Ok, maybe I didn’t discover it, so much as confirm it.
When Zoe joined her select soccer team last spring, there was mention of a fundraiser, but it was so far out that I didn’t really give it another thought. As it got closer, we sold the raffle tickets to win cash or a car, and I vaguely paid attention to the emails coming through about the fundraiser party.
Then I became team manager, and I got an email that stated our team had to sell 6 fundraiser event tickets, and we had sold none. No one from our team had purchased tickets or was planning to attend. I told my husband we needed to go, and thankfully we got a new girl on our team, whose parents jumped right in and bought two tickets. One girl’s parents have a son who also plays for the club, so they had bought one ticket and planned on buying another. That left us one short, so I invited my mother.
I went online to buy our three tickets at $65 a piece. That bought us each a drink coupon, some gaming tokens, and “heavy appetizers.” I figured if they wanted to make a lot of money they should have made it one appetizer coupon and heavy drinks, but I needn’t have worried. ( I’ll get to that in a minute.)
I clicked to purchase the tickets, only to be popped back to the order screen. There was no confirmation, so I figured I must have done it wrong. I tried again. Same thing. I tried a third time (Yes, I Know) only to have the same thing happen. Then I realized I might have accidentally purchased many more tickets than I had intended. I went into my email, and there I found three confirmations of three separate purchases of 3 tickets each, for $585. My husband was going to kill me.
I frantically emailed the club to let them know what I had done, and I got a response from the woman running it saying, “I was wondering what was going on!” Thankfully it hadn’t debited yet, and she was able to fix it.
I knew the event was casino themed. Originally I had misread the invite and thought it was AT a casino. I had skimmed the details enough to know the date and time, but didn’t really read much more than that. Friday afternoon when I was leaving the school from picking up Parker (Zoe was excited to be riding a school bus to a friend’s house for a birthday sleepover) I ran into a friend who said, “I’ll see you tonight!”
I said, “Oh, yeah. What are you wearing?”
She said, “I may have to wear this! I’m on the go today, and the flapper dress I ordered isn’t going to work.”
“Flapper dress. You know, it’s roaring 20’s, gangster themed.”
“Are you serious?”
“Yes, but you don’t have to.”
Now, most people would have thrown their hands in the air and said, “Oh well. I didn’t know, no one will blame me for not running out and getting a roaring 20’s costume.”
Of course, most people don’t have not one but TWO flapper dresses, along with accessories, at their house.
I texted my mother to give her the heads up, and she wasn’t thrilled with the short notice either. When I got home, I told my husband who looked at me and said, “I’m not going.”
“Yes you are.”
“No I’m not.”
“I’m not gonna make you dress up. You’ll be fine. Not everyone is dressing up.”
I looked again at the invitation, and saw that it said to come as your favorite gangster (I briefly considered coming as Justin Bieber dressed as Tupac Shakur, but decided that probably wasn’t what they were looking for.)
I took Nathan to the DMV to get his permit, and the whole time, I was trying to decide if I was going to go in costume or not.
On the one hand, I like dressing up.
On the other hand, these are soccer parents. What were the odds that these sweatsuit wearing, cooler toting people would dress up as gangsters and flappers?
I emailed one of the parents I knew would be there. “Are you dressing up as a flapper?”
I got a one word reply: NO.
When I got home from the DMV I pulled the dresses out, put one on and stared at myself. It wasn’t terrible, although I was pretty sure if I stood in the wrong light, the dress was completely see-through. Also, it was 20 degrees outside.
I pulled on some leggings and a sweater. Jeff came in, took one look at me, said, “Oh,” and walked back out.
I googled 20’s hairstyles and found a messy side bun look with a headband that I thought I might be able to pull off.
When I was finished, Jeff returned to the bathroom. I said, “Does this look stupid?”
He said, “It is what it is,” and walked back out.
Apparently, this is NOT what I looked like:
When we finally got to the event, after dropping Parker off with my Dapper (According to a 20’s website I looked at, dapper means a flapper’s father) and picking up my mother (no term found for mother), it was nearly 30 minutes in.
I anxiously looked around, and other than a couple strands of pearls, I saw NOT ONE SINGLE PERSON dressed in any 20’s attire. Not even the women working the check-in desk.
My husband started chuckling, and found it difficult to stop. He was loving this.
I kept my coat buttoned, but fringe kept making its way out. Besides, hard to miss the sequin headband in my hair.
We peeked in the first room, and located our table number. There was no one in there yet, and since there were desserts lined up along the counter, I assumed this was where the live auction would take place.
We headed upstairs, where I ran into my friend, not dressed up. I said, “NO ONE is dressed up! No one!”
She said, “I think I saw one or two.”
I said, “I feel like an idiot.”
She said, “It’s not so bad. You can barely tell you’re dressed like a flapper.”
I used my drink ticket and started chugging wine.
