I blame this entirely on my mother. She’s been asking me to find some old photos of a play that I was in when I was in eighth grade. I finally went down to the basement today to see if the pictures were in a box down there. They were, so I started scanning them so that I could send her electronic copies. It didn’t take long before I was mildly obsessed with googling and facebooking my old classmates to see what had happened to some of them. One search led to another, and before I knew it I had spent the entire afternoon looking people up online, signing up for the alumni associations of my high school and undergraduate institutions, and joining classmates.com!

I went to junior high in Nederland, Texas. Nederland is a small residential community outside of Beaumont. We moved there when I was starting sixth grade. I was in the “theater arts” class in part of seventh and all of eighth and ninth grades. The seventh-grade class was just an introduction to theater arts; in eighth and ninth grades we participated in producing plays and other theatrical events. Our first play was a production of The Wizard of Oz, a one-act version based more on the book than the 1939 movie. These were the pictures that my mom wanted. I thought I’d share a few here.

Here’s Dorothy as she arrived in Oz. She’s talking to our Glinda and the munchkins:

I played the scarecrow.

My mom made my costume. If you look closely, you’ll see the striped socks that I’m wearing. I still have them. They’re not wearable, of course, but I’ve always kept them as a memento of when I first fell in love with theater.