This morning when I awoke, lying next to me was a German woman. As I write this she is across the room reciting counsel to a monarch of some sort.
Last week it was a British florist. And next week I’ll apparently be married to a French maid. Maybe Irish potato farmer. We’ll see.
For those who may not know – allow me to explain. MDT is Music Dance Theater. You know? “Life’s a drama and all the worlds a stage!” But for these people, so is the classroom. In short:
My wife’s a thespian.
(Sorry to out you, dearest, but we should be proud of our life choices. It’s 2015 for crying out loud!)
Imagine your spouse kisses another man/woman. Your reaction? Anger. Heartbreak. Tears. Maybe you go home and burn their childhood treasures. Me? Well – typically I clap and cheer, and then reward her with flowers after the show’s over.
It’s a strange world I live in, folks.
The thing about performers is that, by very nature of their craft, they have to be in-tune with every speck of human emotion. Middle ground is unheard of – If they’re happy, then they’re happier than you or I (the audience) have ever been. If they’re sad, well, better call Noah because the flood of tears is on it’s way. In fact, you might just want to call him regardless – Once these MDT’ers learn to cry on command they’ll whip out the water works every chance they get.
One time, shortly after we were married, my dear parents took us out for dinner. My wife was sitting next to my mother and got bored. Her solution? Entertain herself by framing me. Instantly calling tears to her eyes — I think she visualizes sad puppies or something but whatever she does, she can go from dry eyes to crocodile tears in approximately 1.25 seconds — She turns to me the conversation went something like this:
Her: “Why would you say that?!”
Me: *mouthful of sweet pork salad* “mmmpphhrr?”
Her: *tears flowing down her cheeks* “Why would you be so mean?!” *cheats out so that my mother can clearly see the tears*
Mother: “What did you do? *sees tears* JARED JEFFERY! I RAISED YOU BETTER THAN THIS!”
Her: *winks from behind the maternal wrath*
Repeat this situation at church, in school, with friends, you know; basically any public venue where in the potential for embarrassment is high.
Now on the topic of embarrassment. Being embarrassed is something of a healthy social construct. I don’t mean public shaming or harassment, but simply that the threat of being embarrassed keeps us commoners (the audience) from doing a lot of foolish things. This, as I have found, puts us at a disadvantage. For those who live on stage, embarrassment is not in their vocabulary.
To explain: Another weapon in the thespian arsenal is their voices. Like vocal ninjas they train day and night to hone their craft which somehow involves: belts or belting or something, passaggios (I think that’s a cheese), mix (mixing? mixes? I don’t know. It’s all very secretive) and scales. They use these tools along with their immunity to embarrassment with deadly results.
If, lets say, you’re in a store and your MDT’er wants to get ice cream: Now she’s got two tubs of other flavors at home, so you suggest that it might be a good idea to finish those first. Cue the warble-y, mock-80-year-old-church-choir voice. The singing will continue until your resolve crumbles of embarrassment. If you try to hold out strong, they’ll add in props and blocking.
But mostly life as a MDT Trophy husband is fantastic. It’s hard to imagine someone able to express love more deeply than those who train constantly to emote. I regularly get to see amazing performances put on by people who have thrown caution (and their nights and weekends) to the wind in pursuit of their dreams. Some of them headed to Broadway, others live for the jubilation of thunderous applause. Some, like my wife, simply cannot contain their desire to share their story.
Yes, the only dull moments in this household are when everyone’s fast asleep. That is, unless someone mistook sleeping pills for the ibuprofen they needed to counteract Modern Marathon. But that’s a story for another day.