03 November 2006

Because I have to write this down before I start forgetting: Wake Up Call!

Where do I even start to tell you of my early morning adventures?
This morning the Shimmy Sisters, my bellydance troupe, was set to be interviewed and then perform on KVLY TV for their morning show. Great. Good--publicity, not good--early morning. I am not a morning person.
Nonetheless, the plan was to get up VERY early, get ready to go, and then to meet at Rita's so we could ride together, she and I.
So, I followed the plan. I got up just after 5am (who know there was a 5am?!--last time I saw 5am I was on my way to summer camp). I got into all of my layers of costume, put on the special toxic makeup I use only for shows, and prayed that my starvation diet of the past two days did something to alleviate all of the fat on my stomache.
I arrived at Rita's four minutes late--6:04am. And I knock on the door. I ring the door bell. I knock, I ring, I knock, I ring. I am starting to worry. And it is very frosty out this morning. And I am not wearing many clothes, as you might imagine.
I start calling the various phones in Rita's life. The cell phone. The cell phone again. I knock, I ring, I call, I ring, I knock. Finally, I get over the fear of Rita's husband, and I call their home line. I hear their phone ring. I am looking in the window. It is 6:07. The next thing I see is Rita, flying down her steps, naked all but for undies, holding her boobs, and screaming "Oh my god, oh my god oh my god oh my god."
She opens the door (yes, she's naked, but it's 5am, its dark)
"What, did you forget to set your alarm?"
Rita, bewildered and frightened and also naked: "No, I set my alarm, but I must have set it wrong."
She disappears. Things begin flying. Music is flying, Ipods are flying, speakers are flying, I am hearing the sound of hangers, beads, jingly things, feet running amuck, and Rita is speaking to herself the entire time.
People--at this point I am honestly wondering if Rita has gone crazy. I'm not kidding. She was talking to herself in a really weird, whispery sort of way:
"Pants. Why can't I find a god damn pair of pants!!??"
There are brassieres, pants, fabric, coins, dresses flying everywhere?
"Rita--we are late. We are going to be late for our interview and dance segment. We have to go. You have to put a dress on and just call it good." Fine.
Rita didn't have time to get dressed.
She also didn't have time to grab shoes.
So naked, shoeless Rita and myself jump in my car.
And I start driving. Very fast. Because we are very late. and I am praying "God please don't let there be any cops" because 1) I am driving fast and 2) Rita has no clothes on. And Rita is scurrying around and slithering around and trying to get her costume on. And she has no pants. And no shoes. And I am driving fast. And we are late.
And we get stuck. in traffic. behind a tractor. (only in North Dakota is a tractor a part of anyone's morning commute) and Rita is screaming "I'm naked, oh my god, I'm naked and we're in traffic."
And I can barely drive because I am also screaming and laughing and praying and checking my cell phone every five seconds to see what time it was.
Right before we arrive in the studio, Rita manages to clothe herself (except for pants and shoes which she doesn't have). We met our fellow dancer, Britta, and then realized that by some miracle, all of us had managed to wear coordinating outfits.
So, we think we're going to be interviewed. We scurry into the studio right before we have to start. And I realize "Rita is completely freaked out right now. And if Rita gets interviewed right now when she is this frazzled, she is going to swear."
"Rita--you can't say f***. You can't say that--this is live TV. You can't say s***. You can't say ANYTHING bad."
A look of realization crosses her face.
Suddenly the lady is interviewing this other dude and we end up not needing to be interviewed at all, which I think was a blessing, given the circumstances. Rita's dress covered her legs despite the lack of pants, my stomache didn't look too fat, and we managed to get through the dance looking fairly respectable, considering the circumstances.
So, that is the story of Rita's bellydance-TV wake-up call, and my story of how insane it is to be in a car with a naked, screaming, hysterical woman whilst stuck behind a tractor in road construction morning traffic.
I hope you enjoyed our segment today.