Wednesday, May 16, 2012

We went to a gala.

Who'd've thunk it?  11 years.  (and p.s., Who'd have thunk a triple contraction?)
On Cinco de Mayo, there was a gala benefit & auction for John's school.  Because they offer a Spanish immersion curriculum, they need more money (the state does not pay for Spanish versions of math & science textbooks).  So every year they have a big party and everyone dresses up.  We couldn't go last year due to a baseball game.  This year I really wanted to go and Brian really didn't, so I texted him one day with this simple message: GOING TO GALA.  WOULD U LIKE 2 B DATE OR SITTER?

And that was the end of that.
This year the party was held at the Children's Theater, and it was fabulous.  Very festive and well organized.  But walking into that room felt like entering a senior prom when you're in 9th grade. There was everything from long, flowy, chiffon (possibly recycled bridesmaid) dresses to pajama bottoms and a sportcoat. 
(Side note:  If something is underlined or in a different color, or BOTH (like "Children's Theater" above), you can click on it, and it will take you to an explanation.  This has come up via email a couple times lately regarding the words "slacks" and "earbug" in previous posts).

Unhappy with my own dress-up options (which included too tight, too wintery, or too eggplantish), I borrowed a dress from my friend (thanks Lauren!).   Actually, I borrowed several dresses from several friends and let Brian choose (thanks Elizabeth, Susan, Vanessa & Leda!).

I wish I could tell you that Brian chose the one that Lauren wore when her daddy was inducted into the Country Music Hall of Fame last year (see pic below), but alas, the color of that one made my skin look autopsy-ish.

Below is Lauren and her father, Bobby Braddock ("He Stopped Loving Her Today" (George Jones), "D-I-V-O-R-C-E" (Tammy Wynette), and most recently "People are Crazy" (Billy Currington).
Here is my friend. She does not look like death. She never does. She writes books and songs and acts and mommies a first grader and teaches water zumba in addition to being cute.

(I want to, but just cannot bear to get going about how my friend's dad was inducted with Reba, or how my friend got to meet Reba while wearing a dress that is hanging in my closet but which I couldn't wear on account of already spending nearly $200 on gala tickets and a babysitter and thus not being able to afford a spray tan.  You see, I am a recovering Rebaddict.  There was a period in my life when I essentially lived under the bottom shelf in my walk-in- loset, with nothing but a mirror, a bag of make-up, and some Reba tapes.  Fancy was MY name (except the part where Fancy becomes a prostitute due to her mother's encouragement and poverty).

But I digress ...

To the gala I wore a different Lauren dress: a black and white strapless floral number with red piping, accompanied by red patent flats & lipstick (sort of a 50s look) ... roughly this, but with more show-stopping lipstick:

Brian wore an all-black-Johnny-Cash-like outfit with a bolo tie.  It was his special theme for the night because part of the silent auction was a two-canvas painting his sister did of The Man in Black:

Prior to the event, there was an online auction.  Then the first activity of the night was the silent auction.  Finally, after dinner, the event culminated in a live auction with a real and not-as funny-as-he-thinks-he-is auctioneer.

We did not bid on anything.  (See previous note about inability to get spray tan; same logic applies.)

There were lots of supercool things up for grabs, including John's 1st grade class art project (Mrs. Torbert's class), which went for $450.  Mrs. Davenport's class art project yielded $600.  She either has an inordinate number of budding artists, or a bunch of kids whose parents are doctors. VIP tickets to Bonaroo went for nearly $2,000. Another big ticket item was dinner for 11 people from a popular local restaurant & entertainment from the Viktor Krauss Band (yes, Alison's brother -- her niece and nephew (Viktor's kids) go to school with John).  Et cetera ad nauseum.  They raised $60,000. 

Yes, an entire upper-middle class income.

I was pretty horrified by the live auction, considering that there are hungry children less than a block from where we were partying, but prior to that we had been served cream-cheese-stuffed jalapeno peppers wrapped in BACON, so I was tolerating it.  But I'd like to end this paragraph by saying that this is just one more example of why there is inequity in public schools. 

One of the worst moments of the night was when my friend Margie got up to give her PTO President Thank You speech.  (Margie was one of the members of the Wilson-Phillips trio that I headed up last fall at another fundraiser.)  The speech was fine, but one of the audience members -- who has a kid in John's class -- thought it would be really cute and funny to sing a verse of "Hold On for One More Day" at the beginning of the speech.  And the first verse was sort of humorous.  It was the second and third verses and all the choruses and bridges in between that somewhat dampened things. 

And all this time I am alternately thinking about local hungry children and reminiscing about the bacon-wrapped jalapenos. 

So anyway, we spent a lot of money and didn't bid on one thing.  But such is the life of two teachers.  At least we have time off to garden and listen to old Reba tapes from the tape deck of our 1995 Geo Prism (thanks Bruce!).


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