The older next-door neighbor girls convinced us that sitting in the front yard making clover chains was the way to be discovered. If we smiled, tucked our knees neatly under our gingham dirndls, or had a nice suntan, a photographer from the Lincoln Journal would surely drive past and be captivated by our youthful innocence, industry, and enthusiasm.
The photographers never drove down our street during clover chain season, nor during our marathon endeavors making "Chinese" jump ropes from linked rubber bands. On the positive side, the Lincoln Journal paperboy would ride by on his bike to donate his extra rubber bands and notice how nicely our suntanned knees looked tucked beneath our checked dirndls. We would notice how nicely suntanned he was from delivering newspapers, too.
Tom Mix was allegedly discovered on a barstool in a main street saloon in Guthrie, Oklahoma. At least that was the story told me by a bored bartender on a dusty afternoon when I was the only patron having my leg pulled in the joint. Since I'd never heard of Tom Mix I wasn't properly impressed with this tall tale. "Tom Mix" is such a fabulous name of brevity, bravado, easy-spelling, and small town possibility. However the cowboy made the alleged jump to silent films, he's given a boost to my imagination for over two decades.
Twas Lana Turner who was mythologized for her Hollywood discovery in a soda shop. The tiny caterpillar I found on my cypress vine would rather not be mythologized or live under the camera's eye. It would rather not be the inspiration for new lesson plans and art projects. That fame doesn't predict long life and uneventful metamorphizing.
© 2010 Nancy L. Ruder