Friday, October 3, 2008

Homecoming- Then and Now

When I was in elementary school we lived a beautiful college town in the Ozark mountains and home to the University of Arkansas. It was probably the most idyllic time of my life. One memory is the occasional football games that my parents would attend. Whether it was just this one time or a few, I remember hanging out with the Warren girls while our parents attended the football games. Their dad was a professor at the U of A so they lived just off campus. On this particular memory, they were making some money by charging people to park in their yard. It must have been Homecoming because I remember being enamored by the pretty co-eds in their Pendleton wool plaid blazers or skirts (in Razorback red of course), wth their teased & sprayed bobs or flips (that's a hair style for all you young whipper-snappers), and their cute dates wearing sport coats and ties. I couldn't wait until I was old enough to dress up and go to football games.

Fast forward 10 years...
Homecoming: Circa 1972-1976
It was the 70's and even though life in the coastal suburbs of Houston Texas were decidedly more casual (can you say hippies & surfers?), my high school had a pretty strict dress code. A girl's skirt had to be no shorter than 3" above the knee, a boy's hair could not touch their collars. It wasn't even until my senior year that we could wear pants to school (then only a "pantsuit"). We spent four years avoiding the vice principal and fine tuning ways to break the rules (The movie Footloose was my life). Homecoming was still centered around the game. Homecoming outfits were casual and standard date etiquette required a mum (double if the date was generous) complete with streamers and a pipe cleaner goalpost. Pictures were taken with a Kodak Instamatic camera and the festivities included: Go to ballgame, go to the dance (except as a good baptist girl I was not allowed to do the latter). Home by curfew.

Fast forward 30-something years...

Homecoming: 2008
Homecoming is what prom used to be...Matching corsage & boutineer, special occasion dress, matching shoes, date's shirt and or tie to match the dress; clutch/evening bag to hold cell phone, digital camera, cash or ATM card, student ID and lip gloss. Trip to tanning salon for that special "glow", hair appointment for up-do, nail appointment for french mani & pedi. School pictures, Group Pictures, Dinner at restaurant (reservations made weeks in advance), All of this before the Big Dance- daughter gets to go (mom set free from baptist bonds), change of clothes for the post dance bonfire then a sleepover with friends ending with breakfast the next morning.

What will they think of next?

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