School Dances. Treat or Trauma.

As I write this I’m sitting at school catching up on my marking.  Why am I doing so you ask?  Because I have to help set up for a school dance and an early shift of chaperoning.

I LOVED school dances.  In junior high the boys would always ask a girl to the dance.  In junior high that would mean meeting the girl at the door, paying her way in, then buying her a can of pop and a bag of chips.  It also meant that she would be expected to dance EVERY show dance with the boy who asked her.

I would plan my outfit for weeks.  If I was lucky, mom would buy me a new blouse or a new skirt.  I would spend extra attention to my “stack perm” and bust out the Lip Smacker lip gloss.  I would also give myself that extra squirt of Loves Baby Soft perfume.

Back then, the girls would sit on one side of the gym and the boys on the other.  One of the chaperones, usually the principal, would announce “girls’ choice” or “boys’ choice” and there would be a sprint towards the other side of the room.

The rules were laid out.  Girls and boys both knew what was expected of them and there were usually no hurt feelings or drama…

Or maybe there was but I never knew about it.

It was fun, and innocent and oh so exciting.

When I first started teaching and had to supervise junior high dances there was always drama.  Girls sobbing in the bathroom and boys wrestling each other in the parking lot because “so and so” called out “what’s his name”.  When did life for a teenager get so serious?

Nowadays we don’t have a lot of dances.  Students work long hours after school or the concept of a school dance just isn’t as entertaining as drinking and playing video games at a friend’s house or the bar is perceived as a livelier venue for partying on a Friday night.

It will be interesting to see how this evening’s festivities unfold


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