Any dance that you attend as a middle schooler seems vitally important, but a Halloween dance where you are required to wear a costume adds even more pressure. My best friend, Jessie, and I weren't sweating it, though. And that was because we had thought up the best costume idea ever! We would dress up as an old nerdy couple--Jessie would be the man, and I would be the woman.
Idea set, we threw ourselves into finding just the right pieces with which to assemble our outfits. We even asked our parents for money so that we could go shopping at our church rummage sale. It was there, among the smell of moth balls and old cabbage, that we hit the jackpot. There was not an item of clothing there that had been worn by someone under the age of 83, and other than Jessie and me, that was also the average age of the other rummage sale customers. I narrowed in on a lovely burgundy-colored polyester dress with a floral print that had a matching jacket. If it hadn't been perfect for my costume, I probably would have purchased it anyway as a gift for my Great Grandma Bessie, as it would have set off her poodle-perm quite nicely. I rounded out my look with a black patent leather belt, ugly costume jewelry, cat-eye glasses that I had bought at neighbor's yard sale, and some rolled down ankle hose. My mom helped me to achieve the height of nerd chic by slicking my bangs and giving me a bad make-up job, complete with lipstick on my teeth.. It was also her brilliant idea to have a piece of toilet paper hanging from the back of my dress as an added touch.
When I met up with Jessie at her house, she looked just my equal with her Hawaiian shirt, suspenders, and plaid polyester pants. We were a couple made in nerd heaven, and we couldn't wait to get to the dance to show off our costumes. We thought that nothing could ruin our fun that evening.
But we quickly changed our tune as the first slow song drifted out over the dance floor. It then became painfully clear to us that no one was going to ask us to slow dance. Not even John Paul Risnear. You see, even though our costumes were funny, we had not counted on the fact that no middle school boy wants to be seen dancing with an extremely nerdy girl--or a girl dressed as a guy, no less!
After an evening of slow dances spent sitting in a corner, we went from looking like nerds to feeling like nerds--so went the transformation from best costume to worst costume.
|The "Nerd Couple" in all our glory.|