Tuesday, September 12, 2006

Visions of Feathers and Jheri Curls Dancing in My Head

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One More Knight. Aptly titled, this was equally the name of our school mascot (Knights), as well as our Phil Collins inspired song, that allowed us into our first foray into the Black Tie world of a Formal - Prom Night.

My prom was equally fun, and bizarre. For starters, I had three guys ask me. The first one, I wasn't sure if he was planning on getting his Jheri curl redone for the festivities, nor did I have the heart to ask him. The second one, he wasn't tall enough (I was 5'10" at the time), and would have towered over him with my pumps. The third one, well, let's just say I wasn't sure if I would even make it to the prom. He was what we called, at least, on the West Coast, a slanging brother, someone who was too slick for his own good and me being virgin-AL personality, I declined him with a quickness.

I decided to ride solo. I have always been a relative loner; what difference did it make when it came to my prom. So, my friend Gretchen (who was going with a good friend) decided to roll together. I had also chosen an unconventional color - black.

Black, you say? Why, P, what's the problem with black?

Glad you asked. In the decade that I graduated in, what was hot on the streets was pink and peach pastels. With obsence looking fishtails, outrageous puffy sleeves, and equally disturbing hairstyles. Accompanied by airbrushed nails and satin shoes to boot, we were indeed, a sight for sore eyes. My mother kept asking me was I sure this was what I wanted; to which I said. . .YES.

Making a long story short, I showed up at the prom solo (after arriving of course, with Gretchen and her dude), and I (along with the dress) was a HIT. Let me tell you this; everyone looked FANTASTIC - I just think that people were more surprised at the COLOR more than anything. But the dress WAS nice; One sleeve, satin, slit in the back, rhinestones (sounds cheezy but wasn't at the time) Seven (count 'em) SEVEN guys came up to me telling me they wanted to ask me out, but they thought I had a college boyfriend; they indicated they would be happy to pose with me, to which I promptly declined. I took my picture before my Fashion Fair/Flori Roberts inspired makeup wore off, and my feather started to droop.

The night went smoothly; Update on the brothers who asked me:

1. Jheri curl did, indeed, get his hair done for the festivities, and looked great with his little Emerald green vest on. So did his date.

2. Napoleon Complex looked equally dazzling with his Tux. And his date had on Electric Blue with some Satin Pumps.

But the piece de resistance came from the #3 Dates - the slanger, the baller. THIS MUTHA FUCKA asked another girl at our school to go to the prom - AND BROUGHT ANOTHER GIRL FROM ANOTHER SCHOOL AND LEFT THE OTHER ONE STRANDED AT HOME. . .

Everyone was pissed - Both female AND Male (after the guys stopped drooling over the light skin long hair foolishness). His other date eventually showed up and was let in, and it was on and cracking then. Let's just say that him AND his date had to be escorted out of the prom, eventually. Me, being me, I was loving every minute of it (except for the fact that he left her stranded - that wasn't cool). I was also equally horrified over the fact that he very well could have done that TO ME!! In a later conversation, he swore he wouldn't have, but in the words of my R & B brother Ginuine, what makes ME different?

As the night started to wind down, I began looking for Gretchen and her little friend.

No dice.

Means nothing. Who really sits down at the prom? You're so busy dancing and doing everything else, one of which figuring out what's crackin tomorrow, that it was no big deal.

Gretchen. . .Gretchen. . .(by the way, YES, that was her name) 

Well, I might as well had been looking for the holy grail because Gretchen and her friend bailed out and left me stranded at Lynwood (up to no good) High School's Junior/Senior Prom at the Los Angeles Marriott.

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So, anyway, after I STOPPED feeling like that, I managed to make my way to the phone booth (pre-cell phone dayz, y'all), and called my mother, who had to come pick me up, in her sponge rollers, in her 1980's Narc Inspired Chevy Cavalier, and take me home.

