August 4, 2009

First of all I want to thank everyone for your kind comments. I am so grateful for all of you!
Since I’ve had too many posts about my health lately, I thought I’d take a different direction for a few days.
Recently my friend Brodi Ashton (author of soon to be published—Echo—a YA Novel about an unwilling alien hunter in Blackfoot, ID) blogged about her Prom. What thoughts come to your mind when you think of PROM?
I don’t know where Morgan’s Junior Prom traditions originated, but they are something out of the South, or a movie, or maybe a galaxy far, far away. Regardless of where they came from they were as solid as the M on the mountain above the High School.
So why was Morgan Junior Prom so different from anything I’ve ever seen anywhere else?
1. The Opportunity. (I actually think this part is pretty cool.) Junior Prom is for Juniors, and as such, every girl in the Junior class is asked to the Prom. There was a committee set up to make sure that this happened. Sometimes girls refused the “charity date” but I don’t know any in my class who did. Paul Ordyna, one of my best friends in High School, asked me to the Junior Prom over the course of three weeks. I knew it was him from the beginning, but played the game because that’s what you do. When I answered him by burying a little plastic yes in a bottle of pickled pigs feet he immediately said, “I love those things!” opened the jar and scarffed them down until he found the yes.

2. The Transformation. After the dates were set, weeks of work began. We voted on a theme, chose decorations, and then the PE classes were forced outdoors so we could transform the gym into something akin to the Under the Sea Dance in Back to the Future. It wasn’t that bad, but seriously, I can’t believe how much money was spent to decorate the gym. Why the gym? I know other schools go to fancy places—like the Toyota Dealership (really!). My sister’s class tried to move her Prom off site and the administration went bonkers. Why? See #9.
3. The Rehearsal. Did you rehearse for your prom? We did, at least 5 times in the weeks leading up to the big day. I can still see Mrs. Morrison shaking her head and rolling her eyes at us. Why rehearse? See #9.
4. The Dress. Now I know you spent a lot of time picking that perfect dress out at David’s Bridal, but Morgan Junior Prom was different. Mothers all over the county dusted off their sewing machines to create the shimmeriest, closest to in-style, puffed sleeved gown you’ve ever seen. I am still amazed that my mom could pull it off, and I always thought it was a pretty cute dress, until two years ago, my niece took it out of the dress up box, put her hair in a side ponytail and had the coolest Halloween Costume EVER! (She was Deb from Napoleon Dynamite) My Dad thought this was hilarious! He had me pose like I got stood up. How nice is that?
5. The All Day, Wear You Out, Marathon. My young women fondly called this “the daytime activity”. I’ve decided not to leave my opinion about “daytime activities”, because that opinion makes me sound really old! I always had a great time with Paul. If you know him, you know that he had more energy than a nuclear power plant. We went to the 49th Street Galleria, and if it wasn’t loud and fast and bigger than life, it wasn’t Paul. We had a blast and I was grateful that I got to go with him.But, I came home so tired I just wanted to go to sleep. Instead I got ready.
6. The Hair. Come on it was early nineties! Big Hair was IN!

7. The Dinner. When we arrived at Mulboons I knew Paul was into this date big time. He waved his Dad’s credit card and said, “Get whatever you want. I am!” And we did—shrimp, steak, some fancy pina colada drink. Mulboons was definitely the fanciest restaurant I’d ever been to. And guess what, every other kid from Morgan High School was there with us.

8. The Dance. I thought the prom was about dancing. I was a little naïve because I’d never been to the Morgan Junior Prom before (unlike every other classmate of mine—as spectators). When we walked down the hall to the gym we passed a lineup of at least 500 adults (there were only 134 kids in my class). I wondered why they were all there, even though everybody had told me why. Sure we’d rehearsed, but it wasn’t until we got to the gym and saw the bleachers pulled out and filled with 500 more people with video cameras and flash bulbs that realization hit. Paul and I danced ONE DANCE, AND ONLY ONE DANCE before I learned what Morgan High School Junior Prom is all about—the Promenade.
9. The Promenade. I don’t think a whistle blew, but it felt like it. Suddenly Paul pulled away from me and dashed to his assigned spot on the opposite side of the gym. I scrambled to where I’d been told during rehearsal and stood in shrouds of shadows while two by two (except for the groups of three) my friends from Kindergarten walked down the red carpet into the blaring spotlight. I felt sick. I know we’d practiced, but I didn’t think there would be a thousand people in the stands watching us! Soon I was “on deck” and somebody shoved me from behind. I stumbled to the head of the red carpet where I linked arms with Paul and we walked down the red carpet to applause in the form of cowbells and megaphones. Theoretically I should have heard, “Way to go Anne!” Instead I heard “Way to go Amy!” Why? Because Amy was the girl on Paul’s other arm. You see, Amy had a boyfriend from Henefer, and since only Morgan High School students are allowed in the Promenade girls like Amy were farmed out to nice guys like Paul—not to mention uncomplaining girls like me! Sure it seems sweet, but looking back it seems a little Colorado Cityish. We walked into the spotlight while they read our names and flashes of light blinked around the crowd. I don’t know who was taking pictures, my parents certainly weren’t there. When the spotlight circled back to the next couple Paul pushed me toward my side of the gym where we waited until the Promenade was over and they cleared the bleachers for the big group picture. Yes this is my entire graduating class. And most of them went to Kindergarten with me too!
10. The Paparazzi. Paul was raised in a family with one sister and I think six brothers. When all the logistics were over and everybody was ditching the dance for their “after the dance party”, Paul and I tried to dance one more time, but three brothers circled us, the video camera two inches from my face. Soon Paul couldn’t handle it anymore. Me neither, there were old people dancing EVERYWHERE! Paul grabbed me by the hand and we were out of there.

