Thursday, October 18, 2007

High School -

What a great night I just had, watching Keaton play football for Mountain View High School against the Westwood Warriors. They played very well winning 39-20. Keaton had his name announced several times over the loud speaker "TAKEN DOWN BY NUMBER 54 ... KEATON SHAKER!" and the crowd went wild ... mostly because the crowd consisted of a whole bunch of Keaton fans. So as I sat there in between my Grandma and Keaton's Grandma Carol, Lisa in front of me, Kacey and Natalie next to us, Gary and Vince chatting away with other football Dad's and Jake and Garrison running non-stop with friends - it dawned on me how different my High School experience was.

Let me begin by first describing myself as I was in the 80's. It wasn't really my "fault", because technology had not peaked at this point in time. We had no straightening irons for our hair and head gears were still worn with the braces. It was a different time back then and even the prettiest girl then wouldn't measure up to the pretty girls now. So back to me. I wore glasses until I turned 16. Big deal right? Anybody remember Sally Jess Raphael? Here's a subtle reminder.I'm not sure what would prompt a person to duplicate this look, but I CHOSE those glasses. If they were any bigger ... well they just couldn't have gotten any bigger. It wasn't just the frames though. Ohhhhh noooooo. For awhile I got the oh-so-popular purple tint AND added my initials AND a butterfly to the lower right corner of my lens! So between my awful hair, the glasses and ... oh ya, did I mention my luscious tan? That's a story in itself! During P.E., I was so embarrassed about my white legs that I would wear nylons with my shorts! People would come up to me with a curious look on their face ( because my legs were 15 shades darker than the rest of my flesh) and they would say "Karen, are you wearing nylons?" And I would look them square in the eye with my lip turned up in disgust and proclaim that I WAS NOT!

So, clearly I was not very comfortable in my own skin (literally) and I had NOT figured out how to fit into ANY category. I was a dork. But it's ok because I am no longer a dork and I have great empathy for all dorks around the world!

The story that everyone has been dying for me to share, was on one of my particularly dorkiest days ever. Did I mention that in addition to being ranked lowest on the Physical Attractiveness Totem Pole ... I also rode the school bus. Oh yes. I rode it every day to and from school with some friends, but mostly with the Pima Indians. So are you following this? I was an ugly girl who was transported by bus to and from High School. Oh ya, AND I had no coordination WHATSOEVER! Walking in any general direction was a challenge from day to day.

So one day, I got this incredibly genius idea! So genius that it might just turn my whole life around all in one day! I decided that I would dress up super nice for school ... a skirt and heels ... ooooooohhhh yaaaaaa.

I got up early that morning and I looked like I was headed to a dance rather than school! I had on my nylons, which came in handy when it was time to get those shorts on for PE, and I was going to strut my stuff (since John Travolta had just introduced strutting)! I chose a PURPLE plaid skirt and some killer tall shoes.

I don't remember anything remarkable happening during the day, except that I was extremely uncomfortable. To this day I still don't wear heels! But I had tried something new and it couldn't possibly hurt, right? WRONG!

The bus pulled up to my stop and it was my turn to get out. I had been sitting in the back with some friends and we were talking about our activity we had that night out at the Orange Patch with the boys and girls together! It was going to be so fun! I said my goodbyes and I made my way towards the exit. Have you ever noticed how MASSIVE those steps are? Well, for one who finds it hard to keep it steady on a level surface, it was like an obstacle course. All in slow - VERY slow motion, my GREAT IDEA of a high heel caught a piece of that step action and ... yep ... the ugly girl went tumblin' out of the big yellow bus.

I immediately heard hoards of laughter coming from the bus, and the poor bus driver had no idea how to react since the purple skirt went flying every which way but down. My "tan" was ripped to shreds and blood was now trickling down my knees and shins. I recovered as quickly as I could and convinced the bus driver that I was fine. I made my way down the dirt road that lead to our house, and somewhere in between that blasted bus and my home ... I got the giggles. I got the giggles like I've never gotten them before. Upon entering the house, I was a bloody mess with giggles and Mom didn't know what the heck had happened. I'm sure she'll comment on this, so she can fill in the blanks.

That was it. We got me all cleaned up and I attended the activity that night with bandages placed covertly under my jeans and sleeves. It was the talk of the night ... I had not escaped my dorkness as of yet ... but I did manage to have fun in my own little Dorkville.

