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Thursday, September 17, 2009


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photo from dxportal.com

Here in our neck of the woods it is Homecoming season. This means that young men all over the state have devised creative ways to invite a young lady to attend the Homecoming dance with them. This dance is a first for my oldest boy, who deliberated much over how to go about asking his date to accompany him. He decided to have a cheese pizza delivered to her with a note under the lid which read,

"I hope you don't think this is cheesy, but will you go to Homecoming with me?"

The next day he received her response; a bottle of Sunny Delight with this note attached:

"Look here, SUNNY, I'd be DELIGHTed to go to Homecoming with you!"

I thought that both the inquiry and the reply were very clever. Maybe even something they'll remember years from now. I, for one, will never forget one such occasion in my teenage life... the time I asked Mark to Homecoming.

I know what you're thinking; don't the guys ask the girls to Homecoming? Traditionally, yes. But I was never a very traditional young woman. It did not bother me in the least to be the one doing the asking, especially if a particular boy whom I may or may not have been precariously close to stalking for the previous 3 years had not asked me yet. Tradition? HA! I just wanted a date.

Like my oldest son, I carefully thought over the different ways of asking. I finally decided to place a wind-up alarm clock beneath his bed, set for 3:00 am. When the alarm would sound, he would scramble beneath his bed to find the source of the racket and find a note which read,

"Don't be alarmed! It's just me, Gerb, wondering if you'll go to Homecoming with me."

My carefully devised plan was to stealthily sneak into his home through a sliding glass door which was left unlocked, position the clock, and then leave undetected. This may or may not have required my missing a couple of classes during school hours. The clock was planted and I made my escape. The rest of the day I was consumed with giggles as I would think of the look on Mark's face when the abrasive noise woke him early the next morning.

I was still giggling as I crawled into bed that night.


From beneath my bed! Disoriented, I bolted upright and then raced haphazardly about the room for a moment before realizing what was going on. I crawled underneath my bed and retrieved the source of the commotion. It was a wind-up alarm clock! At this point I was coherent enough to realize that this was supposed to be surprising Mark, not me. How did it get here?! But none of that mattered when I read the note attached to the clock:

"Don't be alarmed! It's just Mark saying YES!"

I was elated. The next day I called to ask him what had happened. Had I inadvertently set the alarm for the wrong time? How was the little clock discovered early? Here is Mark's story:

He arrived home from school and went to his room. The first thing he noticed was an unfamiliar ticking noise coming from beneath his bed and the first thing he thought of was a bomb. He asked his dad, who was a police officer, to investigate. His dad called in the bomb squad, who discovered the source of the mysterious ticking noise (couldn't resist adding that link) and turned it over to its rightful owner. Mark then devised his plan to surprise me with my own surprise.

To this day I do not know if this story is the truth or a fabrication on Mark's part. However, I do know that it makes for an awesome legend in my personal history.

Even if it is a bit alarming.


ablackman said...

We'll have to do that pipe-bomb at Hogwarts thing at the next family reunion.

That must have been one extraordinarily loud alarm clock for you to have noticed it that early in the morning.

Rebecca said...

I wish I had a cool story like that from my past. The only similar story I have was a creepy one, because it wasn't for homecoming, it was just a guy who was trying way too hard. I never tire of your stories, and you never seem to run out of them! Win, win.

Cami said...

Only Utah Mormons do the whole creative acting thing. Or maybe it was just that I was the only Mormon girl in my grade at school. It was always a simple, "Hey, you want to go to the dance with me?" in the hallway.

LauraB said...

And there are many a homecoming request and response to come. Though I feel for the young ones, they'll have quite a high bar surpass:)
Thanks for your posts Gerb. They always brighten my day.

Teachinfourth said...

I laughed at this, Gerb. Once-again you've not failed to deliver...

Anaise said...

How fun! I was all set to compose a sob story response about how I never had such fun things happen to me, but then I remembered that before we were married Scott invited me out for my birthday by creating fake plane tickets and then getting one of his pilot buddies to fly us to Catalina for the day. Creative dates and date requests are really fun--perhaps I should surprise him with something clever one of these days. :)

You're an inspiration!

Gerb said...

Blackman- The kids all have it memorized already so it ought to be a cinch to pull off.

And yes, that alarm clock was alarmingly loud.

Bec- You just described my life, only I have always been the person who is trying too hard (a.k.a. stalking). Stalking is WAY underrated.

Cami- I was the freakish California Mormon who went to EFY in Utah every single summer of my teenage life and was determined to bring a part of it home with me. I was always all about making things BIGGER and more exciting.

LauraB- I hope you're right! I live in fear that my girls will have to endure the same trials I did as a teen, including staying home with a carton of ice cream and a sappy movie during a dance or two. That's why I decided to start doing the asking. ;0) Thanks for reading. I have enjoyed your blog posts as well! (I am such a stalker!)

T5th- I'm glad you enjoyed it. It wasn't what I started with but it was what I ended up with. And if you ever need a good laugh, there are plenty more where that one came from...

Anaise- How fun! You should surprise Scott sometime. I think we often forget to continue dating our spouses, especially after the kids come along - but that is likely when it's needed most!

AzĂșcar said...

A boy used the alarm under the bed to ask me out for a dance in high school.

The problem was I'd recently spent time in London when there had been a number of IRA bombings. While sleeping, I heard the ticking and incorporated it into one of the most terrifying nightmares I'd ever had. The IRA had set a bomb and my family was the target. I still remember it in detail and it's been 16 years.

Gerb said...

Azucar- Whoa. That sort of blows my story out of the water. Did you say yes?

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