That was really the end of the date because of an unfortunate argument I had with Paul’s friend. I still feel bad about that Paul & Elijah (if you ever read this), but now that I’m a mom and have seen my kids when they’re tired I think I would’ve done better if I’d had a nap.
So why the Prom? I don't know, I just thought it was a fun thing to blog about. So here's your challenge. Post about your Prom. What did you wear? What was it like? I want to read about it. Good luck!


Josi said...

I never went to prom, BUT this sounds just like the Milford jr. prom. My family moved there a year after I got married, so I didn't get to participate, but my siblings did and we were invited to the promenades. I thought it was awesome--what fun memories.

Love the dress--I had one very similar for my 9th grade graduation, but it was green with a big fabric rose on one shoulder :-)

Di said...

Oh I am definitely posting about this! At least your dress was pink and your dates dad didn't say "well... you won't have to buy a wedding dress." AHhh!!! Also, I must have been way luckier than you. We got to have Promenade in the auditorium. I guess the seats were cushier for all the old fogies. I love you! I hope you had a wonderful Birthday. I thought about you all day and through my excruciatingly long flight! Looks like I really am on the three week plan. See you soon! :)

Karla said...

It took me awhile to find you in the group photo. Are you close to the edge on the left?
It was fun to read about your prom!

Rip Curl Mom said...

I laughed so hard while reading this! I think Morgan might have been from another time zone! So over the top. But I love your dress (I had a few like it) and I LOVE your hair (I am a big hair early 90's girl too). I am definitely posting about my prom. Though I think it might have been dull compared to yours!

Amie said...

Oh, junior prom. . . I went with Zach and had the hair (sort of--I was a "Granola Girl" with lots of curls :)and the puffed sleeves, too. Thanks for reminding me of the happy memories. :) Hope you have a beautiful week.

Paulina Kasmer said...

this is the funniest thing i have ever read!

oh - your dress! my first big dance dress was bright pink with flowers! it was the only thing i was allowed to wear - i should have stayed home! can you picture me in a pink lace flower dress! mark still threatens me with pictures to this day!

a promenade! i have never heard of this! when i become president of the pta i am for sure making ruby jane do this!

oh - anne - how i love you!

Ronda Hinrichsen said...

So cute, fun, and daring! I don't think I'd dare put my pictures up like that. It was fun to read yours, though.

K.Booth said...

Anne, You were one styling babe. Those sleeves, just take me back. And the white shoes, where have all the good white shoes gone? I was always jealous of the big hair, my hair was to thin and short to be a real contender. I laughed that your date ate the pickled pig feet.....so gross!! va

Scott and Kourt said...

Wow, Morgan goes all out for their dances. I love the 49th street galleria. That was my favorite place. I only went to one dance in high school and that was a girls choice dance. I am glad that you had a great time. Morgan seems to be a great place to live.

Holly said...

I didn't go to the Prom either. (and believe me, not having a date invitation was some insufferable trial to me as a jr and sr in high school-- don't worry, I survived- though I was doubtful at the time)

So what I take from this post is random but here it is-- I am kicking myself because ROarke and I are throwing a halloween bash and this year's theme is famous couples- a kind of love fest. I have looked up and down the internet for a creative idea and have been stumped-- or have had to end my search at the findings of good cop/bad cop...and the like. So, unoriginal downright boring, I've decided on Clark Kent and Lois Lane. After reading your post- I wish I hadn't already bought costume components-- because how funny it would have been to be Napoleon Dynamite and his girl (what's her name?). I could have rocked that side ponytail and been more convincing as a high school misfit than as a reporter. (especially since I'll be the plus size version of Lois Lane)


Brodi Ashton said...

Oh Anne- you are a crack up! So much funnier than my post. I loved it.