I concluded my Labor Day weekend Sunday night with a visit to the Minnesota State Fair. While I enjoyed my annual menu of cheese curds, Pronto Pup, ice cream and Sweet Martha's cookies, I also enjoyed a new fair tradition of sorts. For the second year in a row, I attended the finals of the amateur talent competition.
For some reason, this talent show—particularly the pre-teen and teen categories—is nostalgic for me. When I was the age of these competitors, I may not have had quite the singing, dancing, piano playing or yo-yo tossing skills they have, but I had a huge desire to be a performer. And perform I did! It might have started in second grade when Jen and I, along with another friend, did a dance “recital” to Sandi Patty songs. (God bless our parents and our Sunday School teacher for suffering through that performance in my parents’ basement!)
What followed was several more years of grade-school talent show performances including dances to songs by Tiffany, New Kids on the Block and Madonna. And I put my vocal skills on display through numerous performances in church musicals, summer camp talent shows and school choir. Some of these performances were darn good! All of my rehearsing with friends in front of the bathroom mirror with hairbrush microphones really paid off! And I did join some girlfriends in a quartet for a lesser-known State Fair talent competition sponsored by the old Crossroads Chapel in high school where we took second place.
As I drove home from the fair late Sunday night, I found myself singing (loudly) in my car that very song that we performed at the State Fair 16 years ago. And I was so pumped that I actually remembered my part! I belted out harmonies to Point of Grace’s The Great Divide and let my mind wander to many of these other performances from over the years.
Dare I ask what talent you would perform if participating in a talent show today? What's your claim to fame? Your stupid human trick? Or, what do you wish you could do?
Enjoying others' good talent and good food was a great way to enjoy part of my holiday weekend. I hope you’re also enjoying these waning days of summer!