Eight Tips to Prom Like A Sir

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Elizabeth Tibbe, Co-editor in chief

Corsages and tuxedos and boutineers, oh my! With what feels like a hundred little rules and social norms that need to be followed, it can be easy for an average teenage boy to feel overwhelmed. But have no fear, Arts Editor Elizabeth Tibbe has you covered. Here are her top eight tips to prom like a sir.

Ask her well

 There’s no rule that says you need to ask a girl to prom in some big extravagant way, yes some guys will, and yes most girls will love it, but it doesn’t need to be a broadway production. We are all going to hear the guy who gets the hookup to ask his girlfriend over the announcements or on a giant banner in the cafeteria and more power to them. If you’ve got a case of stage fright or just want something less public, get her flowers and write  “prom?” on the tag, write it on a box of her favorite candy, get her coffee and write it on the cup or make her a puzzle with a yes and no check box. As long as it shows that you put thought, time or research into the proposal, she will love it. Just please, for all that is sacred, please make sure that you don’t ask her over text. The internet is an amazing thing, check out pinterest.com or even twitter and search prom proposals if you really want something good. Make sure you ask her soon though before someone else sweeps her off her feet.

Make a plan

Men, boys, whatever developmental stage you’re in, don’t make her decide everything. I don’t care if you don’t like to make decisions, take the reigns for once and come up with a plan. It helps if you know your girl, does she like big parties or small get togethers? Full dinner or fun fro yo date? A typical prom date is not that hard. First you pick her up, the right way of course and if you don’t know how to do so, wait until step number five. Next comes group pictures, downtown is perfect so no parents are troubled with hosting a bunch of teens, or a friends house if you want, just make sure you actually have a solid group and don’t leave it to her to pick the group. This is the tricky part, while she shouldn’t have to decide make sure that she won’t be completely uncomfortable with the group, don’t just leave her to fend for herself. Stay with her, hold her hand, do whatever you want but protect your pretty girl from any of your sour single friends. After pictures you usually go out to eat, traditionally with the same group, make sure that if you are going somewhere busy, call and reserve ahead of time. You could also just have a fun and laid back snack at Wild Blue or Electric Cadillac which won’t break the bank and if you want, it could just be the two of you. Then comes the whole prom thing, dancing, music, yada yada, and finally comes after prom. After prom doesn’t require a plan really just decide beforehand if you are going to go downtown or a party for it so everyone can have a change of clothes. Don’t forget to drop her off quietly as to not disrupt her parents, walk her to the door and kiss her goodbye.

Match her

For a girl, the dress will compliment her eyes, look good with her hair and work great with her shoes. As for the guy, you get to match her. Forget about your eyes and hair, as long as you have the same color on you as her dress, you’re golden…or blue, or red. Make sure that you get to see her dress when she gets it (don’t forget to tell her how beautiful she’ll look in it) or if she is keeping it under wraps, ask her what color you should get. Whether it be your tie, shirt, vest, pocket square or maybe you’ll throw-back and strap on a bowtie, make sure you get confirmation that it will work. If you’re embarrassed to go to your date about the color, ask her best friend, they will either know or figure it out for you, then check with them to make sure it matches and surprise her with a perfectly matched accessory.

Know your floral

The corsage is tradition and parents are almost guaranteed to snap a candid shot of you putting it on so make sure that it is worthy of the kodak moment. For a solid local choice, try Grand Haven Garden House or Spring Lake Floral. If you really want to impress your date, don’t just pick out a pre made one from the case, opt for a more original, custom corsage. She may not know the difference but she will notice the effort. Try something other than the silver elastic as a band, pick out one that can last more than just through the night, a more bracelet-like band. Next step is the flowers, which should either match or compliment the dress, you can go simple with a few medium sized flowers or more intricate with a medium bundle of smaller ones, just make sure they don’t overtake her wrist. Lastly the ribbon or wire to bind it all, a simple, delicate one will do. If you have no idea what you just read, just bring your mom or show the florist the dress color.

Pick her up

Picking her up, it can be a necessary evil, you just need to make sure you do it right. Since prom is juniors and seniors you should have your liscense. If not you have til May to get it because prom with you mommy or even a friend as a driver will for sure put a damper on the night, so get on it. Before you head over, groom both yourself and your car. Make sure your hair is combed and beard clean shaven. As for your car, clear out the petrified McDonalds breakfast bags, spray some febreze on that shit and take a stroll through the car wash to get rid of that Michigan salt since there is no end to winter in sight.  Make sure your music is turned down when you pull in and don’t freak out when you get to the door. First thing to do when the gate opens, shake her parents hands! Good lord just shake their hand, instant good impression. A firm two shakes with eye contact and they’ll be pulling you through the door. The only hurdle left before you can go on your merry way is the pictures. They’re simple, slide on the corsage, avoid the boutonniere pin stab, stand up straight, show your pearly whites and keep your hands where daddy can see them. This may be different if you’re going somewhere else but  sure you can figure it out. If you can walk out the door without a shotgun shell in your back, you’ve done well son.

Hold the door

You’re a big strong man, I’m sure holding the door won’t kill you. It’s a simple gesture that’s as old as time and will make your date, and her parents, take note. It’s not just the house door or the door into prom, get out of the car and open her door, close it behind her, all that jazz. Brownie points if you hold it not only for her, but others coming through. She will swoon at your gentleman behavior, just make sure when you walk in after her, hold her hand or the classic “thread the needle” with her hand through your arm.

Clean up well

If you don’t know, a comb is this plastic bar thing with teeth used to make your hair look good and soap is a slippery bar that gets the dirt off and makes you smell good. Neither are hard to use or hard to obtain and they can make a big difference. Facial hair should also be properly treated, shave it, trim it, whatever your date likes, just take care of it so you don’t look like a bum. Unlike everyday at school you can’t just pick out the first shirt and pants in your clean laundry pile, for prom you should make sure your suit is crisp and ironed, fits correctly, and that whatever accessories you decide on matches the dress. Moms, sisters, girl-friends or your date are perfect to go to for approval or advice.

Be sober

Nothing will put a damper on the night more than a car crash. There will be breathalyzers  at the dance, so make sure both you and your friends pass. Not only would drinking get you kicked out of prom but there are too many risks, in 2012 alone there were 936 fatal crashes in Michigan involving drunk drivers. If not for yourself, stay sober from both drugs and alcohol for your date and everybody else, 48 percent of people who die in car crashes are passengers according to the National Council of Alcoholism and Drug Abuse. You don’t need alcohol to have fun and remember, hugs not drugs.