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Glenda Marshall: Grinding is a high school epidemic

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Glenda Marshall: Grinding is a high school epidemic

Glenda Marshall received the Ventura County 'Female Student of the Year' award and will be honored on December 12 at . Credit: Aysen Tan/The Foothill Dragon Press

Glenda Marshall received the Ventura County 'Female Student of the Year' award and will be honored on December 12 at . Credit: Aysen Tan/The Foothill Dragon Press

Glenda Marshall received the Ventura County 'Female Student of the Year' award and will be honored on December 12 at . Credit: Aysen Tan/The Foothill Dragon Press

Glenda Marshall received the Ventura County 'Female Student of the Year' award and will be honored on December 12 at . Credit: Aysen Tan/The Foothill Dragon Press

Glenda Marshall

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My biggest regret in high school is that I did not attend more dances. Some people might say that Winter Formal and Prom are just overpriced excuses to say you have a social life, but I disagree. Dances are an essential part of the high school experience, and whether or not you like to dance, just the experience of getting dressed up and hanging out with friends makes for a fun night.

 Unfortunately, it was only recently that I came to this realization, and I skipped more than a majority of high school dances I could have gone to. If I had a time turner, I would probably go back in time and change that, but unfortunately, I am not Hermione Granger and don’t have that option. So, rather than dwelling on the things I wish I had done, I decided to make up for my losses by going to this year’s Winter Formal. After all, it is my senior year, and I have to enjoy the rest of my time at Foothill, in all its quirky, hilarious glory, while I can.

 I was a little disheartened to find out that I was the only one in my group of friends who didn’t have a date to Winter Formal, but despite the fact that I was going to be third-wheeling like no one’s business, I knew that I would be kicking myself with regret Saturday morning when everyone’s pictures began to invade my newsfeed, so I bought my ticket regardless.

 If you are curious, I had a blast and danced ridiculously, just as any 17-year-old girl should. But that isn’t why I am telling you all of this. About halfway through the night, I seriously began to consider why I hadn’t attended Winter Formal or Prom my sophomore and junior years. Laughing with my friends, I couldn’t think of a concrete reason. But then I looked around.

Sure enough, I quickly remembered the biggest turn off of high school dances: grinding (a.k.a. that atrocious thing that some of you call “dancing”).

 To all of you students out there who use high school dances as an excuse to grind like there’s no tomorrow, you should probably know that most of the people who are so unlucky as to accidentally catch a glimpse of your “dance moves,” usually turn away in utter disgust at your lack of class.

 Looking around the dance floor last night, I was honestly shocked at how inappropriate and appalling some of you acted. Some of you were so into your dancing that I thought you were only minutes away from literally taking off your clothes on the dance floor. I don’t know whether you just really wanted a thigh workout doing all that squatting, or if some part of you actually thought you looked cool, but everyone else who looked at you wanted to vomit.

 Newsflash: it is a high school dance, not a strip club. No one wants to see you rubbing your butt on every living entity in the building.

 I don’t mean to be rude, but I think that someone really should tell you that you looked like a complete idiot. And, honestly, I feel bad for you, because I guarantee that more than a few of your peers and teachers lost a lot of respect for you watching you move your body like that. Maybe you didn’t see the way people looked at you, but I certainly did, and I can guarantee that plenty of people have the same opinion as I do.

 I think it is sad that this is what high school dances have come to: crazy teenagers practically having sex on the dance floor. It is revolting, inappropriate, and unsophisticated.

 So as a last note to all of you grinding fanatics, please keep your repulsive dancing to a minimum and get some class. There are plenty of places you can go if you want to act like that and the rest of us don’t really want to see it.

What do you think?

23 Responses to “Glenda Marshall: Grinding is a high school epidemic”

  1. Eeew...why did you have to do that? on December 15th, 2013 4:56 pm

    Yep…this is why the teacher chaperones volunteer to man the door, the parking lot, the patio…anywhere but the dance floor. Dance floor duty falls to our admin team, bless them! Your teachers love to see you dressed up and looking so mature, but that mental image and every other positive image is utterly erased by the that type of dancing…we are often embarrassed on your behalf when exposed to this behavior at a dance.

