Homecoming: Fraternities and Sororities and Tissue Paper

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Shannon Gray
11-28-11
Essay 4
Pomped Up for Homecoming
The long nights of folding colored paper into meticulous shapes over and over again until your fingers are raw and bleeding. The even longer nights of unfolding the paper, fluffing it up and sticking it into chicken wire. This is called pomping, or also known as placing squares of colored tissue paper to boards. It is also a way to decorate plywood boards that are just a small part of a larger float. Chicken wire, lots of colored plastic sheets and power saws litter the basements and backyards of sorority and fraternity houses all over campus throughout the months leading up to Homecoming week. Pomping is a thorough task which every new sorority member is required to participate in before homecoming. Starting three months in advance we go to the fraternity house which we are paired up with and pomp. Each week is something different. The first night is a “get to know them” party where we bake them goodies and meet our “pomping partner”. A pomping partner is someone you are paired with based on your likes and dislikes. This is the person you are paired with each night of pomping. Now let me tell you, you get really close with this person especially when we pomp twenty hours a week. Each week of pomping is different. The first couple of weeks you fold tissue paper into a six section fan shape. Each tissue paper is different colors. There is brown, red, white, yellow and black. Colors depend on the theme of each sororities float. The next few weeks you then unfold all the tissue paper you have folded previously and connect it to chicken wire. The chicken wire is layed out on a flat table with tape outlining where we are supposed to place the tissue. This process alone is very rigorous. We spend hours upon hours putting pomp into this chicken wire to form a huge float in the end. We also are given pomp on weekends that need to be completed and turned in by Monday. Several weeks later after all the long hours...
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