For the typical American teenager in high school, their senior prom symbolizes a culmination of their social life for the past four years. For some seniors it is their last night of reckless partying with their buddies. For some teenagers it is that last chance to let the sparks fly with that secret crush. Attending the senior prom has been an American tradition for centuries. An American coming of age experience, Prom is something that parents enjoy to share with their children. Although the symbolism has remained the same, the costs and post-prom celebrations have altered with the ages. While the prom experience may seem tacky or excessive to others, it is a rite of passage that gives closure to their high school career.
Planning and organizing the entire night is usually the most stressful part of this American tradition. While a special committee is organized to decide on the dance theme, the right decorations and the killer band or do; the individual student has to find the perfect specimen of the opposite sex to take as their date. It is usually unheard of to attend the event alone, so weeks previous to the date, boys and girls alike hunt, scour and flirt to find that perfect date. Some are lucky enough to have a steady girlfriend or boyfriend, but for the rest it is a frantic few weeks. First you ask around about who is already hitched or who is looking. Once you have your targeted match, you inquire to their closest friends if they are interested. In the case of a green light, it is ritual for an after school confrontation or evening phone call. If both partners are happy, a sigh of relief is breathed and on to bigger and better things, like costume. Finding the right dress or tux is very important for the teenager's confidence level. The men have a relatively easy ritual of getting a fitting for their tux. The only decision-making is the right color vest to match their dates" dress.