Tuesday, February 07, 2006

Some things never change...


This past Saturday was to be a special night in the Freeman Household. The occasion? The 6th Annual Father & Daughter Dance at my daughter's school - St. (insert saint here) of the Beloved (insert religious artifact here).

The night was to include dancing, cookies, punch, a complimentary corsage and commemorative photo of the dashing dads and lovely daughters.

Ella was so excited, and her excitement was contagious. All week she wanted to practice dancing, work with Krissy on what she would wear - it was priceless. And I felt like the luckiest guy in the world to be her date.

I also saw the night as a way to put my nightmarish experiences of school dances behind me.

Jr. High Christmas Dance - Not only did I get a date, but she actually started playing footsie with me under the table...until her boyfriend showed up and put his footsie up my ass.

Freshman Holiday Dance - the answer is yes, I can fit inside one of those skinny hallway lockers.

Carol's Sweet 16 Dance - My girlfriend and I got into a huge blow out fight right before the dance. I spent the rest of the night trying to find out which punch bowl was spiked while she wandered the room looking for someone to penetrate her.

My Senior Prom - Couldn't get a date DESPITE the fact that I had a girlfriend. How's that for a confidence booster. All was not lost, the first Batman movie premiered on the same night.

Amanda's Senior Prom - I got completely roped into taking this sweet girl to her senior prom by a friend who was taking one of Amanda's friends. Nevermind that I was a freaking Sophomore in college - the entire night was awkward. First, at the "pre-prom BBQ" all the girls gathered with their dads for a group photo. My date's dad had recently passed so...that was awkward. All of the other couples were real couples so we were the only ones not making out all night. Even the slow dances were painful. We then went into to NYC to a comedy club (I was the only one old enough to order drinks! Yay me!) Then we ended up on the beach where everyone else had sex and Amanda told me how cool she thought my college girlfriend was. Last I heard, Amanda was a lesbian.

So in a effort to make my little girl's first dance all about me, I was really looking forward to turning over a new leaf. I was taking a girl I know really loves me, who HAS to come and go in my car and basically is dependent on me for all facets of her existence. Yeah, this one would be different.

Ella and I get all dressed up. Well, to be honest, I got dressed up. Ella is ALWAYS dressed up because my wife uses her as her own human Fashion Barbie. At three she always looks ready to strut her stuff on some runway in Milan within a second's notcie.

We rocked out to the Wiggles and Laurie Berkner the whole ride there. Nothing like a little music to put your date in a good mood. We held hands all the way from the car, through the parking lot to the auditorium. Man, she was totally digging me.

Outside the rose covered atrium into the hall were a wide selection of corsages for the ladies to chose from. Ella wisely chose a rose/lilly combination that brought our here eyes and accented her intoxicating scent of Pepperidge Farm Goldfish and Grape Juice Box.

But, as we entered the hall, Ella froze. She is incredibly social so I was surprised when she was completely overwhelmed by the dim lighting and the DJ blasting some kid's rendition of "We Got the Beat." She would not go in. Dashing fathers and daughters strolled passed us on the red carpet (yes, there was a red carpet) as if they didn't have time to talk to all the papparzzi that should have been there.

After 15 minutes my patience was wearing thin so I resorted to ol' Faithful. I bribed her with food.

We each took a heart shaped sugar cookie from the snack table. A water for the lady, a pink lemonaide for myself and we retired to one of the several round tables that spotted the room. You can't just dive right into a party, you have to scope it out first. Survey the room, feel the vibe. Besides, there were M&M's on the table.

After the cookie and beverage I asked my date to dance and of course she accepted. I took her hand and we moved towards the dance floor when suddenly....."Ella!" "Ella!"

Ella's friend Olivia came sprinting towards her. They hugged and almost knocked each other over. After a few moments passed I took Ella's hand once again, "C'mon sweetie."

"No. I don't want to dance with you."

With that piercing "no" so many memories come flooding back to me in such a rush you would have thought I just figured out who Keyser Soze was.

"I want to dance with Olivia." Damn, Ella brought a wingman.

So I stood and watched Ella and Olivia dance. I half expected this to happen, after all she is only three, but as I looked around the room all the other little girls were dancing with their dads.

One dance, two dances, I thought they would have gotten it out of their system. After all, my daughter spent the last 7 days telling me how she couldn't wait to dance with me. Suddenly Ella turned, this was my shot...

"Dad. Cookie. Water."

Wincing I could feel my Jr. High date's boyfriend's Nike still lodged up my ass. Somethings never change.

Over the next few hours I stood a few steps behind Ella while she danced with Olivia. Her "They Shoot Horses, Don't They?" pace was only broken up by the occasional blood curddling scream she emitted when I took her hand or asked her to dance. I would have been better off standing against the wall with Anthony Michael Hall, John Cusak and that other guy selling floppy disks to all the other dipshits.

The rest of the night was like one awful acid flashback of all the horrible dances I ever attended punctuated by the following slightly notable events:

- Two dance teachers came out to show all the dads and daughters an authentic hip hop dance routine to impress mom with. It was to the tune of C&C Music Factory. Even the music hasn't changed since the last dance I went to. Needless to say, these two instructors were wearing such tight leotards the dad's spent more time staring at their asses than learning to channel Boogoloo Shrimp.

- A girl scout troop got up on stage to perform an impromtu routine to some god awful Ashley Simpson song. I think I blacked out.

- I noticed a lot of the dads were way comfortable on the dance floor and it would not surprise me to learn a few of them went home together if you know what I'm sayin'...

- At least Ella danced with some Dads. She wouldn't be seen with me but had no problem "cutting in" on other little girls and their dads. Each time the guy would have this strange look on his face like, "Who is this little girl that just hip checked my daughter out of the way and is now doing the chicken dance with me?"

- I managed to pry Ella away to :30 seconds to get our commemorative picture taken. Ah, a memento of the night that almost was.

Of course now that everything was winding down Ella threw another fit because she DIDN'T want to leave. There had to be an after party somewhere right? Where were all the cool kids going? Skybar? Dolce? Rain? Didn't Lindsay, Paris and Tara pop out the backdoor into a waiting limo?

Finally the night ended with me dragging my date kicking and screaming to the car...

So at least I still have a perfect record when it comes to how all my dance experiences end.

1 comment:

Aunt Elise said...
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