Sunday, July 28, 2013


And so we enter a new decade: the 1970s. It was in this year that I made my stage debut in our first grade play, "May Day for Mother". I may have been the narrator. I was usually the narrator. But I'm sure that, standing under a big umbrella with a friend, I sang "Raindrops Keep Falling On My Head". (The song, from Butch Cassidy and the Sundance Kid, was released the year before.) As I have been told, apparently my friend and I got a false start on the song, and things ground to a halt. I then turned to our music teacher and accompanist, and said "Let's take it from the top, Mrs. Miller." Hilarity reportedly ensued, although I meant nothing funny by it. That's what they said on TV! Clearly performing was in my blood.

At some point, the Russos moved to the Washington D.C. area, perhaps in this year. I was very sad.

I began 2nd grade, with Mrs. Walden my teacher. She and I didn't get along especially well. I remember correcting something she had written on the blackboard. It was wrong, but she resented it. Perhaps I wasn't especially polite about it, but I was seven. I guess she would rather be wrong than be corrected, and would rather scold a student for impudence than praise him for catching an error. I suppose I was a cocky kid. I remember us having a spelling bee, and I lost on the word "chief", because I tried to mentally apply the "i before e except after c" rule (which is bogus even when the vowels are directly after the c). When I lost, I remember detecting unmistakable glee in Mrs. Walden's tone.

There was a summer trip to Chicago at some point...perhaps it was this year?

And in World News, the Beatles released Let It Be, their last album, and broke up. I was, as usual, totally unaware. Disney released The Aristocats, the first Disney feature that I really felt was "mine". And Stephen Sondheim found his voice on Broadway with Company, a show I'm looking forward to doing at Tennessee Rep in 2014!

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