Monday, September 1, 2008

Being A Good Sport

I am all for a good joke every now and again. I have played some doozies on people, but I am very much the hypocrite.

See, I don't like to be tricked. At all. I don't like that feeling of the carpet being yanked out from under me. If you talk to me, I am all for just about any crazy shit you want to do. Want me to do something stupid and humiliating? Hell yeah! I (usually) have no problem going out there and making an ass of myself. What makes me upset is when someone tricks me into doing something that I would have gladly done on my own. I just don't see the point, and it makes me feel underestimated.

My senior year of high school I made the dance team. And in glorious southern high school tradition, we were the Rookies and had to be initiated. Most of it was stupid stuff, and I didn't mind it.

But. When we got our uniforms for the year, the garment bag also included uniforms of dancing past. There was one particularly heinous outfit. They called it "The Pumpkin". It was some god-awful outfit that barely covered my ass and looked like something that Apple Dumplin' would have worn. I kid you not. Right down to that hat. An exact match.

I got a phone call one morning saying that our adviser had decreed we all had to wear The Pumpkin to school. Some excuse was given, and I was livid. Mostly because I don't deal well with last minute changes. I put the damned thing on and went to school.

And the rest of the squad was wearing their regular uniforms. All but us rookies.

To say I was pissed is an understatement.

The reason why? Because if they had told me: Hey, as part of your initiation/hazing week you have to wear this outfit on Friday I totally would have done it. It was ugly. Hilariously ugly. And I would have been more than willing to do my part.

Do. not. lie to me. EVER.

The captain of the squad (and, consequently, the one who had called me about the outfit change) was arguably the most beautiful and popular girl in school. We had become pretty good friends over the summer.

She had an ugly ass cactus car antennae ornament on her car that she adored.

That day? It disappeared.

She fretted about it all week. I kept my mouth shut.

That weekend was to be the final initiation. It was at CaptainGirl's house. A sleepover with stupid tricks to "initiate" us as members of the squad. All harmless, stupid stuff.

As I pulled into the driveway, the senior members got a good look at my car. I had soaped the windows. Rookie Power! Rookies Rock! and all other kinds of nonsense on my windows because I was not going down quietly.

And hanging from my rear view window? That damned cactus ornament with a noose around its neck.

Was I a good sport about all of this? Debatable. I didn't hurt her ornament, but I turned the joke around on her just a tiny bit. She told me later they had never had anyone play up the "rookie card" before and be proud of it.

I've never done things the normal way. I don't believe in hurtful retaliation, but I don't think you have to take things lying down. Whether or not that makes me a good sport I am sure depends on which side of the joke you are standing.

I am sure the cactus thought I sucked.


Sarah said...

I love it! I'm the same way, but extremely gullible. The friends like to take advantage of it but at least it makes them laugh.

Jay said...

I hate that kind of thing, too. I would have been pissed.

Thing about being a good sport is that you have to take it as well as hand it out. So what you did with the cactus wasn't unsportsmanlike, in my opinion. The CaptainGirl had opened herself up as a target by playing tricks on others. End of story. ;)

RiverPoet said...

I have this thing about not wanting to be embarrassed. I would have been supremely embarrassed in the pumpkin outfit, but I think you handled it with verve and grace. Good for you!

(P.S. - I promise never to play a trick on you, if you promise never to embarrass me! :-) Deal?)

Peace - D

Molly's Mom said...

Good for you! You can't take that sh*t lying down!

Krysta said...

i hated high school...

enogh said

A Free Man said...

I like the previous commenter's sentiment.

As for hazing - it's only funny when they don't know it's coming - hence you being pissed off.

Good turnaround though, credit for that!

buddha_girl said...

I HATE the very same things.

We were separated at birth. Of this I am certain.

The cactus? You were kinder than I would have been. You're the Nice Twin.

Not Afraid to Use It said...

@Sarah: I am gullible to, which I think plays into the whole "not being in the know" thing.

@Jay: And I am def not as good at taking it as I am dishing it out. At least I wasn't before. Maybe having kids has mellowed me?

@RiverPoet: Deal!

@Molly'sMom: Thanks!

@Krysta: Same here. Never fitting in just sucks.

@AFM: Yeah, I know that no one else would have gone along with it. And the hazing thing is a whole different issue. Blech.

@Buddha_Girl: Sounds like we bring excellent balance to the universe. WonderTwins, activate!!

Coal Miner's Granddaughter said...

Good for you! That is an awesome ending and I'm with you. I hate being tricked and laughed at. It's horrible.

Gypsy said...

I love it! Stick it to 'em! ;)

Joe said...

No. I do not like being the butt of jokes. I also am not much of a fan of playing jokes on people, because I think of how pissed I would be if it were the other way around. But I usually have no problem going along with a joke.

Plus, I'm not really good at keeping a straight face. I start sniggering, and giggling while I try to say "What? Nothing? I'm completely normal."