JOPLIN, Mo. —
I guess I had it easy as a high school kid.
At least I had it easier than the high school kids of today. When I was in high school it was pretty easy to determine if a girl wanted to go to, let’s say, the homecoming dance with you.
The first thing you did was to approach the girl you wanted to ask to the dance. If the girl, when she saw you walking toward her, didn’t scream and run away, you took that as a good sign. Then if your name was, let’s say, Mike, and she didn’t say “Hi, Merv,” you took that as another good sign. And then if, after you asked the girl if she wanted to go to the dance with you, she didn’t respond like this: “HAHAHAHAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHA! You’re so funny, Merv,” you took that as another good sign.
What you did back then was take your best shot. If the girl in question said “yes,” then you had to figure out what a wrist corsage was and where you could get one. If the girl in question said “no,” you simply nodded your head, went back to your locker, stepped inside, closed the door, crawled into a fetal position and sobbed into your history book.
But that is not how it is done today. As it has been explained to me by our 15-year-old daughter, Emma, teenage boys don’t just ask a girl to go to a dance with them. What teenage boys and girls do is start out by “talking.”
Say I was to ask Emma if a girl she knew was going to a dance, she would say, “Not yet. But she might go with Scooter. They’re talking.”
“About what?” I’ll ask.
“They’re just talking,” Emma said.
“I see,” I said, even though, as I have said many times before, I seldom do see.
According to Emma — and she’s a freshman, so she should know — if a boy and a girl talk and discover the talks are going well, they might move on to the next step of talking about going to the dance.
However, the rules allow either party to break off the talks. The other day, Emma mentioned some kids she knew and said they were talking, but the girl decided she didn’t want to talk anymore.
By the way, you may have noticed that I’m avoiding using actual names in this column. Well, I did use the name Scooter, but that was a joke.
Emma has threatened to sue me if I break any sort of high school code of secrecy in my column. I’m not even sure I should be writing about this “talking” stuff.
When Emma was explaining the whole “talking” thing to me, I said that her friend Katie’s dog, Ralph, might ask our dog, Shilo, to the dance.
“They’re barking,” I said.
Emma tried to hide a smile when I said that.
“Now that was funny, admit it,” I said.
“OK,” Emma said. “It was funny.”
The other thing about asking girls to a dance these days that puzzles me is the fact that a guy just can’t walk up to a girl and say, “Uhhhh, wanna go to the dance?”
Nope, today a guy has to come up with a creative way to ask a girl to the dance. He has to make a poster and decorate it with cute stuff. Or he has to come up with a theme and make the dance request conform to that theme.
As if trying to learn how to tie a tie wasn’t hard enough.
Hey, when I was in high school the most challenging thing I had to do to get a girl to agree to go to a dance with me was to convince her that my family’s station wagon was cool.
That’s right. I took dates to dances in our family station wagon.
I want to discuss all of these new dating rules with my wife, but I can’t. The other day she told me she didn’t want to talk anymore.
Do you have an idea for Mike Pound’s column? Call him at 417-623-3480, ext. 7259, or email him at email@example.com. Follow him on Twitter @mikepoundglobe.
JOPLIN, Mo. —
I guess I had it easy as a high school kid.
- Local News
Old McDonald County Courthouse to hold grand opening celebration this weekend
As Jean Stratton-Bird made her way into the war memorial room at the Old McDonald County Courthouse on Thursday, she came face to face with the memories of her brother Eldon E. Stratton, who was lost in battle in 1943 during War World II. “He is finally home,” Stratton-Bird said.
Murder warrant issued in fatal domestic shooting
Police believe Doyle Handle shot himself after fatally shooting Dena Davenport during a domestic disturbance Thursday night at their residence in Grove. Officers responded to a 6:55 p.m. report of a shooting at the couple’s home on Wood Street on the southwest side of Grove and found Handle, 52, in the front yard with a gunshot wound to his jaw.
Local lawmakers review session accomplishments
Joplin area lawmakers cited accomplishments and disappointments in the just-concluded Missouri legislative session during a brunch Friday sponsored by the Neosho Chamber of Commerce. Measures benefiting veterans issues were addressed in the session that ended a week ago, along with work force and labor issues, lawmakers said.
Diamond High School band prepares for Liberty Bowl
Classes were winding down last week at Diamond High School, but not for members of the marching band. Instead, they dug out some new music and began their first rehearsals in preparation for their next major appearance — the AutoZone Liberty Bowl, which is scheduled for Dec. 31 in Memphis, Tenn.
Stream sampling in Jasper County finds elevated levels of E. coli
Stream sampling conducted just before the Memorial Day weekend by the Jasper County Health Department found elevated levels of E. coli in every stream and river tested. Twenty-one sites were tested on May 22, following heavy rains earlier in the week.
Missouri Prairie Foundation plans BioBlitz for June 1-2 at prairies in Barton, Vernon counties
The Missouri Prairie Foundation’s Denison and Lattner prairies in Vernon and Barton counties will be the focus on Saturday and Sunday, June 1 and 2, of the fourth annual Prairie BioBlitz.
Families, friends invited to honor veterans with flags this weekend
Small lengths of plastic pipe have been installed behind the headstones of veterans graves in Joplin cemeteries so that every veteran will have a flag on Memorial Day.
Mike Pound: Writing column like making pasta
It’s Friday afternoon as I’m typing this and my wife is worried. She’s not worried about what I’m typing; she gave up worrying about that a long time ago. Besides, my wife knows that even though I’m typing right now, I likely don’t have a clue what I’m writing.
Events, activities to honor veterans planned in Joplin area on Monday
No Memorial Day ceremonies are planned at Joplin cemeteries this year or at Mount Hope Cemetery in Webb City, but a number of other events are scheduled in cities around the region.
Area pools ready for plunge; Schifferdecker opening still to be announced
Though this week’s mild temperatures may not signal swim season, most area pools are ready anyway. And, the mercury should rise a little this weekend to help those anxious to dive in. Highs will be in the low 80s today and Sunday. There is a chance for isolated thunderstorms on Monday, but the thermometer should hit 82 degrees, according to the National Weather Service.
- More Local News Headlines
- Old McDonald County Courthouse to hold grand opening celebration this weekend