Snoopy sleeping after promDear Kid,

Things I have learned about prom. This may not seem very important I know; but it is, so I’m bothering telling you so. (OK, it isn’t really important, but I love the quote. Extra points if you know where it’s from.)

Corsage. BackInTheDay wrist corsages were held on by uncomfortable elastic that never stayed in place (leading to wobbly flowers). Today, the uncomfortable and wobbly elastic has been replaced by an uncomfortable but highly stable slap bracelet.

Photos. Photos are a fancy occasion ritual and prom is no exception. Fortunately, digital film is free and there is no wait to develop pictures (yeah, I’m old, I get it). There is a reason pix are taken at the beginning of the evening: very few people look as good (or as awake) at the end of prom night.

Cost. You have rotten parents. This is not news to you, I’m sure. Turns out there are many families that spend a gazillion dollars (over $1,000 in some places) on average PER CHILD on prom. We decided you’d prefer to eat for the rest of the month. Sorry kid.

Entering the dance. The term “prom” comes from the word “promenade,” which means to parade in with your escort in a ridiculous and highly old fashioned way. At least in our neck of the woods, couples show up sooner or later to the dance and enter at will rather than waiting to stroll in as procession. The term prom has stuck around anyway.

Attire. As I mentioned, a Lot of Work goes into formal attire. It is really nice seeing all you people cleaned up so nicely. You really look spectacular when you try. (Note: there is frequently much less work put into attire for the afterprom, for which everyone [except the retail store owners] is quite grateful.)

Shoes. You know I love shoes. You know I love shoes more than chocolate. But—and I feel strongly about this—people ought to be able to walk in the shoes they have on their feet. I’m not suggesting you have to wear shoes all evening. But if you can’t at least walk in and out of the venue in your shoes, you have (imho) two choices: learn to walk in them or get different shoes.

Royalty. According to the internet (and you know they can’t put anything on the internet if it’s not true), many proms have a king and queen. Or some version of court royalty. (Court jester, anyone?) I know that around here there is a whole voting-for-the-court for homecoming thing, but I don’t know that prom gets the same royal treatment. Thoughts?

Afterprom. Around here, afterprom is an OverTheTop extravaganza. I think this is fabulous as people want to go to afterprom (often skipping prom in the process) and stay there. This is a wonderful alternative to doing your best to escape afterprom and ending up in a car sideways in a ditch on the side of a mountain. Not that that would ever happen. Although I dined out on that story for years. I mean, someone could have dined out on that story for years. If it had ever happened. Which it obviously didn’t. And just for the record, I wasn’t the driver.

The Day After. The day after prom should be a day to remember the night before (hopefully with fondness). It should be a day for finding out how everyone else’s experience was. As with any all night event, it should be reserved for sleeping enough to return to human status and completely throw off your sleep cycle. It should not be a day to growl at your parents because you are tired.

Sleep well, Kid.

Love, Mom