We went into the silent auction area, and I have to say, I was very impressed. There were a lot of items, and pretty much every item was a great one. There was autographed sport memorabilia, wine tasting events, vacation condos, entertainment baskets, private coaching. If I had to guess, there were at least 200 items.
We checked everything out, and decided to bid on a few things. We made our way back out and went through the food line, settling in to a side table. The first round of appetizers were good, but definitely light. I was a little concerned about my food to alcohol ratio, as I had skipped lunch and tend to be a lightweight anyways. I started planning which drive-through I was going to make him go to on the way home after the event.
I spent some time talking to friends before they called us all downstairs for the live auction to begin. I had counted one other flapper with a feather coming out of her head, and a woman in a black dress and pearls. No gangsters, only one guy with a bowtie. Thankfully, our table was in the back. They had placed us with Zoe’s two coaches and their wives. I’ve socialized with a lot of the team parents, but never with the coaches, so it was a bit awkward for all of us.
The first part of the auction was the dessert dash. We didn’t really know what we were doing, so we found the paper on the table and entered “25.00” on the sheet. Right away someone came and took the form. They began calling out table numbers, to indicate who was the highest dessert bidder. As the tables were called out, they would send one person up to grab a dessert to share with the whole table. Apparently 25.00 wasn’t a lot for a cake, because we were one of the last tables called. I grabbed a dark chocolate ganache cake. My husband said, “There wasn’t any cheesecake?” (FYI he hasn’t dropped the conversation of the cheesecake yet. Every night since he’s brought up how he really wishes we had cheesecake, and he doesn’t understand why we still don’t have any.)
Then the live auction began. The items were amazing- 4 hour boat rentals, guided fishing trips, a condo In Mazatlan. The starting prices were high and went even higher. In between items, they would auction off rounds of shots in rave glasses
or Jell-O shots
Some of these lots were going for more than $10 per shot, with 10-20 shots in each lot. At one point the guy who made the shots came by and handed me one. I took it, and then realized I probably should have asked first what I owed him. Thankfully he was just being nice.
The shots helped loosen the bidding even more. Two different people paid $275 each to get a karaoke party with one of the coaches.
By the time they got around to the big item- the mansion in Kona for 10 days, people were sufficiently boozed up and the item went for well over 8k.
After the live auction was over, we headed back upstairs to pay for the silent auction items we’d won, if any. When we got up there, we discovered that a second round of appetizers had come out, and these were even better than the first. Gorgonzola chicken salad on a puff, Blt’s on mini croissants, pulled pork sliders on sweet rolls with coleslaw. I grabbed a plate and a slider, and went to get in line.
Dang, was that a good slider. One of my favorite food combos in the world is spicy BBQ with fresh coleslaw on a sweet roll.
As I was enjoying this blissful creation, my husband came up to me and asked me a question. I began to answer, but instead, inhaled a chunk of coleslaw straight into my lungs. I started choking and coughing. My husband started laughing. My eyes began watering, tears streaming down my face. He patted me on the back. (Has that EVER worked? Ever?)
He asked if I wanted water, but since the problem was cabbage in my lung, I didn’t think it would help, and all I could do was nod or shake my head and managed to say “won’t help.” He continued laughing. He made all sorts of comments about not being able to take me anywhere, and “You sure did a number on that slider!” “You must have really liked that slider!”
The man in front of me, also trying not to laugh because Jeff was laughing so hard, kept watching me to see if I was going to completely keel over. He left and came back with water. I accepted it and choked out a “Thank you” and a glare at my husband.
He said, “You said it wouldn’t help!”
At this point I’m trying to salvage what’s left of my dignity. It was bad enough that I was overdressed in the strongest sense of the word, now I’ve coughed, choked and cried in front of a couple hundred people. Oh, and I am pretty sure I spewed food as well.
Question- what happens to coleslaw once it enters your lungs? Can you die from it?
For the rest of the time we were there, the man who had brought me water seemed to be watching me, as if waiting for me to do something else embarrassing/entertaining.
By the time I got to the front of the line, I was able to talk again. They looked up my information and found that we had only won one item- a behind the scenes tour at a Seattle Sounders training practice. I knew Zoe would love it. My mother had won some strange sand-like substance. Two boxes, actually.
The event wasn’t over- the gaming tables had just opened. However, I was done. We loaded our stuff in the car, dropped my mother off, picked up Parker and headed home.
As I got ready for bed, I looked in the bathroom mirror.
“Um, at what point did my mascara make its way significantly below my eyelashes?” I called into the bedroom.
He responded, “I didn’t notice it pre-slider incident, but I did notice it post-slider incident.”
Truth is, not only wasn’t I the bees knees, I wasn’t the kitten’s ankles, the monkey’s eyebrows or the Goat’s whiskers.
So instead of ending the evening like this:
I looked more like this:
If anyone asks, I’ll tell them I meant to look like a zombie flapper.