Friday, May 21, 2010
Flashback Friday, Hot Flashes and Other Flashes You Don't Want to Miss. Or Maybe You Do.
Here's Linda's prompt this week:
Tell about your senior year in high school. Were there any special traditions such as getting a senior ring? Were there lots of activities and parties as you neared graduation? Were you in any extra-curricular activities that had traditional "rites of passage" or "passing the baton" too the next class? Were awards given out - either serious or fun? Did you send out graduation announcements? Did your school have a Baccalaureate Service in addition to the graduation ceremony? If you attended church, did your church recognize/honor Seniors in any way? Did you keep your tassel - did you hang it from the mirror of your car or do something else special with it? What sorts of things did you get for graduation gifts? Was it a tradition to display the gifts in your home?
First of all, let me say there's nothing like having a menopausal hot flash exactly at the moment you're posting a Flashback Friday entry. Go, me! Awesome!
So if I'm a bit cranky today, that is why.
I was also cranky my entire senior year because after having been a cheerleader throughout school, I was inexplicably cut in that year's tryouts.
So even though I knew I was going to college to become a high school English teacher, I joined a business group called DECA that allowed me to leave at noon every single day and work at the mall in a store called Stuarts.
Which, may I add here in a sentence fragment, allowed me to purchase lots of clothes, which will be relevant in a moment. Thus, I did not take senior Shakespeare, which upon entering college soon did biteth me in the "Bottom," who we all know was actually a Shakespearean character transformed into an "ass." Yes, if the moniker fits, etc.
Did I mention I was also grieving the loss of a previous boyfriend I dearly loved who had gone off to college and had already himself transformed into that same character?
So I sulked my entire senior year and dated a boy who was not good for my moral development. (Not Jorge.)
Where was I?
Back to fashion. So because I worked in a cool clothing store, I had nice clothes and was voted "Best Dressed Girl" and "Cutest Blonde" in our senior elections. I ended up marrying the guy voted "Best Male Body," although he HATES for me to tell people. So I mention it whenever I can.
Here are the ancient, dilapidated school newspaper results of the elections. Yes, that is the Jorge. Jorge the Jabanero. No, he is not Hispanic. That was his name in Spanish class.
And then I graduated. My parents tried to take a couple of pictures, but we were mostly unsuccessful with cameras back in the day, producing snapshots eerily close to the quality of the ones I keep producing of my kid running on the cross country team. It's a genetic gift. So I don't have any good ones at my disposal.
One highlight of the ceremony itself was that I spoke at commencement. From the stage, I noticed my manager at Stuarts in the audience making strange hand motions, sort of like the ones to the song "Deep and Wide." In a moment of humiliating clarity, I finally understood she was signaling: "CLOSE YOUR LEGS." Yes, apparently my gown did not cover my lower extremities very well. As a result, I flashed the audience for the longest few minutes of my life.
We had open houses back then, something similar to a gift-giving shower for graduates, including cake and mints, etc. Nowadays, these events have escalated to epic proportions resembling lavish MGM productions here in the Midwest. You would not believe the amount of planning and money spent on these, complete with "shrines" depicting the stages of graduates' lives from infancy to 18. Yes, I have produced two of these open houses myself for Katie and Jordan. Two down, one to go next year.
Don't know where the tassel is now. It was not my best moment, not my best year, but there you have it, and I would not go back and re-live it for anything, including trading off menopausal hot flashes.
At least if I "flash" people now, I'm fully cognizant before the flashing. I just don't care. Ah, the beauty of aging.