Tuesday, May 17, 2011


I better tell this story before I forget it. Our son, Jimmy, went to the senior prom over the weekend. He's only a sophomore, but his girlfriend is a senior. If it weren't for Jo, he would have been completely unprepared.

Jo: Are you going to get her a corsage to match your boutonnière?
Jimmy: What's a boutonnière?
Jo: It's the flower that goes on your lapel.
Jimmy: What language are you speaking?

In the end, Jo made the corsage out of crepe paper streamers and antique buttons, proving she can make just about anything out of virtually nothing. She's like MacGyver minus the mullet. Anyway, Jimmy and his girlfriend arrived at their friend's house for a pre-prom party and realized they had forgotten the paper corsage. So Jimmy gave me the address, I google mapped it and headed out. It wasn't hard to find. There were balloons leading me right to where I expected it to be. I asked the gathering of proud parents on the porch, "Is this Megan's house?"
"Yup, everyone's inside taking pictures."
The door was open, so I let myself in and looked for Jimmy among the crowd of football players in tuxes, girls all done up for the big night, and parents taking time off from appearing in the L.L. Bean catalogue. But I didn't spot Jimmy anywhere.
"Has anyone seen Jimmy? Jimmy Curry?"
"Wait, don't take the picture yet, we're missing someone. Jimmy who?"
"Um. . . is this Megan's house?"
"No. . ."
That's when I realized I was standing in a stranger's house uninvited holding a paper flower. Later I thought about all the things that had gone wrong to put me there.

1. Jimmy forgot the corsage.
2. I was given the wrong street number.
3. The number I was given did exist, so google maps couldn't catch the mistake.
4. There were balloons leading right to where I was expecting the house to be.
5. The parents out front didn't know whose porch they were standing on either.

I eventually found the right house about half a mile a way. The rest of the night went off without a hitch. They're pretty careful around here. All the students had to pass a breathalyzer test to get into prom, which is probably a good idea. I remember when a group of prom kids came to stay at the resort I was working at about 10 years ago. They went on a drunken rampage, smashing golf carts and windows until the cops came and rounded them up. The cops had no problem identifying the troublemakers. It's hard to blend in with the tourists when you have a boutonnière on your lapel s'il vous plaît.
Wait. What?