If I had a nickel for every time someone said that to me during my life, I’d ….. well, let’s just say I wouldn’t be constantly searching the Internet for cheap economy flights to Munich. Instead, I’d be traveling in style. First Class seats, all the way.
Today is the day before Easter, and the girls and I watched The Pacifier with Vin Diesel. Have you seen it? One of the subplots is about the boy in the family struggling with his desire to act rather than be on the wrestling team. The musical he tries out for? Sound of Music, of course. Vin Diesel becomes the director of the production as part of his nanny duties. It’s hilarious.
Guess what’s on tomorrow night on ABC Family? A Julie Andrews double feature: Mary Poppins followed by the Sound of Music. It’s about time, don’t you think? After all, they haven’t shown it since Super Bowl Sunday.
There was a time in my life when this kind of thing would fill me with dread. I knew the days that followed would bring an onslaught of questions from my peers. (Ok, it was in high school, when the last thing you want to be known for is being related to characters in a musical.) I remember one year, responding simply with a number, reflecting how many questions I got that day… 27, 28, 29.
But things change. Just the other day, I was in the post office buying stamps the other day. As I handed over my debit card, the clerk glanced at my name and commented the usual “von Trapp? As in the Sound of Music?” It felt different this time. I said “yes!” with purpose. She said “Really? How are you related?” I replied with my standard, “My father was the oldest of the original seven children.” But this time I added something. “I’m writing a blog about it, if you’re interested.” I wrote the website address down for her. “Thanks! I’ll do that.”
With maturity comes the realization that sometimes, in order to be successful, we need to leverage all the advantages God gave us. I guess in my case, that includes being born into a family whose name opens some doors. Where we take those advantages is up to us. – F.v.T.
PS - Here's a challenge: how often do you notice references to the Trapp Family or The Sound of Music in television shows or movies? Next time you hear one, make a note of it and post it here. I'll bet you'll be surprised at how many there are.