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Dancing and Basketball

The tradition of the Farewell Seniors Luau was a high school dance thrown by the sophomore class of that year as a farewell gift to the seniors. The junior class’ farewell gift was throwing the junior/senior prom. All the seniors who attended the Luau dance got in free.

 

What people wore to the dance was very important especially for the girls. The local mall was stocked to the brim with Hawaiian shirts and sarong skirts in island prints. The mini mall also had island themed clothes too.

Most of the girls wore sarongs. But they didn't tie them very well and had to diaper pin them closed. I refused to wear a sarong. I don’t like wearing skirts in general. The girls would usually wear a tube top, a bikini top or halter top to accompany their sarong skirt, and then spend the whole dance complaining about how cold they were. Nobody ever wore a muumuu. Sometimes the boys would get into it and wear skirts. Or even coconut or seashell bras. 

If you couldn't find anything island print the next best thing was flower print. Usually with flower print it was anything goes, but daisies were the most prevalent. 

Sometimes the girls would wear Asian themed clothes like chignon dresses and dragon shirts.

 

I attended my first Farewell Seniors Luau in 1999. Since it was the first one I ever went to I didn't realize what emphasis was put on the dance. Since I was new to high school, and an only child I didn't know about all the traditions. I didn't have a cool older relative to tell me all about my high school’s traditions and events.

I didn't need to buy anything for that dance since I already had a blue girly cut Hawaiian shirt. Hawaiian shirts were really popular in 1998/1999.

 

(The name of the school has been removed from the ticket)

My English teacher told the class that this year the dance was going to have a live performance by Samoan dancers. They were the relatives of one of the seniors who went to school there.

 

It was my first high school night dance. I had gone to a lunch dance on Valentine’s Day. It was kinda boring, held during lunch and only cost 50 cents. The main reason I was there perusing my taken crush. I fantasized about getting to dance with him.

 

My school was notorious for gouging people they were selling Little Caesar’s Pizza for $5 a slice. I know they were Little Caesar’s Pizzas because I saw the boxes in the student activities office, and there was a restaurant near the school.  I passed on the pizza since they were all pepperoni. They must have made so much profit off those $5 pizzas. Gouging! Gouging! I really wanted a soda, but I didn't want to pay $5 for a plastic coconut cup. 

The girl was trying really hard to sell it. I managed to haggle down the girl selling them to sell me a can of soda for $2.50. I was still gouged, but not as much.

 

My crush arrived an hour late he looked so hot wearing a Hawaiian shirt. During the Samoan dance performance I sat behind my crush. 

His girlfriend had a coconut purse. I had him introduce his girlfriend to me. I really wanted to ask him to dance with me, but he and his girlfriend left after the live entertainment.    

 

It was pretty boring. None of my friends went, and I really didn’t know anybody. I met some punks there. They were the friendly punks and not the snobby kind.

 

There was hardly any English (language) music played. The only English songs they played were the “flashback” songs including “Valerie Loves Me” by Material Issue and “Laid” by James. They only played 4 flashback songs. After that they went to lyric less house music.

 

The time printed on the ticket was not the actual ending time. Then there was a dance off between the performers and some kids at the school. It was getting really good until the music abruptly cut off, and the class president got on the microphone, and told everybody to go home because there had been complaints about the noise.

 

In 2000 the student government was concerned that the dance was going to compete with the Lakers’ appearance in the NBA playoffs. Ticket sales to the dance were low. A few days before the dance during the morning announcements the student government announced that the basketball game would be on during the dance. It was game 5 of the Western Conference finals Lakers vs Trail Blazers.

 

Ironically I did not attend that dance, and that was the year my graduating class was throwing it. My class poorly planned the dance, and was desperate to find donated Christmas lights by the students to string in the school’s amphitheater. The student body was willing to give community service hours for every string donated.

 

They booked a punk band that a friend of friend played in.

 

Another reason I didn't go was because of high school girl clique drama; including a former friend who was faking having Leukemia to get attention.

 

That was the year I came up with the “Rally Pikachu”. Which was a Pikachu I used to root the Lakers on to victory. Which didn't work for game 5. Lakers lost.

 

I went in 2001. I had searched the mall for the perfect Hawaiian shirt. It was a garish thing with lime green and pink palm trees. I got it because I thought the colors were girly. It was pretty garish looking. It was almost as bold as something "Weird" Al would wear.