Gretchen was equally clowned at school after the word was spread (wonder who did that). She claimed that she believed that she couldn't find me, one, and two, she thought I would get home with someone else. Well, one, it's not hard to find a woman, six one in heels, with a black dress on with a feathered hair style, and two, EXACTLY WHO WAS I SUPPOSED TO RIDE HOME WITH??

Yet, the prom was indeed a pleasant experience, and a good time had by all.

**AFTERWORD**

I didn't speak to Gretchen for the next ten years. It wasn't like a grudge, but after that incident we stopped speaking in high school, and then we graduated, and just lost contact. I saw her at a mixer later on, and we talked but not much else came from our relationship.

Remember dude who left the chick stranded at home while he took light skin-ded girl to the prom, and his other date came up there hoo-banging? Here are their own updates:

Light Skin and her REAL dude came into the clothing store that I worked in a few weeks, later. Me, being, me, kept staring at her trying to figure out where I saw her. I finally blurted out (in front of her man) that, by the way, did-ent she go to Lynwood (up to no good) prom? She looked at me, her eyes pleading for me to shut the phuck up.

Why she do that? It was on, now. Her man was looking at her like WTF? So, once again, me being the 17 year old I was, proceeded to describe her dress and all, to which her boyfriend, at that point, was furious. He led (read: pulled) her out of the store.

As for the guy who left the chick stranded AND Miss Stranded herself: They have been married for over ten years, with three kids.

So now, I turn it over to you, the readers: What WAS your prom experience like? Did you GO? Why or Why Not? Any interesting events occur before (or after?)

20 comments:

Miss Ahmad said...

ohh being an late night writer has it's perks cuz i'm first!!

i went to a ton of proms in high school. the first one i attended i was only 13 i think and he was a senior and played varsity basketball. he used to let me wear his varsity jacket to school and i was a vision of loveliness in a peach lace number which was everything but sexy!

by my senior year of course i only dated men who were older than me and my date wore a gray suit with gucci loafers and i a green velvet cocktail dress. i was taller than him. we double dated with Kai and my friend Kieta. It was awesome..at least what i recall. I can't find not one of my prom pictures from all of those years though, which is sad!

Unruly Brown said...
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Unruly Brown said...

That was a great story.

And wow Miss Ahmad was quite the belle. I see you haven't changed much with the guy bringing you shoes to the Geisha Bar from the WCBH chronicles. ;)

I didn't go to any proms at all. I was too much this super-skinny boy-avoiding tomboy to be invited in my soph or junior year, and in my senior year I found myself at a new school in a new city after having been expelled for fighting with just over 2 months left to graduate. So I had other things on my mind besides the prom. If I had to do it again though I still don't know if I would go.

Miss Ahmad said...

@ unruly~the guy who brought me shoes to the Geisha house was actually the guy who we double dated with for my senior prom. I've known him since middle school! crazy huh!

i wasn't much of a bell, i just had boobs and took cute pictures:-)

Miz JJ said...

I can't believe that Ms. Stranded ended up marrying that dude. Life is crazy.

My prom was pretty uneventful. I wore a white dress. When I look back at those pictures they look like our wedding photos.

Koolbreeze said...

lost my virginity... does that count as interesting!

i went to prom with my best friend it was pretty boring. i had a long black dress with some banging shoes that laced up my ankles... cost more than my dress. then i hooked up with my boyfriend afterwards.

Lāā said...

I had planned on going solo, but this one boy who was voted 'Class Nerd' kinda wanted to go with me. I told him that I would see him there. When I arrive, he comes presenting me with a corsage with several teachers looking. I was mortified because no one wants to date the class nerd. Now that I'm older, I don't see what the big deal was.

Anyway my dress was a black number with sequins and a sort of fishtail mesh from the JCPenney catalog. It had spaghetti straps on it and I cut them off. Oh, one of my friends (not close) ended up wearing the exact same dress. The differences were I was 5'8" and 105 lbs and she was maybe 5' and about 140 lbs and she didn't cut her straps off. So we looked totally different in the dress but still didn't want to chance anyone recognizing it. She stayed on one side of the room and I on the other.