  2. Alumni on January 18th, 2014 4:00 pm

    please, you were a teenage before too.

  3. Joe on December 16th, 2013 2:52 am

    Honestly, as a person who attended Foothill who is now living a decently successful life at a four year institution, I think about that culture in high school (which I will sadly admit, I was a part of for a short period of time) and how juvenile it was. To those out there thinking it is the “hip” thing to do, you might as well use the term “hip” in a non-condescending manner, because grinding becomes just as much of the past as the term “hip” is. I am sure that you all think it is so great, believing “oh mah gee, this is totes what makes me dope, college lyfe will luv me”. Wrong. You will see the kind of people that still participate in that activity in college and then you will compare them to the people actually having fun just dancing and not giving any cares of who is watching and realize “hey… grinding is stupid.” and it is like making out in a crowded elevator. Nobody wants it.

  4. Ms. Pelfrey on December 16th, 2013 9:36 am

    I think that the saying “Dance like no one is watching” does not apply here, as this phrase has connotations of following one’s heart in spite of what the madding crowd is thinks. In this case, please dance like someone is watching. Because people are. Grinding doesn’t look like a joyful expression of the self. Rather, it looks like there is no self to express. You are simply imitating the affected hyper-sexualization prized in the lowest common denominator of popular culture. Ms. Marshall is correct; a high school dance is not a strip club. That reaction you feel if someone suggests that you watch your parents grind at a dance? That is how most of your teachers feel when we see you do it; a great, big, visceral “Ewwwww.” I think that parens should help chaperone dances. Maybe if some of them joined the dance floor in lobotomized grinding, you would think twice.

  5. Peter on December 16th, 2013 10:27 am

    Dancing is a form of self-expression. If the activity was truly inappropriate, why didn’t the chaperones stop it? This is a very harsh assessment. Sounds a bit like sour grapes on the part of the author.

  6. Is it Really, Peter? on December 16th, 2013 10:45 am

    Peter, think about the kind of self-expression your giving off by grinding. There really is no kind of attributes of grinding that can be considered “self-expression” other than sub-primitive. It is purely sexual without the actual sexual act therefore debasing it even as a primitive act. If you want to self-express, dance like a normal person and actually have expressions other than “I am aroused, but am in high school and possess low levels of maturity”

  7. I agree with Peter on December 16th, 2013 3:59 pm

    If something truly inappropriate happens the administration will stop it, ESPECIALLY at Foothill. Other than that people are just making mountains out of molehills and need to calm down and let kids enjoy themselves.

  8. The fact of the matter on December 17th, 2013 5:32 pm

    Actually, admin did step in and stop “it” quite a few times on Friday. I saw the intervention with my own eyeballs a couple of times.

  9. John Brown on December 18th, 2013 7:06 pm

    Dear Glenda,
    I saw that you were female student of the county or something like that, you are obviously pretty smart. But did you really not see grinding at a high school dance coming? I honestly don’t find grinding classy or that fun, but I feel that I should defend it because you were not constructive with your arguement what so ever. Judging by your little article I think it is fair I assume that you have never grinded before. In my opinion that is a part of “the high school experience” which you have clearly not gotten. Even more so I think that if you were to go to a dance with a date of your choice you might actually be tempted to grind just out of curiosity. Also where else is a high school student able to do something like this? Are they supposed to stoop even lower and get drunk then hook up? I’d say that a dance is a pretty good way for students to “test the water” in a sense. In the end, I don’t think that such a large amount of a student population should have to change their “dancing” because you and a minority of other students are so absolutely “disgusted” by it. Understand that it is a reality of most high school dances, mentally prep yourself for it, then go and enjoy yourself and try not to pay attention to the horror of grinding occurring around you.

  10. I disagree, John Brown on December 18th, 2013 9:42 pm

    Dear John Brown,
    1. A lot of things can be considered part of the high school experience, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re smart things to do. A lot of people consider drugs part of the high school experience, but that doesn’t mean everyone should take drugs.
    2. I think that all Glenda was saying was that people don’t have to go overboard being openly sexual in public. I think she just meant they should get a room, not that they should go “get drunk and then hook up.”
    3. There are plenty of teenagers who never feel the need to grind “out of curiosity.”
    4. She definitely stated in her column that she had fun regardless of any grinding that took place.
    5. She was suggesting that students shouldn’t grind because it’s immature, not because it bothers her personally. She only said that she thought it was gross.