 

That year the school again accommodated for the basketball fans. The game being shown was game 2 of the NBA playoffs Lakers versus the 76ers.

 

The ticket for this dance has the Linux mascot Tux on it. (I didn't know who that was and thought it was just a cute penguin in a Hawaiian shirt.)

 

I watched the first half of the game at home with my dad. I got my dad to drive me to the dance during halftime. I didn't live that far from the school. The halftime show was some basketball players playing "The Weakest Link". I liked watching basketball with a group of people. Usually I watch basketball alone or with my dad. A lot of people came to the dance after the game.

 

The same punk band from last year played again.

 

I was happy there were more people I knew at this dance. I saw my friend there. I didn't even know she was going to the dance until I saw her. That year her mom chaperoned the dance. Her mom was acting like a dork. She kept playing with the Pikachu keychain I was wearing as a necklace charm. Luckily out of all the 7 dances I went to in school either of my parents did not chaperon any of them.

 

Lakers won!

 

In 2002 I went because that was my senior year, and I got in free that year. The school was having a “get laid” lei giveaway promotion. The school again accommodated for the basketball game. It was game 2 of the Western conference finals with the Lakers against the Kings.

 

I had gotten to the dance so early the school wasn't even open for the dance. I saw my friend there with her boyfriend. Luckily her mom wasn't chaperoning the dance this year. I wore all black to the dance since there was this girl who was copying my style. I wanted to throw her for a curve.

 

Before the DJ came out there were 2 punk bands that played. The sad thing was they had to share a half hour to play. So they only got to play for 15 minutes each. Each band had to cut a lot of their songs short due to lack of time. The first band was ok, but the singer sang too low. At the end of their set the drummer threw his drum sticks. I retrieved them, but the drummer said he needed them back. The people with the band told drummer to be nice to me. The second band the singer dressed like Gilligan from “Gilligan’s Island” with a red shirt and a bucket hat. The sophomore student president was going to abruptly unplug the band. The DJ announced the second band before he set up his DJ equipment. There was hardly anybody watching the bands there was probably less than 15 people. I felt bad for both bands.

 

The DJ told us if we had any requests I asked the DJ if he had any No Doubt songs and he told me he didn't have any English (language) music. I immediately thought of the DJ as a bad DJ for not having any English music. My friend and I were shocked. I decided to ignore the DJ by not dancing, and just watching the rest of the game. I started watching during the second quarter. The other people watching filled me in on what was going on.

 

The DJ was trying to encourage people to dance during half time, and even announced the basketball game score. I ran into my friend. I ended buying a pretty awful and overpriced hot dog.

 

We were watching the game while standing on a hill. The tv was at the bottom of the hill. The people who were watching it had me stand at the bottom of the hill because I was so tall. The guy I was standing next to reeked of B.O., and it was hard to enjoy the game. Some other guy suggested the girls watch Dawson’s Creek. That was a trick question it didn't come on Friday nights. I didn't even know why I knew that. I only watched Dawson’s Creek once, and it was after I left high school. (It was the episode about the No Doubt concert)

 

After the game was over and the Lakers won; I got bored and decided to go home. I went home and watched the post game with my dad. 


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MissM Posted on Feb 18, 2014 at 07:57 AM

This was such a fun article about school dances. I never went to mine, but if I had, I feel like I would have shared in a similar experience with you. I enjoyed this, I hope you share more memories like this for us to read.

pikachulover Posted on Jan 31, 2014 at 06:42 PM

Actually the bands did play English language songs the DJs didn't. I only crushed on that guy at school for a year because he graduated when I was a freshman.

Vaporman87 Posted on Jan 31, 2014 at 05:58 PM

Good grief! What country was your school in that there were all these bands who didn't know any English language songs? Oh right, California. lol. ;)

Ah, if there is one thing I can clearly recall it is the feeling of being at one of our high school dances after the football games. Many times, I was like you... sitting on the bleachers talking with friends and imagining dancing with my crush. She, of course, had a boyfriend at all times and was fathoms out of my league, but that just can't stop those dreams, can it.

I can vividly recall the dancing going on to the recently released single by none other than Vanilla Ice, Ice Ice Baby. Yup, every student and his brother was out there dancing like fools to that song. Wow, looking back on it now it all seems so ridiculous. LOL. But man, it was huge when it first hit.

Thanks so much for this pikachulover!

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