Experts Agree...

May 22, 2000

Prom - Just a high school (dys)function?
   by mike <>

Hey.. do you want to go to prom with me? It'll be great. We can don overly ornate costumes with lots of little pieces *cough* tuxedos are evil *cough*, eat a dinner that tastes like horsefeed, dance pathetically to a mediocre band, and then collapse on each other in an alcoholic daze. Won't that be great?

That may not sound appealing, but for some reason high school students all across the country are attracted to this seemingly insane annual ritual. They must find the concept of dining uncomfortably and flopping around afterward like intoxicated sailors completely magnetic. Just enlist in the Navy, dammit.

To find out just what is so great about this dysfunctional high school function that claims as its victims countless juniors and seniors, I dove undercover and took my high school senior girlfriend to her prom.

The first thing that I noticed was the inordinately high-priced ticket. $170 per couple? How can that be correct? Shouldn't it be more like $17 per couple? Surely, if I'm forking over one hundred and seventy hard-earned dollars, I'm going to get more than a balding singer with the voice of a pubescent Steve Urkel in return, right?

Of course, that was just to get in to the dance. There are still other costs we must take into account:

Tuxedo Rental: $70
Limousine Transportation: $150
Corsage and Boutonniere: $36.64
Women in low-cut dresses: Priceless.

Once the evening began, my girlfriend and I piled into a cramped limousine with two other couples. Inside these confined quarters we attempted to make conversation but ended up just trying to breathe. We had to keep reminding our driver, who turned out not to speak a word of English, with "No, you can't make a left turn on red." and "That was a stop sign you just went through." Of course, my confidence in his abilities was unwavering.

Upon arrival at the actual dance, we sat down, socialized with people we didn't even know, and then began our meal. Sure enough we enjoyed undercooked chicken whose taste rivalled even that of airline poultry. After such a savory feast and not waiting an hour after eating, we all jumped onto the dance floor to make complete jackasses out of ourselves. What some call rhythm, I call a seizure. You say "Electric Slide," I say "I'll die first." Me? Dance like that? PFFT!

Following the spectacular display of how to control muscle spasms, most couples crammed into school buses to embark on yet another journey: a cruise on Lake Michigan. This was truly the best part. Honestly, I paid absolutely no attention to what was going on around me. The upper deck of the vessel was unlit and uncovered, so my date and I spent our time up there, uh, stargazing. Yeah. I took off Orion's Belt, and she went at it.

All-in-all, prom isn't truly the cult ritual many people criticize it to be. It's merely a mating ritual of the adolescent. Many gentlemen enter the prom prepared to score. Nearly the same number leave the prom in a wheelchair, having been clocked in the nuts by an offended young woman. To sum it all up, it's their balls at stake - what's it to you if they're out to get them flattened? Let the kids have their fun. Either that, or sit at home and bitch about how the girl you really like said she wouldn't go with you.

She and I had a great time, by the way.

Published: May 22, 2000
Editor: robin

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