It’s that crazy time of the year. Every day, my teens come home from school with a story of another outrageous prom proposal.
In the past few years, how you ask a date to prom has become serious, crazy, over-the top stuff. You can’t just ask a simple question like we used to do. Nowadays, it’s got to be big and showy — a public display.
Just this week on Facebook, I saw one friend whose daughter was presented a giant chocolate chip cookie with PROM? in m&ms. Of course, promposals are meant to get reaction, big reaction and are immediately posted on Facebook and YouTube. The word “promposal” has 205,000 YouTube results.
This time of year, no one is safe wherever they go. Promposals could involve loud serenades, scavenger hunts, and almost always they involve videos to capture the recipients reaction. Mama Sass notes that any surface could become a promposal target at any time: “Messages are being scrawled on donuts, Starbucks cups, ping pong balls, scoreboards, sunburned backs, skateboards, puppies, chip bags, juice boxes, pizzas, cupcakes and lockers.”
And, that’s just the beginning of the extravagance. The next step is prom, which now is a giant, expensive event that involves limos, party buses, hotel rooms, ballgowns, updos, makeup and nail appointments, pre-parties and after-parties.
The Prom Spending Survey conducted by Visa in 2013 reports an average cost of $1,139 per couple, a 30-percent increase from 2011. Some experts project a similar increase for 2014, putting this year’s prom at just under $2,000 per couple.
Leave it to this young generation to do things in a big way. Leave to us parents to pay the price.