this one in the fall of 2009, then this one last autumn, so, yeah, this one's definitely number three.
The ritual hasn't varied, other than the fact that each successive episode includes a few additional gussied up teenagers squeezing into our brick bungalow for a high school dance pre-function.
Last night, twenty-five sixteen- and seventeen-year-old children congregated for some Safeway Select frozen pizza, Caesar salad and root beer, electrifying our living room with more giddy energy than a twelve-ounce can of Welch's frozen Robin Williams Concentrate.
They were a fantastic group of kids, at least as far as I could tell, since I couldn't understand them. They spoke a dialect of inside joke humor and abbreviations; curling irons were referred to as "c.i.'s" and the term "for sure" was pronounced "fowsh." Frozen pizza? "Frope."
I realize now that my house is divided between those who speak English and one who claims "Eng" as her primary language.
At nine o'clock, our house instantaneously purged itself of the four inch heels, the short, shiny dresses and the basketball shoes worn with slacks. The time had arrived to hit the 2011 Chief Sealth International High School Homecoming Dance.
The kids retreated to their cars, and the newly silent house rang my ears with a piercing din, reminding me of searching for the Ford Grenada in the quiet night air after watching the Scorpions.
For the next few hours, to the best of my knowledge, the evening proceeded successfully. No police activity, anyway.
I asked my daughter this morning for permission to interview her about the dance while it was still fresh in her mind. She consented, provided I performed the interview while she showered. The following conversation took place as I sat on the toilet seat, talking to a shower curtain.
My words will be in italics; hers in normal case.
So, you've been to a few of these now. Are they still as fun?
Yeah, I guess. They always go the same way. No one dances and then, suddenly it's a huge mosh pit.
Do you ask each other to dance?
No. You just start dancing and usually, you just end up next to someone.
So two people don't walk out together?
No. Dad, no. What the heck? Why would they do that?
What if you end up dancing next to someone you don't want to be with?
If they're a jerk or a bad dancer, you just walk away and circle back. It's really easy.
Who was the best looking guy there?
No one stood out. Most of the guys wear ties whenever they have football or basketball games, so I'm used to seeing them look nice.
What about the other guys? The non-athletes? What about the bad boys?
No. They're not hot at all. Eww. They're gross. They do nothing with their time except pierce themselves and get tattoos.
Lots of tattoos at your school?
Oh, my god, Dad. Of course. Did lots of kids have tattoos when you were in high school?
That's weird. At least one person in each of my classes has a tattoo. Is that right? Let's see. First period? Yes. Second period? Yes. Third period? Yes. Fourth period? Yes. Fifth period? Yes. Sixth period? Yes.
Was anyone at the dance highly obnoxious?
Well, one guy tried to do a back flip but couldn't, and he hit his head on the floor. I'm sure he got a concussion. And then, the DJ didn't get paid at the end of the night because he had signed an agreement to bleep out any swear words in the music and I must have heard the "F" word six or seven times. So he didn't get paid.
Anything else you want to add?
Well, it was really fun, but strange to dance in the lunchroom. The theme was "A Night in Gotham City," but it was really a night in the lunchroom with a sign that said "Gotham City."
I love this face wash. It makes my face feel really nice.
Would you be interested in having your mom and I chaperon the next one?
Okay, how about just me? I can be cool.
Dad, who wants a fifty year old man standing in a dark corner by himself watching everyone? That's even creepier than both of you being there.