La Gran Fiesta and Wise Mannie

La Gran Fiesta.

It’s a thing. Spanish teachers put together a nice little thing where enchiladas are served and Jennifer Lopez is played. It’s really fun.


Even as a 35-year-old woman, I kinda liked it. Although I can tell you two very crystal clear epiphanies I had during the evening:

  1. A am a 35-year-old woman at a high school dance and it is the first and only high school dance to which I did not bring a flask of vodka.
  2. Every single photo on my phone feels like a real, live felony and while my job is to document the evening and share it with the world, I need every picture of a person under 18 dancing to very Latin music off my device like, yesterday. Because I feel like I’m going to walk out of the Conewango Club and get taken down by Chris Hansen and Dell from Perverted Justice.

Other than that? Good times.

I was still the weird chick sitting in the corner, answering the question “do you know where the bathrooms are” multiple times. So. Not much has changed on that front in the past 20 years.

Luckily, I was not one of the people who cried.

As Mannie tells me, dances are not dances until someone is in the hallway crying.

That, says Mannie, is why she never went to dances.

After 1.5 hours at La Gran Fiesta I saw no less than three people cry at least once. Not because anything was wrong with the party. Just because they were high school age. And at a dance.

I tell Mannie, I went to dances.

I was the weird girl crying in the hall, I tell Mannie.

“That’s where you went wrong,” Mannie tells me. “You went to the dance. And that is why you were crying.”

Mannie is younger than me, but she is right. About a lot of shit.

Mannie is wise.

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