Sangindiva said...

I went to prom with my best friend (at the time)
we had known each other since 5th grade.
Everyone including our parents thought we would get married- but THIS diva had bigger dreams...
and HE didn't agree with them.
Now I am living my dreams and he's just married.
I wore a royal purple dress and still have those pics...
somewhere. The next time you see those will be on a behind the music VH-1 special about my life- they are pretty butal!!!

YouToldHarpoTaBeatMe said...

My prom was the hawtness! Except for one thing.... my date couldn't dance worth a DAYUM!! I never wanted to leave a dance floor so bad in my entire life!

Before we left the house, his ENTIRE family came right behind him. I'm talking Momma, Daddy, Brother, Sister, the dog, a couple of Aunties, and Gramma and Granddaddy. You would've thought they were tourists, complete with camcorder and cameras.

I found out years later that because of the neighborhood they lived in and school he went to, I was the only chocolate covered girl he had ever dated, soooo I'm guessing they wanted to make it memorable for him as well as themselves.

I wasn't really prissy back then, so to see me looking all polished and stuff, really threw some folks off.

Anywho, we had a good time.

bunny said...

Oh wow, Senior year 1984 yeah I had on the pale pink princess dress with the poofy, pink organza sleeves, damn P!

I asked the dude down the street and we had a really good time. He took his daddy's big ass Caddy and you couldn't tell me NATHAN that night! I thought I was a for real princess. We had a such a good time dancing and goofing off with friends laughing at all the white girls wearing those big azz hoop skirts (crazy) One girl had to take her dress off completely to go to the bathroom.

The food was atrocious at prom and we waited so late to leave so where did we end up? The golden arches, Mickey D's baby. Yeah we looked crazy in our formal attire stepping up in McD's for some cheeseburgers and fries.

Well after the after party we went over to the beach for a little bit of fun in the caddy you know ;-) and he took me home about 7:00 that morning.

Ok fast forward 22 years later and my mom is now semi-dating his dad.

The Phoenix aka ThatGirlTam said...

The prom...

May 1989...my mother decides to dress me in a fashions unlike my taffeta wearing counterparts. I wore a red silk, beaded Chinese gown that had a white dragon down the front and splits on either side up to my thighs. Accented with those infamous white satin pumps and pearl earrings. Classic...

My two girlfriends and I thought it was cool because all of our dates went to the same school (Dorsey High) and we all went to Gardena. Except how come I ended up with the DWEEB?? His name was Rick and this fool showed up at my house with a big ass "T" carved into his head. He wore a white tux with tails, some ridiculous white ATHLETIC SOCKS and these dusty lookin white slip on shoes. HOW COME HE DIDN'T JUST GET THE TUXEDO SHOES???

The only thing I remember about that night is everyone complimenting my dress and me leaving Rick at the table while I shmoozed with my friends and had a good time. When prom was over, we promptly got back in the limo and I went straight home...my mother wasn't lettin me do the AFTER PROM thing.

The other part of this story is that I had a boyfriend at the time. He went to college in New Mexico and told me he wouldn't make it back to take me to the prom. Well his best friend was asked to our prom and this negro asked MY BOYFRIEND to go in his place. ASSHOLE! The girl was someone who was a HUGE HATER. She would look stupid by talkin shit about how we weren't really together all while he was pulling up to pick me up from school. I glared at them all night long, but behaved myself because he asked me to.

Since I couldn't do the after prom thing, I just KNEW we'd be going to Magic Mountain the next day (which was like a ritual for the day after prom). Well my boyfriend didn't wanna go because he was afraid someone would steal or break into his car (a Jetta on rims - that was a big deal in 89!).

My prom weekend SUCKED!! Go 'head P and say it...you've never heard the same story twice....lol...told you I've got TONS of them!!

P said...

@ The Phoenix:

What you know about going to Magic Mountain the next day?

