MillyMellophone doesn't want you to look like a dweeb while you're toting that sousaphone around. Here's how to march it out with style.—Sparkitors
From the ill-fitting uniform to the mortifyingly gooney plume, high school marching band is essentially one big glob of awkward—especially for girls. If you happen to play a “boy instrument” like I do, you are likely to feel twice as out of place at football games at first. There are, however, ways to make you feel less like a cross-dresser (unless you’re into that sort of thing).
1. Dirty jokes are a fixture in every marching band, especially if you play the trumpet. In my experience, the optimal way of dealing with this is to laugh reluctantly. Decent “That’s What She Said” jokes are hilarious and should always be met with appropriate chuckling. “Get Back in the Kitchen” jokes, however, warrant a swift punch in the shoulder.
2. Wear earrings with your uniform if you’re allowed to. This will add a feminine touch to whatever bucket of a hat you are being forced to wear. Limit it to studs, though. Otherwise it’ll really stink when your earlobe gets ripped in half by a trombone slide.
3. Don’t be a mess. If you're allowed to wear your hair out of your “bucket hat,” you should. Wear it in a neat ponytail; loose and/or sloppily-done hair may result in your looking like you just emerged from a cave. A polished ponytail gives the impression that you DO know what the hell you are doing holding a mellophone.
4. Don’t be a complainer. A great way to ruin a football game for everybody around you is to be that kid who whines the entire time. “It’s cold,” “We’re losing,” “Dear God, why didn’t I play the flute?” are all unacceptable ways to deal with marching band. Plus, you’re perpetuating female stereotypes. Shame.
5. Figure out the basics of football. You’ll be watching the sport all fall, so you might as well know what’s going on. It can be embarrassing to be that girl who asks, “Wait, was that good?” after each touchdown.
6. Be enthusiastic. If your whole band or section is participating in a cheer, it’s best to join in. Nobody likes that killjoy who ruins whisper down the lane, just as nobody likes that one band member who won’t sing “Hey Baby.” Get into it!
Hopefully, these tips have helped you to feel less like a cardboard box in your uniform. Maybe one day you'll even grow to like it (that’s a lie). In all seriousness, it can be tough to be a girl doing what has traditionally been a guys’ activity. Keep in mind that you should stick with it—you'll learn a ton, and you’ll definitely make a ton of new friends. Or boyfriends. Who knows? Anything could happen, because you look DAMN good in that bucket you're wearing.
We love this post, even though we never had to wear a marching band uniform. Quick, somebody do a hilarious post on how to feel less awkward in your cross-country team spandex shorts!
Related post: Marching Band 101