Thursday, September 29, 2016

floating through high school

It's Homecoming season for area high schools.  Remember Homecoming?

The pageantry?  The athleticism?  The school spirit?  All that teen drama?

I vaguely remember.  It's been a while...

But I do remember the floats.  Our school always had a Homecoming parade on the Friday afternoon of the big game.  Each class would throw together a cheesy float based on the year's Homecoming theme, and we competed for 1st through 4th place.  I don't remember there being any particular "prize" other than the pride of winning.  Yes, a week o' fun with chicken wire, paint, and lots of kleenex!

So, join me on this little march down memory lane, won't you?

For future reference, our school mascot was the "Mighty Miners" (coal mining town, what can we say?).  Okay, so my freshman year, the theme was the uninspired "Year of the Miner".

Yeah, not a whole lot to work with there, but we created this lovely entry featuring a big ol' football helmet and goalposts on the field (ignore Mike sitting in the endzone.  He wasn't there for the crucial parade and judging)

My apologies for the black and white photo, but that's what yearbook photos looked like way back then.  Toldya I'm old.

Anyway, darned if we didn't win first prize!  Yeah, go stupid freshmen!  

For my sophomore year, the theme was "Miner Magic", which was a little better theme than the previous year, but we ended up with this sorry looking thing.

So it's like a fairy godmother thing?  Maybe?  Hard to see, but she has a magic wand and she's turning a coal bin (miners remember?) into a bin of gold.  Supposedly.  Third place.  ppfffftt.

Junior year, things picked up a little.  That year the theme was "Miner Fantasy" ooooooh.  Not a big jump from "Miner Magic" maybe, but we were determined to redeem ourselves from the creepy mannequin lady thing.  We created this awesome castle, complete with ivy vines and opening/closing drawbridge smashing a tiger (that year's opponent)

Note also that we moved into the super modern world of color photography that year.  We were robbed as the judges took pity on the seniors and gave them first place while we got second.  Fine.

So, my senior year, I felt that all the stars were aligned.  We had a super duper football team and my class ruled the school.  Surely, our float would win top prize for the theme "Miner Extra-Terrestrial".  Hey, I don't come up with the themes, I just go with 'em...

We had this great idea to make a flying saucer, complete with tractor beam, coming in for a landing on the football field.  It would bring back our glory days as 1st place freshman float makers with the field and goal posts! It would be flashy!  It would be inspiring!  It would be Extra Terrestrial!!

...or it would end up looking like a blueberry muffin.  

Okay, in all honesty, I admit that it became forever known as "The Big Blue Boob".

Yes, our last year of high school, we took last place in the Homecoming float competition. Could've used a bit more chicken wire maybe?  On paper, we figured we'd have first place in the bag. Turns out we were mistaken.

Linking up with MamaKat again for this week's prompt:

5. Write a blog post inspired by the word: mistaken.



  1. :) once upon a time i believe a float should only float like a balloon.
    the schools here don't do floats, mainly we do a lot of processions, marching in uniforms or any kind of costume.
    Still, nice pictures of the floats.

    1. Well, they are called "floats"!
      Our Homecoming floats were pretty shabby, but we always had a good time making them.

  2. Homecoming was so long ago! I didn't get into the festivities at all, but kinda wish I had after seeing all your fun pics. Big Blue Boob. Ha! Looks extraterrestrial to me. :)

    1. The extraterrestrial big blue boob? That works too.
      Those days WERE a long time ago. The world is a different place now.

  3. I am so happy that you have photographic proof of all these floats...and just that you were proud enough to snap the pictures and keep them forever. This is awesome. We didn't do floats so I'm living vicariously through you!

    1. Our parade was just like the Rose Bowl parade! Except... not.