A phenomenon experienced at school dances
, in particular bar mitzvah
parties. A champagne snowball is essentially a slow dance
that exists to reinforce the social status of all participants.
The young host or hostess of the party stands in the center of a circle created by all of the party-goers. The DJ puts a terribly romantic tune on the turn-table (when I was in 7th grade, Stairway to Heaven was a popular choice for the champagne snowball). The host/hostess must then select one person from the circle to dance with. They dance until the DJ leans up to the mike and seductively whispers, "Champagne snowball," at which point the dancers must give each other a peck on the cheek and select a new partner from the circle. Inevitably, each dancer selects a popular kid. The two couples dance for about thirty seconds until, once again, the DJ utters those two magical words, "Champagne snowball." This process continues, the group of awkwardly slow dancing youngsters growing larger and larger until all of the popular kids have been asked to dance. At this point, the pattern shifts and the popular kids, all in the center of the circle, begin to choose partners from within the circle, ignoring those who have not been asked to dance yet. Thus, we are left with the cool kids dancing in the center while the nerds awkwardly stand on the outskirts, gazing pathetically and enviously into the circle. Eventually, the DJ will tell the folks in the center of the circle to "pick someone who hasn't danced yet," but this never really works.
Finally, after five or so minutes of complete humiliation for the nerds and shining glory for the popular kids, the song ends. The popular kids stay on the dance floor and the nerds shuffle back to their tables to munch on chocolate-covered pretzel sticks...Everyone has been reminded just who's who in the 7th grade.
This is not, of course, something that I experienced as a nerd. Oh no! I am NOT scarred for life. It is O.K. that I was not asked to dance. I'm sure that rejection during champagne snowballs has nothing to do with the fact that I am now a big fat dyke.