Friday, June 06, 2008

In the heat of the gym...

My baby bro, The Gangledorf, graduated from high school this weekend. It was a memorable ceremony, packed with fainting, nervous breakdowns and cheering for odd achievements-- could you expect any less from an event attended by the Kitty? Of course not.

First--The Fainting: Outside, the weather was warm, but not too bad, with a strong breeze (leftover from the tree-toppling storm the night before) to keep things bearable. BUT, inside the highschool gymnasium, with every family member of an over-populated senior class squished into high-rise bleachers (standing room only) and nary an airconditioner in sight (though they did have one really big fan--good for them), it was UNBEARABLE! Like entering a vortex that suddenly plops you next to the sun, hot.

Now, take that heat, top it with a giant nylon graduation gown, high heels, a huge case of the nerves (probably couldn't even eat her breakfast, poor thing) and a make-shift stage, and what do you get? "Could everyone please rise for the national anthem... performed by... CRASH!!!!"
She fainted--fell flat on her face. The crowd gasps. Several teachers run to her aid.

The principal (NOT anyone's pal, unless you play football) says from the podium 20 feet away: "Everyone, everyone, please calm down. Parents, I don't have any idea who that girl was (because she's an academic top 10 instead of an athlete, perhaps?), but I'm sure she'll be fine. Let's carry on and salute some students who deserve some REAL recognition."

And he carried on.

1. He made no effort to go help this poor girl, instead trying to keep the graduation moving along.
2. The apparent reason he wanted the ceremony to keep moving was so we could get to the part where he was planning an impromptu speech.
3. The impromptu speech was 40 minutes long.
4. Did I mention the nearly sun-temperature heat??

1. They spend a lot of time talking about all the athletes in the class who deserve to be recognized for their heroic attitudes (but don't mention all the cheating and drug using).
2. They enjoy incoherent rants about "courage" (winning football games), and apparently four other character words that I didn't quite make out amidst the rambling, but apparently there will be posters next year.
3. They point out graduates with learning disabilities and talk to everyone those students have ever met about their "struggle" to get to this moment.
4. They praise kids who graduated after ending up in wheelchairs, though they ended up in those wheelchairs after drag racing and nearly killing many of their companions in the process.
5. They make sure to mention where they themselves played football in college at least twice.
6. They cry some actual tears about "heroic" athletes.
7. They then cry about the "heroic" athletic directors.
8. They mention where they played football in college again.
9. No body understands the run-on sentence fragment filled words that are coming out of their mouths amidst all the tears.
10. They give 40 minute speeches in 90 degree gymnasiums filled with trapped people who just came to see their kids walk across a stage, grab their piece of paper and turn a tassel on their hats.

Ah yes... but we will have to wait to get diplomas until several other speakers dazzle us with their gems of glorious thought:
1. The Salutatorian- Rambled on about the things she learned in high school, including "you must cut in the cafeteria line to get any food" and "germs spread really quickly when you come to school sick--you can infect the entire student population" and "something about academic teams and nonsense words"... Now, I was on academic team, you didn't hear me talk about it in my graduation speech, however. I'm proud of that fact to this day. NO need to go about spreading the word that you are a prime "wedgie candidate". NO need.
2. The Valedictorian- recycled some dreck about believing what you believe and not what others tell you to believe. (Actually a well-delivered speech, but WHAT a revelation! I mean, come on people...)
3. The Class Speaker (voted for writing the speech that is the best representation of the Senior class)- Compared high school to... Monopoly. "Do not pass go, do not collect $200--go straight to jail, or the principal's office" (I guess if he treats you to an impromptu speech while you're there, it could be considered jail. Maybe this girl was brilliant! Ha!)
4. Some girl warbles a song about "spreading your wings and remembering something".
5. The senior choir ensemble sings about being "33 for a moment--life just passes by...blah.."

They get their diplomas, shake hands with the Colossal Ass in a Graduation Gown, turn their tassels and we get to lea... NO!!!! There's a slide show!!! With pictures from middle school!!!

(I'm not the only one who thought this whole process reeked of idiocy. The Gangledorf, who was wearing an entire SUIT under his graduation gown, says he doesn't quite remember what happened... he couldn't see through the rippling heat waves eminating around his head! He also forgot his tassel, so no turning. We're not sure he officially graduated without that all-important step!)

sitting in the top bleachers, sweating through a white dress at


Blogger The Lumberjack said...

You are hilarious! I do not envy your chance-of-a-lifetime to be a "bleacher creature" on graduation night. Did they really let the Gangledorf graduate?!! Did anyone post warning signs: Beware the Gangledorf is loose & armed with a diploma!

7:49 PM  

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