It’s been awhile since I’ve updated on my ASL classes, but this is worth a blog post.
We were in class like usual, learning to count from 20-30 or something like that, and all of a sudden, our teacher looked out the classroom door.
“The other class is going to see a boys basketball game,” he signed to us (technically, that’s a translation, since sign isn’t a written language). “Would you like to go? 15 minutes?”
The guy next to me nodded enthusiastically. “Yes!” he signed.
Geez. High school boys’ basketball, I thought. Like there’s anything a 4’11” person could care less about. Plus, I’m in the middle of learning how to count to 30, thank you. But I smiled and shrugged and signed, “yes,” with what I hoped was a good-natured face. The other two men in the class (funky weather makes attendance low) also signed their assent and we all traipsed outside through the rain/snow to the gym.
It was awesome.
Having grown up in a small town and gone to a small school, this high school basketball game was very, very familiar. Just a few things were different from the games of my youth. For one thing, the buzzer was the LOUDEST buzzer I’ve ever heard! And there were lights around the hoops to signal the starts and ends of periods. The refs signed all their signals and stopped the game with their hands as well as their whistles. For those of you who actually care about basketball, the teams seemed pretty evenly matched, with the away team being slightly ahead at the end of the half.
But the cheerleaders were my favorite. They were so reminiscent of my high school days! Cute girls in blue-and-white uniforms, but one thing was different- they were absolutely silent. No yelling or clapping interrupted their smiles, but every single move was absolutely in synch. Their rhythm was perfect and the moves were intricate and energetic, so the halftime show was very well-done.
I think the best moment of the night, though, was after the halftime show but before halftime ended. The cheerleaders were re-grouping in the hallway when one stopped to talk to her dad. She was asking him why he hadn’t gotten somebody’s phone number for her, and he was desperately trying to defend himself. It was such a perfect high school moment and every eye-roll, every huff and foot-stomp reminded me what it was like when everything hinged on that one all-important phone number.
It was nice to be reminded that I’m not just taking these classes so I can count to 30!