She holds the dress up to her chest. It is polyester, red. She tilts her head. “Do you like it?” she asks. Her hair is short and spiky, dyed platinum blonde. She is a stunning girl, but it will be years before she comes into her true beauty, wearing her black hair to her chin with a stylish fringe across her forehead. Now she’s a slightly plump teenager, and she has just been asked to Homecoming. She holds up another dress, crushed green velvet, and shifts her weight to one hip. She eyes herself critically. “I don’t think this is my color.”
Her best friend sits on a cushioned chair in the florescent-lit dressing room. She hasn’t been asked to Homecoming. But she watches her friend ambivalently as she twirls this way and that, holding up a golden gown to see if it matches her skin tone, dropping it in disgust for a shorter purple one.
“Did I tell you about the guy who asked me?” the blonde girl says, slipping out of her jeans and pulling her shirt over her head. She looks at her reflection in the mirror, pinches a piece of flesh on her belly. She is tan even in this hideous light. The virtues of being Italian. “He plays football. His name is Matt Lewis. He’s huge, like six foot four. He’s a total jock.”
She pulls a royal blue dress over her head, hideous in later years, but in 1994, it still looks cool. This is the one. It has silver straps in the shape of tiny, linked daisies. A narrow bouquet of silver flowers running over her shoulders. “He asked me ‘cause he thinks I’m gonna put out,” she giggles, and drops the dress to turn and look at her backside in the mirror. She bites her lip, clearly delighted. “He told all of the football players that he wants to bone me!”