Cocoa Girl said...

Girl! I haven't even yet read the post but had to comment b/c I saw Carrie.

Chile...that was my FAVORITE CHILDHOOD STORY!

Yes, I do understand that it was a horror flick. Yet, I love how she did them bitches in at the end.

Okay..I'mma read now...

Cocoa Girl said...

Dammit...I am mad that I missed this one!!!

My proms were off the hook (and not necessarily in a good way):

Adina Howard "Freak in Me," R-Kels "Body's Calling" and SNP's "Push It" topped the play lists.

My dresses were on point both years. BUT, the second year I (read: Mom's) bought me a $275 dress that was registered, so nobody at my school could by the same one.

I felt so guilty about the 1995 price tag that I insisted on buying inexpensive shoes. I bought some sparkly joints for $14.95 that broke on my way into the car.

My BFF and I spent the first part of dinner at Morton's in the bathroom sawing off the other heal - to create slides - with a steak knife! I slithered around the floor all damn night.

Also, I brought a really nice, dude with bad acne to this prom and proceeded to diss him. I even abandoned him before my friends and I met up at the hotel. Damn, it still feels terrible!!! I had put that memory out of my head!

Also, (same prom) there was this one poor Asian girl who got beat down by her black date and his lady friend at the senior prom.

Apparently, her and her ghetto peeps decided to skip the tab at the restaurant, yet she wasn't in on the plan. They bounced while she was in the bathroom and she came out to the manager and the entire bill. To make matter worst, they rolled to the prom without her and proceeded to tell everyone how they left her ass.

She came in crying and her date hit her in the face in the parking lot. The Monday following prom, the ghettois lady friend tried to beat her down in the hallway.

Live on ghetto ass North High!

Wonderful post!

1InTheSame said...

I am from the south so proms were something to be desired back then, I went to a total of 9 proms, only one of which was at a mostly black school...that is the one I remember the most...my date was stunning, I had just got my license and it was on... Back in the day when I was young, Damn I'd love to go back.

J said...

I loved your prom story, especially the carrie association. I was sort of on a rebellious trip, I don't need to go to this because it was just stupid. I think in reality I was just afraid of being rejected and nobody asked :( so...... several other rejects and I had a party that night.... watched movies till 5 a.m. and pigged out till there was no tomorrow...I know, I know...pathetic....I should have gone.....

Rose said...

Yeah I went and I had a pretty good time. Didn't go with my boyfriend but with a friend. He bored the heck out of me. He was driving a new car and it had a sunroof and he was so excited he was talking out of it...talking about tacky...

Jaimie said...

hee, hee, hee. you tell a good story.

well, you already know my prom fiasco.

nuf said.

J. G. said...

Great story P!!

Here we go with mine damn I went with my boyfriend at the time (rolling eyes) I didn't care to much for this guy but we were living together don't ask! Anyways I wore a light purple Victorian dress you know the ones that push your bb's all the way up your chin. And before prom I had lost a lot of weight so I was looking great, my hair was all done up and make up was looking fly but tell me that aunt flow stopped by I was pissed as hell cause I was all blotted anyway still lookin good.

Well it was funny because all the biotches in my class thought that I was b/s-ing about my man he was what you called a pretty boy (that couldn't dance for shit!) kind of guy. We had it at the Miramar Sheraton in Santa Monica I remember the entrance and my ex was there with some chick that I couldn't stand.

Once the dinner part was done tell me that I didn't ditch my man cause his whack ass couldn't dance and I danced with some other guys O'yeah I did.

Don't trip I made sure he had fun he danced with some of my girlfriends (the ones that went solo) and he had a good time. LOL damn I was Imean I am a biotch!!!

Since I lived on my own well you know I was out all night, we made our way to the pier then home.

So that was my prom...

The Sarccastik Variable Why said...

what'up P...yeah your boy has been underground for a minute...i had two dates...didn't hit neither one of them...still pissed off about that..lol..