You know when you get stuff maybe as a present or for a birthday or possibly it's a handout a church or an old textbook and you look at it and think, "When will I ever use this?" But then maybe it's something quirky and you think, "But what if I need it someday?" I have a hard time throwing those things out. I end up with stuff in my closet that I'll wear maybe once a year, or I end up just storing the stuff somewhere.
Waaaaaaaaay back when I was in fourth or fifth grade, my friend Sarah had a birthday party. For some reason I was late to it. I can't remember why, but I think it may have conflicted with a family or a church activity. Anyway, when I got to the party, I was given a mask and a name for the party. It was a murder mystery party, and I became Nicki Lodeon. I got to choose from the reject masks (all the red and cool-colored masks were gone), and I found an owl-like one that was brown and black with white feathers that extended to the sky. I actually was a little sad about it because I didn't think it was as cool as the purely sequined ones that other people had, which today would probably look pretty darn cheap. I had missed quite a bit of the murder mystery part, so I hardly used the mask. In fact, I just remember that they were watching a dirty, dirty movie that was inappropriate for my age, so I hung out a bit in the kitchen with the food. When I got home, I ended up putting the owl-mask in my closet, thinking that I might use it someday if I ever had a masquerade to attend, which I thought would be cool. (Back in those times, I believed that when I grew up there would be all sorts of social events to attend like ones that are in old-time movies or in books. What a sad, pathetic, non-social-eventy world we live in.) And it has pretty much stayed there since, even through our family's move to our current location. I remember finding it a few years ago, taking it out and almost, almost throwing it out. I plucked the obviously old and yellowing feathers from the top and threw those out, but I kept the mask.
Well, yesterday there was a masquerade ball that I was invited to attend. The proceeds of going to the ball were being donated to a good charitable cause, and I had always wanted to go to a masquerade, so I decided to go. I didn't really have a nice ball gown that fit me, so I ended up going shopping for one at the mall yesterday with a friend. I found a nice basic one, and when I got home, I planned to look for the mask. I wasn't actually sure if I still had it or if I had decided to throw it out. But, after about 30 seconds of searching, I found it! You see, there is practically a whole shelf in my closet devoted to nostalgic stuff. (Cash may be interested to know that there is a certain stack of yellowing kitty stationery sitting in my garbage right now because of the mask search. So sad to see it go, but it's time.)
So it turned out that I ended up using the mask after all. It came in handy, and I think it even looked pretty good with my dress, which is black and white. Thinking back on those other masks, I am really glad that I got the leftover owl-mask. It works better now that I'm older. And even though the numbers were sparse at the dance and we pretty much had the worst DJ not manning their laptop that was on shuffle, I had a really good time at the masquerade. I guess that I thrive at dances where there are fewer people. Those end up being the more memorable dances for me, and they tend to be more fun because I end up feeling like I need to dance, so I dance like a fool and go with it.
I'm really glad that I kept that mask, even though I really didn't think that I would ever use it. And while it's still pretty cheap-looking, I loved it for this masquerade. Wahoo for not throwing out junk!