Lessons I learned on spring break

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“Not in­ter­ested in sleep­ing with men and still in the closet, I had been able to use this cover with the teen boys who wanted to be phys­i­cal - I was a good South­ern girl who was wait­ing for mar­riage.”

Your clocks have moved for­ward, the of­fi­cial start of spring is here, and you’re pre­par­ing by plant­ing new seeds and pack­ing old sweaters. At one time you were on the road to a beach desti­na­tion this time of year for spring break, and I was piled in a car with sev­eral friends head­ing to Panama City Beach where I learned th­ese valu­able life lessons:

Vir­gin­ity is a state of mind, de­pend­ing on what state you’re in. I had al­ready been in a re­la­tion­ship with a woman by the time I went on this high school spring break trip, and knew I was a les­bian for life. Not in­ter­ested in sleep­ing with men and still in the closet, I had been able to use this cover with the teen boys who wanted to be phys­i­cal - I was a good South­ern girl who was wait­ing for mar­riage. It seemed to de­ter them in Ten­nessee with­out ques­tion, but when we ran into a guy we knew from home on Front Beach Road, he de­cided he was go­ing to give it one more try. I again said no and he re­minded me that we were in Florida and when you cross state lines “it doesn’t count.” Nice try, but I still said no and he sim­ply started mak­ing out with one of my bud­dies and tried his luck with her.

If it’s your birth­day, any­thing goes. Speak­ing of Front Beach Road, it’s the main drag of Panama City Beach. Dur­ing spring break it serves as a park­ing lot for the scores of stu­dents bot­tle­neck­ing onto the small road to meet one an­other. We made our slow trek with ev­ery­one else on one of our friend’s birth­days and she hung out of our car an­nounc­ing that to the world. Guys re­acted by com­ing up and giv­ing her a kiss, en­cour­ag­ing her mantra to evolve into very slurry, “Kiss me, It’s my birth­dayyyyy!” One guy ap­proached the car and sur­prised us all by ask­ing me if it was my birth­day too. I sweetly told him no.

Never go into a maze drunk. Panama City Beach has some­thing called the Gran Maze about the size of a foot­ball field that you should be able to nav­i­gate in a short pe­riod of time. That’s if you’re sober. We were not, and eas­ily got lost within the con­fus­ing hu­man labyrinth. Add to that the fact we were teenage girls and as a group al­ways en­gaged in laugh­ter to the point of tears. Fel­low maze pa­trons be­gan mak­ing a wide berth to avoid our gag­gle of fools. That’s when our friend in­formed us that if we didn’t get out of there in a hurry she was go­ing to pee on her­self. We made a spir­ited at­tempt to carry this cry­ing, laugh­ing, drunk arm-in-arm to an elu­sive exit but it proved in vain. She had to duck in a pri­vate cubby of the maze as we stood guard and watched her drop her shorts like she was in the woods. Urine poured into the main path­way of the maze as oth­ers stepped over the spillage, which mo­ti­vated us to quickly find the exit be­fore we were es­corted out.

Not sure I will pass th­ese ideals on to my son, but they seemed im­por­tant in 1988. So if you see me cruis­ing down Peachtree spray­ing “Sun In” in my hair and blast­ing Def Lep­pard’s “Pour Some Sugar On Me,” it’s my teenage way of cel­e­brat­ing spring.

Melissa Carter is one of the Morn­ing Show hosts on B98.5. In ad­di­tion, she is a writer for the Huff­in­g­ton Post. She is rec­og­nized as one of the first out ra­dio per­son­al­i­ties in At­lanta and one of the few in the coun­try. Fol­low her on Twit­ter@Melis­saCarter

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