Throwback Thursday: Me in High School

I realized just now that I’ve never mentioned much about my time in high school on this blog. Since you’re probably having a tough time functioning in normal society without having even a cursory knowledge of my lower educational experience, I will regale you with some stories of my completely typical youth as a musical theatre nerd. I’d tell you about junior high when I was a chubby brunette who believed in fairies and briefly dabbled in Wicca, but that was a dark time we can revisit on another Throwback Thursday.

For now, we can start with the setting for most of my prominent high school memories, my community musical theatre group.

196747_1002761749449_2855_n{My brother and me posing in production photos for the show, A Year with Frog and Toad}

I wish I could say that I spent my weekends drinking in the woods with my field hockey team, but in reality, I didn’t spend any time with people I went to class with. Instead, for most of high school I was in one show or another and I’d spend Saturday nights watching movies like Basket Case in the basement of the girl who played The Baker’s Wife in Into the Woods. 

208318_1003443449473_9729_n {That’s me, wearing just a host of things that don’t match, with a basket on my head, reenacting a scene from the seminal classic horror film, Basket Case}

But, listen, we theatre kids had some boozy, all-American Pie style fun, too. I have some fond memories of planning cocktail parties with my best gal pal, Ian:

200772_1002779792906_1594_nThat’s a little greeting card I made with some vintage MS Paint software. And who is Muffy and Biff? Why, that’s the married, upper class, Connecticut WASP personas we created for ourselves that would throw these parties. Because who else would put out a spread of hors d’oeuvres and request that party guests wear festive cocktail attire? Certainly not high school students.

With all of this information, you might think I was too much of a loser to actually date in high school… and then you’d be WRONG. I had one boyfriend, and he played the Beast in Beauty and the BEAST, thankyouverymuch!!!

206777_1002780872933_3405_nHere’s a disposable camera picture of me when I was a sophomore during my boyfriend’s senior prom (ummm, yeah, my boyfriend was 18 AND played the title character in a New Hampshire children’s community theatre production… I can’t believe I wasn’t homecoming queen, either). I remember a few weeks before prom I had just bought my dress, and I was pretty angry with my boyfriend of maybe 5 or 6 months. He told me that saying “I love you” made him “physically ill” and asked if we could please go back to just casually dating? And I was all, “yeah, sure, that probably won’t contribute to any kind of crippling trust issues in my adult life!” But, I questioned whether I was really okay with this new arrangement. My dad told me that I could dump him if I wanted to, regardless of the $400 dress, but I stuck it out for a few more months. Then, a couple days after we went to the Oasis concert I bought us tickets to for his birthday, he dumped me over the phone.

With my best friend and her boyfriend (his best friend), we drove to the summer camp he worked at and I dropped off a bag full of his stuff including some Buddha beads he gave me for Valentine’s Day and his Beauty and the Beast cast tee-shirt. Then we stopped for lunch, and I held back tears in a Boston Market like the little soldier that I am.

After that, I vowed to never date another actor, until I dated another actor in college and, like, really vowed to never date another actor.

Flash forward to my own senior prom:  promThat’s me with my gay date. The proof that he is gay and not my boyfriend is that he has the same hair color as me and I would sooner put out a cigarette in my eye than date a fellow ginger.

I didn’t really want to go to my senior prom, but I knew my mom wanted me to, so I sucked it up. You can really tell that I didn’t care about going since I used the same dress I wore to my sophomore prom and because in that picture my skin color is at its resting tone. If I care about what I’m doing, you better believe I’m bathing in tubs of Jergens natural glow moisturizer until that main event.

Okay, what else, what else…. I own(ed) the Buffy the Vampire Slayer musical episode soundtrack, memorabilia script, and sheet music. I had some blunt bangs for a while. I’d go to Rocky Horror midnight showings, which is the symptom of the worst kind of theatre nerd. So, ya, that was high school for me. A lot of gay people and pancake stage make- up. I wish I had more pictures to show you, but it’s hard to locate them because Facebook wasn’t really a thing then. Which, by the way, thank GOD because I got into enough trouble with my DeadJournal. And then my subsequent LiveJournal. And then Myspace.

Throwback Thursday: Cartwheels

photo 1This photo is not just exhibit A that my head has always been roughly the size of a regulation 10 pin bowling ball (I had to specify because as a New Englander, candle pin is our bowling method of choice, and my head hasn’t been that size ball since the beginning of my mother’s second trimester). This 3rd grade dance recital picture is also a painful reminder of the childhood trauma that resulted from not having the ability to do a cartwheel. Did you think that I was about to tell you my dance teacher molested me?

No, no, just some upper-middle class problems where my parents could afford to send me to weekly dance classes that were segregated by which girls could or could not do cartwheels. So, I wasn’t abused, but it felt kinda like, a race thing, almost.

No? Well, not being able to do a cartwheel was embarrassing. And look how big my head was! I couldn’t catch a break after I was born into a stable family in a first world nation! For one, while the other girls were doing a step-ball-change, sashay, sashay, cartwheel, pose! I was doing a sashay, sashay, summersault, slowly get up, pose a half-count late!

Or the time my older cousin tried to teach me how to do a cartwheel at my brother’s baseball game and all I accomplished was throwing up a Dole popsicle and spaghetti.

The worst cartwheel experience of all was when I was in middle school and wanted to be a cheerleader. During the first practice leading up to try-outs we were separated into groups: girls who did back hand springs, girls who did cartwheels, and girls they would humor for two hours. There ended my cheerleading career.

I don’t know what it is about cartwheels that always eluded me. I think it was a combination of my lack of upper body strength and my fear of my feet being where my head should be. It’s just amazing what a huge stress cartwheels used to be for me. It’s like algebra (to theatre majors), except with cartwheels no one ever lets you know that you  practically never need them in adulthood. I guess people just assume you know that.

Assuming makes an ass out of you and me because I was horrified that this was going to be my life forever.

Look! This is me as a Rorschach test!

photo 2