Juxtapose

The music was loud.  But Mrs. Liza Burtrell couldn’t help tapping out the beat with her pointed shoe and swaying her shoulders back and forth at the same time.  How she wanted to step in the center and dance with them. Loud music still did that to her.

Kids.  They thought this was all new and they wouldn’t have the time of day to listen if she got out there and started explaining, while she danced, that this little welcome-to-the-new-school-year dance was the same as the old-fashioned donut at Dunkin’. It obviously wasn’t so old-fashioned because they still fry up the same old recipe.  Only with modern equipment.

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Photo by Daniel De Kay

Yes, that strange scent of warm floor wax, buffed under the scuffle of dancing shoes, sent her back in time in a heartbeat.  She gazed over the group of pulsing children with a nostalgic eye. Miss Head Cheerleader over there set her feather earrings swaying because they are “awesome”.  In Mrs. Butrell’s day they were “groovy” but they were the same earrings.  Another young lady, trying way too hard to impress her crush with her dance moves, wore metal bracelets that made the same ping-ping-ping that Liza’s best friend Mary Lou’s had when their new-year sock-hop was all the rage.

Okay, the dancing was quite different.  Yes the dancing probably had her chaperones turning in their graves.  What exactly was her job then?  Choose the battles.  The bump and grind was nothing next to pot in the bathrooms or vodka in the punch.  Or in the gummy bears.

Still the same flies were drawn to the same honey, the same wallflowers wondered either why were they here or how could they become popular. Liza could definitely relate to those expressions; she’d seen them on dozens of faces and probably her face knew the configuration still.  Same old lanky boys still tried to make their limbs work in rhythm. Same old gossipy girls told hurtful stories.  Only on text messages or by phone pictures.

Maybe she needed to look closer. Perhaps old Mrs. Burtrell was still looking at Saturn with the naked eye. Liza would be a better observer with a better lens.

Did she want to see more? Maybe.  Maybe not. It was nice to think that youth wasn’t quite as far away as it was.  Or that there wasn’t as much innocence that had been lost.

Year start got a little stranger every new one that rolled around.  Perhaps it was time to retire and spare herself this bumpy ride down Memory Lane.

But the music was loud.  It was time to dance.

———————————–

I was so looking forward to being back to this today!  Almost didn’t make my deadline.  All kinds of strange things happened tonight to keep it from happening.  I’m editing after hours, but hey– Here is the prompt for today’s piece from The Write-Brain Notebook by Bonnie Neubauer, from Day 241:

Write down the following:
Something you buy in a bakery: Old-fashioned donut
A smell from a museum: floor wax
An automibile manufacturer: Saturn
Something people use to adorn themselves: earrings
An expression that is overused: awesome
A sound from a child’s toy:   ping-ping-ping

Use all six.  Start with:  The music was loud

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