Fifteen years ago (oh please, I'm dating myself here) I attended my senior prom with my good friend, Bill Hatcher. Wish I had a picture to scan of that evening because I know you're all dying to see me resplendent in black fringe. No, not go-go fringe, more flapperish...got your mental picture formed? Good. My fondest memory of that evening was walking into Houston Lake Country Club the very instant AC/DC starting reminiscing about how they were shook all night long. Only John Hughes could've choreographed it better. Now I wanna watch Sixteen Candles and Pretty in Pink!
As a preteen I sincerely believed prom would be just like a John Hughes film, or even as exciting and dramatic as Footloose. I wanted to wear a baby blue gown, pin carnations to my shoulder, have my date pick me up in a Pinto, wearing a ruffled tuxedo shirt. Most of all, I wanted to join in with everyone else on the grand finale dance routine we obviously learned as a class before the big evening. Everyone synchronized? All together now...DANCE!
Warner Robins High School's Junior/Senior of 1993 was nothing like this. Yeah, there was dancing...or as I like to call it, having sex with your clothes on while standing up. Yeah, there were blue dresses--not pastel, though. These were electric blue, made more jolting by the thousands of seqins per yard. If there was a group dance number it must have taken place after I'd left for the evening. With all the other cool people. I'm just sayin'.
After staying at the prom all of 30 minutes, Bill and I headed to the party spot for the night, and because my parents read this blog I will cease discussion about all that took place at Nathan Bissette's house that evening. But just so y'all know, nothing I did involved taking off clothing of any kind, other than changing from my flapper-fringe into the more comfortable wardrobe staple that is J. Crew. Parents o' mine, are ya feeling better now? I also won't mention what all went down that evening, mostly because I don't remember all of it due to the passing of time. And why incriminate myself more than necessary? What I will mention is Brantley Harris sitting on a staircase, yelling "Cigarette!" every 2 minutes for the better part of half an hour, until I handed over one of my menthols just so he'd shut up. It worked. (Brantley's incessant cigarette whining--along with the AC/DC entrance--is the fondest memory of my prom. Yes, I know...sad. Somewhere out there is one Melissa Rosenmeier Taylor, and I know she'll agree with me on this.)
Ah, prom...it certainly wasn't a Molly Ringwald movie. How I've grown since then. (Thanks, my Jesus. Zero credit for me, all credit to Thee.)
Flashforward to 2008 and yet another prom experience for me. This past Saturday was the big night for Lee High teens here in my little corner of the world. My girls' "big sister," (who feels like my child sometimes, as she loves to annoy) was attending the dance as a senior, and Libbey & I took part in the whole getting ready frenzy that accompanies an event such as this. Kristi had two things going for her...the cutest date, also known as Caleb Bledsoe:
And undeniably the best dress--rather like Beyonce', huh? It rocked, sho 'nuff.
Once at the school for Grand March (or "Senior Lead Out," as we called in back in the day) we were treated to all kinds of frothy confections in the form of gowns and dresses. Red was the overwhelming color du' jour, short dresses made a mini-comeback (what a play on words!), and animal prints proved huge this year. One young lady even wore a camoflauge evening gown, trimmed in neon orange, while her date had the matching tuxedo. OK, I just really revealed a lot about where I live. Do I even dare mention that Amie--Kristi's sister--and Shane, a good friend, both correctly identified the camo pattern as "Mossy Creek?" Well, there it is.
Much to our chagrin we also witnessed a few girls sporting the braless look (and zero attempt at Band-Aid coverage), gowns laced up the side to reveal a complete lack of undergarments of any kind, and necklines plunging so far south I was fully expecting Hugh Heffner to appear and give his stamp of approval, in his own, special, geriatric pervy manner. Oh, and an offer to appear between the pages of his publication. Or, at the very least, a film crew from Girls Gone Wild. Their job would've been easy that evening...easy being the operative word. Yes, I went there. "SHOW US YOUR...wait, you already showed it. Great, thanks for playing!"
Kristi's friend, (and mine!) Rachel Wynn, wins the award for best-dressed date. (Ha--"Wynn wins"--I'm just reeling 'em out here folks!) With her permission, I now submit a picture of Rachel and her prom date, Nick Stapleton. Rachel was rockin' the leopard-look (and really good hair!) while Nick was...well...sporting a tuxedo from the Dumb & Dumber collection. I am not making this up:
The best part about all this? Nick had a cohort who wore the light blue Dumb & Dumber tux, and they drove up on a moped, just like Lloyd and Harry in the movie. Absolutely hilarious. I admit it--kids these days are so clever and savvy. Fifteen years ago we were too concerned with fitting in, being cool, wearing just the right thing. Prom is serious business, correct? These teenagers, however, were more concerned with having a good time...and that's what the prom should really be about, anyway. Kristi, Rachel and a group of about 20 others went to Kingsport following the big dance, to eat and play Lazer Tag. How fun & original is that, I ask? Way better than listening to pleas for tobacco, I tell ya. But Brantley--wherever you may be--fifteen years later, I still find it funny.