made adjustments this week to attend the “special” Tuesday/Thursday workouts. Thank you to all my cheerleaders!