Thursday, October 6, 2011

Slow Dancing

Prompt: This is a prompt from MamaKat's workshop. It sure brought back some memories!

I had finally talked my parents into letting me go to a junior high school dance. While they were smart enough not to trust me when left to my own devices, they thought very highly of my friend Cathy. I was very excited, even though my idea of a school dance came straight from the television show Happy Days.

Back then, nobody actually danced at a school dance, except for the slow dances. These events were all about looking good for the boys, and dancing made one sweaty. Sweaty girls didn't get boys, I was told. Cathy and I found a space along the wall of the cafeteria and did our part to prevent that wall from collapsing. Some of the other girls we knew showed up and helped. The boys were on the other side of the room, safely out of earshot. We girls took advantage of this; we began to discuss the boys. Several of the girls, including Cathy, were talking about a guy named Bryan.

Once I saw him, I understood the general swoonyness. Bryan was tall for an eighth grader, with dark hair and vivid blue eyes. He was, in the lexicon of the day, "cute". I wasn't the least bit interested in him, however, because my friend Cathy liked him. No poaching on another girl's crush! Even someone with my poor social skills knew that.

It was my duty, therefore, to help my friend 'hook up' with her crush. Cathy was a very soft spoken, shy girl. I suggested that Cathy should ask Bryan to slow dance. He doesn't even know that I exist, Cathy responded. I raised the point that he never would know that she existed unless she got him to notice; what better way than to ask him to dance? No, she said. Come on, I cajoled, it can't be that hard. Just go up and ask him!

Cathy was irritated with me; I was being pushy, albeit for what I felt was a good cause. The other girls around us were starting to listen to our exchange. She had to save face. So Cathy said what she thought would be the end of the matter.

"If it's that easy, then YOU go do it!" I heard a collective gasp as the proverbial gauntlet hit the ground. My face was on fire from all this extra attention, but since what Cathy had said was the teenage equivalent of the Triple Dog Dare, I had to do it.

Yep...ask a cute guy, whom I've never met, to slow dance. I contemplated fainting for a moment...Nope. Dang.

A slow dance began playing, Easy, by the Commodores. I took a deep breath, straightened my shoulders, and marched to where the boys stood. They were all staring at me with horrified expressions, and that was a bit disconcerting, but I was on a mission. I marched right up to this Bryan, looked him right in the eye...and asked him to dance. I was so proud that I had asked him, so busy celebrating that milestone that I didn't realize that Bryan had said yes.


Panic. What do I do? He said yes! He wasn't supposed to say yes! I completely panicked when Bryan grabbed my hand and pulled me out on the dance floor. He had to show me where to put my hands--my model for learning to dance was the Fonz. But after that we settled into the rhythm of the song, swaying side to side and turning in circles. I put my head on his shoulder, closed my eyes, and pretended to be Cathy. When the song was over, I thanked him and went back to Cathy. She was even more irritated, and made some smart comment. I didn't care; I was proud of myself. I had actually asked a boy to dance...and he said YES.


  1. "Cathy and I found a space along the wall of the cafeteria and did our part to prevent that wall from collapsing. Some of the other girls we knew showed up and helped."

    That's hilarious!! It's a good thing you were there or I'm sure that wall would've been a goner.

    I so would have been Cathy, btw. I never asked a boy to dance. Ever. I'm getting nervous just thinking about it.

  2. Did you like him after that? Because I was a sucker for a boy who would dance with me! Not the first time, but pretty much all the times after that. What?! I liked being liked:)

  3. So what happened after that? You pulled me in and now I must know!

  4. Yay!!! I love it!

    Now, did Cathy ever get over being upset and did either of you ever talk to Bryan again?

  5. Cathy and I are still friends. After all these years, she still puts up with my shenanigans!

    Cathy and Bryan did date eventually, after college!

  6. Yay!! I NEVER had the courage to ask a boy to dance. I love that he said yes. :) Are you married now? haha!


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