Thursday, January 10, 2008

If I Could Sit Down With My 13 Year Old Self...

1) She would ask me how I did my hair (didn't know I had curly hair till about 16)
2) Be thrilled I quit smoking (less than a pack a week would still have drawn her ire)
3) Ask me about boys
4) Be disappointed I didn't have answers to the majority of those questions
5) Be shocked at the answers I have stumbled upon (even the censored version I would probably give her)
6) Be proud that I/we did what I/we said I/we would. You know...write about pretty things, care about bigger ones, live in a big city, have interesting friends and a pet.

I think she would also feel pretty good about my plans for Saturday night and frankly, I, as a twentysomething, am probably a little more excited than is terribly appropriate.

I am chaperoning a middle school dance.

Caro called and asked me if I could help her out for a huge dance that four of the local middle schools she works with are hosting. Four junior highs worth of hormonal, suburban, overindulged angst in one room. Umm, absolutely I will.

Are you a little confused by my response to this? Let me break it down. I went to every single dance in middle school, despite being in the throes of headgear, preteen pudge, interesting wardrobe decisions and social estrangement (everyone says this about themselves but Brother Slimbo will enthusiastically back me up if he is so inclined).

As a possible result of the above list, I redeemed a serious crush at one such dance and was crying in the bathroom for most of the next. Do you remember that excruciating feeling of scanning the crowd when a slow song came on? Holy God. Most of you boys were playing basketball in the cafeteria while all of us girls desperately wanted someone to ask us to sway awkwardly to "I Swear" by All 4 One. The 20% of XY who were inclined to be asking were chasing the ED's around the darker corners of the gym (ED=Early Developers/NOT ME). As I've gotten older, I've come to realize that the basketball guys were by far the better ones, but at the time it was just Hell.

I've digressed- my point is that these events were unmissable misery and I, as a quasi-adjusted adult who survived adolescence feel like I might be qualified to troll the bathrooms for my own former kind, offering comfort/mediation. Whichever seems more appropriate. If I need a refresher, I may check THIS AMAZING EXHIBIT out at the Art Institute on Saturday, pre-suburbs.

But that's only half of it. The other half is that I'm hardly alone on the chaperone list. Caro and Abby have signed on as well (they attended said middle school) so I will be breaking it down and breaking up fights with two of my best girls.

Then, as I was relaying my excitement about all of this to Jaimeson, he reminded me that he ALSO attended this group of schools. And he is in town for a spell and looking for some sober fun (the liver is a tender thing, he's to be commended for giving it a break). So now I have three of my favorite people, three generations of north suburban alumni and I am pulling together the most kickass throwback mix ever. Jonk even threw in some suggestions ( to make it musically "legit") and this is what I have so far:

1) All of the original Jock Jams
2) Creep by TLC
3) Whatta Man or Shoop by Salt-n-Pepa
4) Cotton Eye Joe by Rednex
5) Anything by C+C Music Factory
6) Anything by Boyz II Men
7) The Electric Slide
8) Jump by Kris Kross
9) This Is How We Do It by Montell Jordan
10) Come On and Ride It (The Train) by Quad City DJs

Your turn now...what am I missing?

While you're thinking, J's coming down for dinner (I'll include the recipes tomorrow!). The video below was his last "experience" with being an adult at a school dance and I feel I need to go through this delicious piece of literature with him. Unfortunately, this time, he can't just throw down his guitar and kick some yuppie, pre-teen ass.


Susie said...

Obviously YMCA. Whitney Houston, Mariah Carey, and Coolio ("Gangsta's Paradise"). AND "All Cried Out" by Allure.

omg I need to stop. Ahh middle school dance memories. I danced with the boy of my dreams to Celine Dion's "It's All Coming Back to Me Now."

You are going to have a blast!

So@24 said...

Damn. That list is amazing

I actually had a "middle school" party in college. Everyone had to wear shit from middle school. I wore an Adidas jacket, socks with sandles, and Jansport backpack that sagged below my knees.

What about "No Diggity, No Doubt"?

recovering overachiever said...

I loved middle school dances, even though they were totally miserable!

For the life of me I can't remember the name of the song, but it is burned in my brain as a *dance song*.

It goes:
"I put my hand up on your hip, when I dip, you dip, we dip."
Sound familiar?

camille said...

i want to see that exhibit too! let me know if you want to go!!

Jonk said...

recovering overachiever,
That would be "Da' Dip" by Freak Nasty. Good call.
"Da' Dip" on YouTube

Allison said...

If you want a classic slow song - I still believe Peter Gabriel 'In Your Eyes' will be a big hit.

Shanti said...

so@24 totally got to it before i did, because the minute i saw that list i started singing no diggity.

besides that i'm going with My Boo by INOJ-the one that goes
"At night, I think of you
I want to be your lady, baby
If your game is on, give me a call, boo
If your love is strong gonna give my all to you"

or anything by ace of base!

btw-i'm starting to wonder how the heck this is my first time at your blog. i LOVE chicago bloggers, not just because midwestern people are my favorite, but mostly because I can pretend I still live there if I live vicariously through your blogs.

ToKissTheCook said...

You guys serious rock.
Sus: HOW could I forget YMCA? And I think I still know all the words to Gangsta's Paradise.

So: This is why we get along so well. I also love a theme party. No diggity, no doubt.

RO: Welcome! And Da Dip is on the CD. Cue the grinding little ones.

Cam: I'm calling you tomorrow, maybe art in the afternoon?

Jonk: I agree, that was a shining star suggestion.

Joner: Is it bad that I still melt to "In Your Eyes"?

Shanti: I'm wondering how we just found each other as well! What brings you to the West Coast?