High School is hard. I love seeing my kids doing better than I did, but I'm sure there are some horror stories out there that might even top mine. Come on ... share!


Tina McKinnon said...

hahahaha!!! That WAS a 'strange' (I don't want to laugh again!) day!!! That is pretty much how I remembered THAT day, however, I thought you had on a cute, kinda blue-gray mini-corduroy skirt and a white blouse.... (not mini-skirt! mini corduroy!) Whatever, I do remember that you were laughing out of control as I cleaned up the wound! It hurt, I'm sure, but you were just laughing!!! What I don't remember is that your high school was that miserable for you.... I didn't think you were ugly... I thought you were soooo cute! but, what does a mom know?! I was always so impressed with how you could put accessories together and look so good. Oh well.... aren't we glad high school doesn't last forever!?!
love ya! Mom

melmck said...

i hate high school. middle school too. i was always falling. especially on the days we had to dress up because we had a volleyball or basketball game. (the games were the worst.)

a few girls in my class were always out to get me, spreading gossip and what have you. i had the entire boy population, and the entire rest of the girls on my side so no one was affected by it, but i knew how much they hated me no matter how nice they were to my face. yuck.

i feel bad that gracie has to go through any of that. i'm going to try not to think about it now. it's making me nauseous.

Anonymous said...

What a GAME, our Keaton did fantastic. WE WON - So proud of him and all the rest of my beautiful, talanted grandchildren. Wish I had it so good in school. I was a "wall flower", didn't have many friends, was quit and to myself most of the time. I hated school. Everything was so very hard for me, it seemed the more I studied the worse my grades. I didn't start to develope or fill out until I was 15 ( little bumps, no butt or waist), and then I only looked 10 or 11. All the other girls in my classes were wearing bras and looked so grown up with "wow" figures. None of them wanted anything to do with me, and the boys were the same. It was so painful, every day. So funny now, I've gone back to Cohoes, N.Y. (about 5 years ago), and saw a few of my old classmates ( they never left the small town). They envy me now ( and said so) because I look so much younger and better then they do. I couldn't beleive how old they looked. (I felt so much younger too ) So I guess looking younger paid off in the end. I love my life now and wouldn't go back or change it for anything.
mom shaker

Anonymous said...

OOPS- still can't spell worth a darn. Have a wonderful day, mom Shaker

Karen said...

Melanie, I think the part that is exciting to me is that the same thing isn't happening to my kids. High School will always be High School (and I also hated Jr. High), but I think the key might be raising your kids without drama. We are a "no drama allowed" household. I think because of this, Kacey had no room for the drama friends or the drama of High School and was just kind of able to step over it all. There is always going to be some of the heartache that they go through with friends and boys, but that can all be minimized if they don't seek the drama like so many do. You are so easy going, I think you are off to a great start of teaching Gracie that we don't sweat the small stuff. It'll be ok!

KACEY said...

Oh mom. I am proud to call you mine.
And yes, high school sucks..always.

Melissa said...

You are so funny. I only hope that Ellie and Anna can survive high school. I am barely surviving Kindergarten!

Staci said...

Becky had glasses that had a mini smurfette in the corner of them.... hehehe!!! I was also a nerd. I wore white cowboy boots with fringe down the side along with my red wranglers!!!!!! I always wondered why I wasb't surronded by boys....they must have all been intimidated by my beauty and fashion.... right? :)

mrs. bennett said...

Um, can we see a picture please?

Karen said...

I don't have a scanner and I don't know how to get any of my old pictures on here. Good excuse eh?

AmyK said...

I was the cool kid at school .... LOL

Actually, I'd love to know what my mom thought of me when I was in High School.

I wasn't popular but I wasn't a nerd . kind of in the middle I guess.

Oh and I was a cheerleader ... how awful is that?!?! LOL

Anonymous said...

ok karen, I have to take exception to everything you said. Since I was your best friend in high school and since dorks only hang out with dorks, then hmmmm.....does that make me a dork too?

Karen said...

Ann is that you? Dear, you only knew me as a Senior. Falling off of the bus (and many other stories)happened as a mere Junior, so maybe I began crawling my way out of the dorky years by then ... but actually I don't think so! Good friends just see through that stuff I guess. We had fun, but I was definitely a dork. And no ... you weren't.