8/17/2010 06:04:00 pm

Puppet Fail

Posted by Tom French |

Yesterday I did a visit to a school as I was doing a talk in their infants chapel about kindness and goodness. I had never done an infants chapel before, so I thought I might do a bit of puppetry. So I went and found my old friend Ron. Ron is a friendly, blue puppet who's been in our family for a very long time. I decided to do it ventriloquist style, rather than say, to have him whisper in my ear. The upside is that Ron can say funnier things. The downside is that it's much easier to stuff up. I love puppets, but I was pretty scared of doing this. I'd never done ventriloquism in front of an audience before.

I had decided to give Ron an Irish accent so as to differentiate his voice from mine. On the way down in the car, it worked perfectly. Ron was sounding like a Dublin native. It was brilliant. Unfortunately, I wasn't performing on the way down in the car. When it came time for me to stand up in front of the kids, I'd completely forgotten how to do an Irish accent. I stood up there and all that would come out was this demented Ernie-voice. And while I could have gotten away with that, the first thing I did when Ron came out of the bag is have Ron tell everyone that he was from Ireland. Dumb. And while the kids probably had no idea my accent wasn't anything like anyone from anywhere, the parents and teachers in the room could definitely tell that I was doing what was probably the worst Irish accent they had ever heard. It was a little embarrassing.

Oh, well you know, as Jesus said: "Those who suck at puppetry are sometimes competent in other areas." Or perhaps that was fake-Jesus. Thanks fake-Jesus, you minister to my wounded heart.

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