Friday, September 15, 2006


This evening I was driving around in Jonesville. Jonesville's where I grew up, and it's only about 10 miles or so from where I currently live, so I go there often. Well, this evening around 6:30 I was approaching one of the main intersections (We have, like, TWO), and saw a whole bunch of people of various ages gathered along the street.
"What is this?" I wondered aloud to myself. "What's wrong?"
Then I heard a fire engine blast its horn and saw it slowly inch through the intersection, flashing its lights. "Weird," I thought, and pulled over to the side of the street. I sat and watched for a moment longer before realizing what it was all about.
This was no fire-related tragedy. This was the start of a parade.
The Jonesville High School homecoming parade.
This should give you some idea of how uninvolved I am in my alma mater; I didn't even know homecoming was tonight. I vaguely remember what homecoming was like in the olden days when I was a student. I was in band, and therefore had to march in the parade, and attend the football game, and be in Pep Band, and play at halftime, blah blah blah. I am not exactly a team-spirit person and football might as well involve a kangaroo and a pair of tweezers, for all I care.
But I digress.
So I was watching the little parade for our little school, and sure enough, there was the band, marching by. Except they weren't playing anything, they were just marching to a cadence and shouting "GO!" now and then. Eventually I heard the drum-major's whistle, and the startup cadence, and then they played the school fight song. Once. Just once, no more. (When I was in band, marching in junk like that, we'd play the fight song at least three times throughout the parade). And their uniforms, oh my goodness... the uniforms looked so normal, compared to the weirdo stuff we had to wear back in the mid 80's. Rather than the usual marching band uniform one would typically think of, these things we had were freaky. They were some kind of hot uncomfortable wool/polyester stuff, in orange and WHITE, (odd, since our school colors were orange and BLACK), with bell-bottom pants and a cape. Bell-bottoms! A cape! As if we were orange hippie superheroes masquerading as marching-band people. (Yeahhh... here come the flashbacks.) So poor Janna, with her pleasingly plump figure, wearing this uniform.... I looked kinda like a cross between Roseanne Barr, Superman, and a Florida orange.
Those were the days.... I think I need therapy now.
But, back to the parade...
After the band went by, there were the cheerleaders ("ooh, rah-rah-rah, I have exactly three functioning brain cells... here's hoping they don't fall out when I do cartwheels later on..."), then there were the homecoming floats. I remember two of them, the other two must not have been that memorable.
#1) Guy dressed as The Grinch, standing next to a Christmas Tree and a football goalpost, with a sign that said "Jonesville Stole The Victory!" (I don't know... wouldn't it be better if we earned the victory fair and square?)
#2) Guy dressed in football uniform. Another guy dressed as "Uncle Sam", holding a big styrofoam stick, beating up on the football guy. I have no IDEA what the theme was for that one, though I admit I'm curious....
Then there were other nameless parade participants dressed in Halloween costumes (Hello, isn't it still September?).
And, just like that, just a few short minutes after the parade started, it was over! Short and sweet! (Well, short, anyway.) But it still felt twilight zoney, like I had momentarily been transported back about twenty years. Today was the first time I'd heard the high school "Fight Song" since... well, since high school.
I still hate parades.
And homecoming.
And football.
But at least I don't have to wear capes in public anymore.

1 comment:

Kyle said...

I hated Homecomming as well. The uniforms were terribly hot and uncomfortable..and for 3 years I marched Bari Sax...which..sucked. However, the 4th year, I marched Piccolo which was probably 40 pounds less on my neck..and still the hot, uncomfortable uniform. The band always wanted to play "Dude look like a lady" when the homecomming court walked down the field. It was mildly amusing. I hate marching band..I did enjoy parades every once in a while, but never again. No more marching band....ever........