  11. John agree and disagree Brown on December 18th, 2013 10:10 pm

    1. I don’t quite consider grinding on the level of doing drugs, but to each their own on the components of a high school experience.

    2. I think the administrators and/or teachers are there to break up anything to sexual as it is a “fromal” dance. Hahaha “formal”.

    3. On the other hand I’m pretty sure most teens are somewhat curious about some sort of sexual activity. Whether they choose to pursue it at a dance or not is up to them, I was just saying that I most definitely believe that this is much better way than many other ways teens have found to do stuff of that nature.

    4. I’m glad she had fun. The dance was a good time.

    5. I believe a minority of people (at least that attend dances) see it the same way Glenda does, but good for her in being so mature.

  12. Mrs. Kindred on December 20th, 2013 6:03 pm

    John Brown, where is your mother? Is she aware of your proclivities?

  13. Andrew G. on January 16th, 2014 1:47 pm

    I am outraged by the lack of social acceptance grinding has gained.

    Grinding is a completely natural, beautiful ceremony that stems from the primitive desire to thrust ones pelvic region onto the opposite sex.

  14. Alumni on January 18th, 2014 3:42 pm

    All I can say is GROW UP. You are not going to like things in life, and you are going to have to deal with them. Grinding, Twerking, is a form of self expression, some people are just out there having a good time. Like they’ve mentioned above, if anything really bad truly happened, it would be handled. But you guys are teenagers and this is the most sexual times of your lives. Let’s be honest, you can’t completely help it, it’s in your brains. “It’s revolting” people said the same thing about gay’s kissing in public, NOT A GOOD EXCUSE. Though I am completely befuddled on how Mrs. Wantz, let you tell a general population to “get some class.” and that they are “unsophisticated”. You basically just called a good amount of people trashy. How pretentious of you to think you are “classy” because you don’t grind. I am tired of the ignorance in which is Foothill Technology High School, Joe Bova, and Ventura.

  15. Alumni on January 18th, 2014 4:03 pm

    Oh BTW this is Devon Henderson Class of ’12. No shame in my game.

  16. Ummmmm...what? on January 21st, 2014 12:32 am

    Ummmmm…wut? I don’t see how gays have anything to do with people twerking at all. Please, stop making non-linked arguments to justify this. “It’s revolting” can be a perfectly legitimate argument for things such as: making out in a crowded elevator, walking through a playground naked, being drunk around children. All of these things are not inherently wrong, but, are still considered “revolting” and are generally understood as poor behavior.
    Also, I do not see what ignorance you are claiming the school, principal or city possess. Ignorance is lack of knowledge and clearly there is no lack of knowledge by any of the following parties on the matter, they just have, to this point, chosen not to punish any of the aforementioned actions (which could easily be changed,especially when it is said they are “ignorant” on the matter). And please, do not equate grinding to being classy. Sure, it may not be the worst of the worst or even necessarily morally wrong, but, it is not in the slightest “classy” and you would be out of luck if you tried to prove otherwise. So, please, better formed arguments that are less personal attacks would be a better use of everyone’s time.

  17. Eeew...why did you have to do that? on January 18th, 2014 4:27 pm

    There are appropriate places for behaving in an overtly sexual manner. A school dance is not one of them. Just like making out should not happen on campus at lunchtime…a brief kiss or hug, maybe, but not some of the behavior I see daily. I was a teenager, yep…would not have thought of rubbing up sexually on someone in plain view of my peers and teachers nor locking lips with either gender during school and on campus. I have respect for myself and others.

