Presidents’ Day Ball

On this snowy night our school celebrates Washington’s Birthday with a ball. I imagine many gorgeous girls in gowns and lively lads in their liveries. I imagine because I am not there with them. My roommates have gone to the ball and I shall hear from them how lovely the venue was and how brilliantly their drinking glasses sparkled. Now perhaps you want to ask, “Say Sammie, why didn’t you go?” It’s alright, I’ve been asked many times and each time I give some unexciting and rationale response.

But let us examine that question. I have never heard anyone ask, “Why are you going to Presidents’ Day ball?” Granted we mutually understand that you want to go because it will hopefully be an entertaining night whether one finds his or her pleasure in dressing up, fancy places, dancing, or all of the above. But it’s interesting that we would much rather ask why one does not go as if the normal reaction to an upcoming ball is to attend. In reality there seems to be so many more reasons to not attend than to go out of your way to participate.

Besides the fact that there are many people who do not find a ball as an exciting event, in which case it could be seen as just another party with no pressure to have to go to, there are people whose desire to go is just not greater than the payment to go. Some would rather go with a partner or not go at all. Some would rather stay home and rest from their busy lives. Some would rather not take on the hassle of having an outfit to wear for the occasion. Some would rather do something quieter, perhaps with family or friends. Etc.

Whether genuine curiosity is the root of why we question someone who will not attend such a social function let us see the effects of this question. Instead of asking myself why I wanted to go I found myself consciously asking myself on what reasons would I not go to the ball. Basically, it is like changing the question, “Do you want to go eat pizza and go shopping today?” to “Why aren’t you eating pizza and not going shopping today?” I found myself preparing an answer to why I was not going whereas if I were going I would hardly think twice about why I was going since the expected response would simply be for fun.

There is nothing wrong with doing this of course but it’s always fun to think about the reasons we ask some questions so naturally. It’s probably good to know where one stands on going to an event like Presidents’ Ball and why. It sometimes reveals things about you.


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