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Jason CELEBRATES Mozart's 200th Birthday! a TRUE STORY by Mr. E

Jason was always feeling embarrassed!

He had a front tooth that was crooked, and he was embarrasses about that. He had been really embarrassed when it happened. He went to catch a grounder while playing baseball and the ball took a bad hop and hit him square in the lip and he had to run home to put ice on it, and his tooth was never the same.

His Dad told his New York Yankee fan friend, Bill, that Jason LOVED the Brooklyn Dodgers. That embarrassed Jason too!

Bill said to Jason, "I'll bet you a milk shake that the Yankees beat the Dodgers in the World Series." Jason was even MORE embarrassed. The Dodgers had NEVER beaten the Yankees in the World Series, and Jason hated to bet, because he was always SURE he would lose.

“Oh, come on,” his father teased - “it's a friendly bet.”

As things turned out, the year was 1955, the year the Dodgers finally beat the Yankees in the World Series.

But Jason was still embarrassed when Dad's friend, Bill, bought him a big chocolate milk shake.

Now, even more than baseball, Jason loved music, especially classical music and specially especially, Mozart and the violin.

But that fall, Jason had finally convinced his mom that he didn't want to take piano lessons. He had always wanted to play the violin, but his mom thought he should play piano first. And now he was 9, and his mom and dad bought him a violin and gave him lessons.

Now he would learn to play music by his favorite composer, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart!

But none of the other kids wanted to play violin or cared about Mozart. So Jason was embarrassed about that too.

And he had been REALLY embarrassed when his friends came over to play and found him screeching away, practising on his new violin with a cloth diaper on his head!

“It's supposed to be Mozart's wig,” explained Jason, but his friends just laughed and called him "Diaper Head.” And boy, was Jason embarrassed when the story spread around the school! “Diaper head! Diaper head!” all the kids shouted.

Still, Jason LOVED Mozart and his music. For Christmas Jason found a record of Mozart's music called "Eine Kleine Nachtmusick” and a book about Mozart's life, as well as a Duke Snider baseball bat under the tree.

And in the New Year, when he found out that it was Mozart's birthday on January 27, and that Mozart would be celebrating his 200th birthday, Jason was excited. Even though he was to embarrassed to tell his friends about it, he knew that EVERYone knew that Mozart was the greatest composer who had ever lived.

When the week of January 27th came, his mom promised to bake a birthday cake for Wolfgang.

When Jason came home from school that Friday, January 27, 1955, he was REALLY excited. He could smell the rich aroma of a freshly baked cake. His mother always kept freshly baked goods on top of the refrigerator. Looking up there, he just managed to see the cake. Carefully he brought a chair over to the fridge. VERY carefully, he lifted down the cake. It was GORGEOUS!

It was a two layered, rectangular cake, covered with creamy chocolate frosting. His mother was an artist as well as a musician, and the cake was decorated with green and white frosting, with ruffles all around. In the middle in beautiful script writing were the words “Happy 2ooth Wolfgang” in beautiful green icing. The smell of the cake was so sweet and so tempting!

But Jason knew he should not touch such a masterpiece. The cake was on his mother's best crystal cut-glass platter, and he was proud that she had taken such care with the Maestro's cake! On the platter the cake fairly gleamed.

Jason was very, VERY careful when he lifted the platter back up to the top of the refrigerator. He wasn't embarrassed at all. He was proud to know he was celebrating the 200th Birthday of the greatest composer the world had ever known. Extra, EXTRA carefully, he pushed the platter back on top of the fridge.

With deep satisfaction he went to open the refrigerator door to get his after-school glass of milk. He could hardly wait until after dinner. when the cake would be brought down for dessert.

He pulled the door open feeling a strange heft from the full fridge door for a brief second.

And then an instant of sheer terror... accompanied by a loud shattering sound and a simultaneous squishing “shMUSH.”

Yellow crumbs, glossy brown and green frosting, and shimmering glass shards sat in a spectacular jumble at his feet.

Petrified and sickened with despair and embarrassment, Jason stared in horror.

HE sat down in a heap in front of the mess and sobbed great sobs. Never in his life had he been so embarrassed and humiliated as when his mother came to see what was the matter. There she saw the two great heaps - cake and boy - one just as forlorn as the other.

She smiled and pulled Jason to her in a big hug. "Oh," she laughed ruefully, "What a Terrible mess. It's okay my dear. I'm sorry.... we'll still celebrate."

But the birthday was not the same with a store-boughten cake and anyway - the next day there were ANTS in the leftover coconut frosted substitute cake.

But the WORST part was - Jason's mom and dad told ALL their friends.

Do your mom and Dad ever embarrass you by telling tales on you?

Well Jason's mom and Dad told BIG time. They told EVERYone they saw - and was Jason EVER EMBARRASSED.

But you know what? ONE of their friends worked at a University where there were to be MANY concerts celebrating MOZART'S 200TH BIRTHDAY that 200th anniversary year. They gave Jason and his mom and dad tickets to go and see a Mozart opera - The Marriage of Figaro!

And the Music was BEAUTIFUL! All the men onstage didn't wear diapers, but real white wigs.

Jason hummed and sang the music for weeks.

He was still singing it in his mind when he played baseball with his friends a week later. He was at bat and there were two strikes against him. "Come on Diaper-Head, swing the bat!" the other team taunted.

Jason swung and there was a "CRACK!" Jason was laughing as he ran the bases humming. "Bats and stones can break my bones, but ... names will never hurt me.. and Mozart is forever," he hummed to himself.

"Happy Birthday Wolfgang!" he sang out loud, stomping on homeplate.

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