Friday Angst

Ah, the angst of the high school dance. Is there anything worse than Homecoming? Let’s take a moment to cringe at the outfits, the slow songs (Titanic theme, anyone?), the sobbing girls, the throbbing feet…

October 14, 1996, Monday, 1:53 pm

(Age 15)

Sara wrote to say that she has a date to Homecoming. She described him as a “short, blond, and blue-eyed.” He’s in band and was on the kayaking trip she took with the boy-scouts.

Meanwhile, my homecoming is the 26th. I don’t have a date. I don’t even have a dress yet. I don’t know if I really want to go to watch other people dance with their boyfriends. Maybe I’ll just stay home and do homework.

October 31, 1996, Thursday, 9:00 pm

(Still age 15)

Homecoming night was October 26. I wore a red velvet dress and my hair was pulled up in a French-twist. I had spent nearly four hours at the mall the day before in search of shoes, and I removed them about an hour into the dance.

When I first arrived, Molly and Susan were standing outside comforting Emily, who was sobbing. Her boyfriend is in middle school, and he was stopped at the door. The teachers claimed to have announced that no one in middle school was allowed at the dance, but no one heard the announcement.

Megan could not find her date. They had been set up by her friend’s boyfriend and, later, when I met Jim (her date) I realized why she was not looking for him. His face was covered in pimples and he had a fuzzy orange goatee. When he became bored, Jim stole a liter bottle of Orange Slice from the snack table and nursed it in the corner. Megan was relieved to discover that he had a girlfriend–especially when he went home without telling her. (NOTE: Never go out with a Jim or a Bob!!!)

Meanwhile, Molly came up to me and said, “Chris is going to ask you to dance. He said, ‘I’m thinking of asking someone to dance. She’s wearing a red dress and has long brown hair. She sits in front of me in Geometry.’ I said, ‘Lara?’ and he said, ‘Yeah. Do you think she likes me?'”

Before you start getting all uptight about MY reaction, I’ll give you some background so you can make your OWN reaction. Chris, who sits behind me in Geometry, is about 19 years old. He sits with his legs crossed and his chin in his hand. He wears the same shirt every day and sometimes wears cowboy boots.

My first reaction was: “I’m going to the bathroom.”

All my “friends” immediately pounced, and said, “It’s only a dance! Don’t be a snob!”

I’m not a snob! If I don’t like Chris and he makes me uncomfortable, I shouldn’t dance with him. Luckily, Chris never asked me to dance because he found his true love ten minutes later.

She was wearing a wedding dress.


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