  18. Devon Henderson on January 18th, 2014 4:48 pm

    So are you saying people who behave in an “overtly sexual manner” don’t have self-respect? I was prom prince and I know I twerked all over the dance floor, and I definitely have self-respect. Just cause someone who has pride in owning their sexuality doesn’t mean they don’t respect themselves. Isn’t that the beautiful thing about growing up? We all experience life, and we’ll hopefully learn from this, and change and form our own morals and ideas. Maybe I will too, but right now I’m not because I am young and have the freedom as an individual to express myself. This has been a part of high school for decades, and I say making out is a standard in high school. If you don’t like it, change your profession, or work at a private school where you can reinforce rules of “sexual behavior containment”. Or if you want real action, make a bill for the school board, or for the state of California. Dancing is dancing, and like I said if it get’s too out of hand, then stop it. Otherwise deal with it and move on. Welcome to the 21st century.

  19. Eeew...why did you have to do that? on January 28th, 2014 9:18 pm

    Actually, no, I did not say that. In fact, I implied that there are places where it may be appropriate to act in an overtly sexual manner. However, I firmly believe that a high school-sponsored event with minor children in attendance is NOT one of them. Behaving in way that respects other people’s preference not to watch others be overtly and obnoxiously sexual in fairly public places that are not designed for that pasttime is having respect for self and others. Sure, be proud of your sexuality as a consenting adult. That doesn’t mean having to display sexual behavior at a school-sponsored event. Being sexy and displaying sexual behavior public are different. Save sexual displays for your “beau” and intimate friends at a private party or over 21 dance club.

  20. Devon Henderson on January 21st, 2014 1:10 am

    Just cause you do not like it, doesn’t mean I can’t link it. Get over yourself. I was calling Joe Bova, Foothill Technology High School, and Ventura ignorant for a whole different reason, but it looks like the students who go there, are the same as ever. And please do not tell me what I can, and cannot equate anything to, who are you? Nobody. I’m fabulous, and you are…well… you’re you. I would gladly come back to Foothill Technology High School, and have a great debate with you, but I’m too busy getting my Bachelors at SFSU. I worry about FTHS so of course I have to keep in touch, see what’s going on, but I’m so disappointed. Open your mind, and stop judging. You’ll be a happier person.

  21. Again...Ummmmm...what? on January 21st, 2014 4:47 pm

    Well, talk about pretentious. Calling me a nobody because you go to a state school. Please, trust me, I am excelling at a much higher university than your 54th Regionally Ranked institution, but, good on you for judging otherwise. Also, nothing about my comment on your post was judgmental at all, in fact, the only judgement between you and I is on your part for having assumed otherwise. The only thing I did was poked holes in your argument as well as addressed the fact that grinding itself is not “classy”. I said nothing on whether the people that do it are classy or not, but, that the act itself is not. Examples of places you typically would not see such behavior: Presidential Balls, balls in general, any business event or any professional setting. On top of that this subject has nothing to do with gay rights and I was merely acknowledging that you’re argument of how things that are revolting should be allowed because of gay rights is flawed and could be used to justify many “revolting” things.
    So, before you just drone about how “fabulous” you are, actually read what counterarguments against you are and address them before you make personal attacks. Don’t be bitter just because someone disagrees with you.

  22. Devon Henderson on January 22nd, 2014 1:22 am

    I never said you’re a “nobody” . I said you are you, Don’t get it twisted, if you felt offended. not my fault you don’t feel highly about yourself. No one was judging, I simply stated a fact, that I am busy getting my Bachelors at SFSU. Didn’t say I was better than you. There is no “droning” here, I’m stating a true fact, I AM Fabulous. Don’t be bitter cause you don;t like what I have to say. You countered my argument, let’s remember that, you came for ME. It’s really okay, you don’t have to justify yourself or ideas to me, because, it’s irrelevant, but this is fun, i’m living for this 😉 :*

  23. Final Comment on January 28th, 2014 9:32 pm

    ” And please do not tell me what I can, and cannot equate anything to, who are you? Nobody.”

    Oh puhlease, you bigot. You cannot even recall what you said, I see. And trust me, it does not matter how highly about myself I feel (though I have no problem with a well-placed ego), it has no effect on my arguments (as evidence: look at your ego and arguing skills compared to mine). Personal attacks aside, have fun at your “higher institution”. Hope it works out.


Comments on articles are screened and those determined by editors to be crude, overly mean-spirited or that serve primarily as personal attacks will not be approved. The Editorial Review Board, made up of 11 student editors and a faculty adviser, make decisions on content.

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