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April 30th, 2003 - Open Knowledge — LiveJournal

Apr. 30th, 2003

03:32 pm - Definition of classy

Courtesy of technomom


Posted on Tue, Apr. 29, 2003
Shining moment for Cheeks and 13-year-old girl made us proud
Knight Ridder Newspapers

PHILADELPHIA -(KRT) - There she stood at center court, this little girl with the big, big voice, poised for the moment of a lifetime, the house lights dimmed, 20,000 people waiting expectantly for her, 20,000 people ready to hear her sing . . .

. . . and the words wouldn't come.

They lodged in her throat and couldn't be budged, no matter how mightily she strained. It was the song she knew by heart, the one she had heard a million times, the one she had sung over and over and over, the very one that she had rehearsed in a dressing room perfectly - every single run-through dead solid perfect - only minutes before, for heaven's sake. But now the words all tumbled over each other, crazy-quilted in a jumbling, confusing mish-mash:

"rocket's last gleaming ... twilight's red glare ... flag's not there ... oh say can you see ... yet wave . . .

She wanted to disappear, of course. She wanted the floor to open up and swallow her. Or a spaceship to beam her up and carry her off. Natalie Gilbert, a 13-year-old eighth grader, was living the nightmare each of us, in moments of morbid, fearful imagining, has conjured.

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