Monday, May 11, 2009

Spin Cycle: A Tale of Two Proms

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness…

Me? I never went to prom. I could say it’s because I was not a prom kind of girl back in the mid ‘70’s, and I’d be mostly correct. I was a beach girl, a horse girl, an organic too-late-to-be-a-hippy-but-almost-a-hippy girl. But the truth of the matter is, no one asked me, no one back then at my high school went stag or in groups of same kind gender, and I was not bold enough to ask a boy.

But my kids have both been to prom, so now I have a terror or two to tell. Both stories involve the shopping for prom wear.

Let’s start with son.

I don’t have any brothers, we’ve already established that I never went to prom, and the only experience I had with tuxedos was when my husband, his best man, and my father showed up wearing them at our wedding. However, I haven’t a clue how or where this came about.

So when Son told me he was asked to prom and he needed my help getting something to wear, I went to the experts.

Hubs went to proms. He said we had to go to a tuxedo shop. That Son should find out what color the girl’s dress was and to get a tux with the tie and/or vest complimenting her gown. If you are wondering why hubs did not take care of getting Son's prom tuxedo himself, you are probably a new reader. Welcome.

Anyways, hubs went to prom like, uhhh, maybe a hundred years ago. So even if that tux shop was still around, he did not remember where it was. He thought it was in Sears…. Seriously.

I called my friend the wedding planner. She knew where all the tux shops were and all the insider’s information on each of them. I made my list of each shop’s specialty.

Then I went to Son.

Hey kid, what kind of tux did you have in mind?

I think a zebra stripe suit would be awesome.


I am serious.

This exact same conversation took place on three separate occasions, so I asked Daughter to call the girl that Son was taking and to ask the girl what she would like Son to show up in.

Prom Date said a tux or suit would be nice. Her dress is red and she seemed really relieved when I asked her. I think she knows about his zebra suit idea.

When it came to the day to go and pick out a tux, Son was out with his friends, so we made plans to meet up in town.

When Son pulled the truck up next to my car, there were three of him. Meaning his two friends had the same longish hair, skater/surfer look as Son. They walked like Son. They even talked like Son. They were the Patty Duke triplets of the skater scene.

A visual aid for those too young for the Patty Duke reference. Go ahead. We'll wait.

The boys wanted to come tux shopping with us. They thought it would be fun. You just never know what is going to get their interest these days. Next thing you know, they will ask to grocery shopping with me.

When we got there, the man working the counter appealed to the boys. His head was shaved, he had a goatee, and intricate ink covered most of his forearms. I think they figured him a sympathetic audience to their antics. Their questions emerged in Beavis and Butthead fashion.

Do you have a tuxedo in zebra print?

Uh, no.

How about a cheetah print?


You know what would be really cool? A tux made out of ‘70’s shag carpet material.

Ho, yeah baby. Like in orange.

Do you have that?

The tuxedo man is staring at them. Then he says,

I can get you a plaid tux in lime green.

The boys chuckle.

That might be kind of cool. Let’s see that one.

Meanwhile, Daughter and I are just standing there, enjoying the side show. However, I feel it is time for me to step up to the plate.

Excuse me,

I say to tuxedo man,

but I’m paying for this. I have no intention of sending him off to pick up that poor girl in a lime green plaid tuxedo.

The Boy didn’t put up a fight as Daughter and I selected a glorious black tux with a deep red tie and vest. His friends walked down to the nearest fast food outlet to rev up their batteries. They'd had their fun.

The only other highlight was the fitting, where the 6’1” 138 pound teen looked absolutely stunning in pants that came half way up his ankles and a jacket that stopped mid forearms. He could have been a Dickens’s urchin and I could kick myself for not having my camera.

If you want to see how it all turned out, it is here in this post.

The boys did say that next year they are ALL going to go and they will plan ahead so they all find zebra, cheetah, or shag carpet tuxedos. I’ll make sure my camera is ready.

Part Two, Daughter’s prom shopping tomorrow.

For more spins, head on over to our host, Sprite's Keeper.


Unknown said...

we don't have PROM's here so i am relying on your interpretation to give a the prom experience!!

Kristan said...

Oh thank GOD you were there to save your son's date!

My Prom was wonderful and went off without a hitch... because all the hitches came before! But that's a long story, and one I've never been quite ready to tell.

Sprite's Keeper said...

The Patty Duke show! I used to love watching that show!
I think a lime green plaid tux would have complimented the red dress, but then again, I'm a sucker for contradiction. Can't wait for Part 2! You're linked!

Ash said...

My sons' future prom dates better hope I'm at least half as on the ball as you.


How does this generation even know what the heck shag carpeting is?

Good call Mama, good call.

Ash said...

P.S. excellent Bevis and Butthead reference.

I'm putting in a formal request for Ren and Stimpy next.

david mcmahon said...

As a father of three, I hear you loud and clear!

Fragrant Liar said...

I never went to prom either. Thought I was too cool for school type thing. Plus, no one asked me anyway. I don't know which explanation came first, the too-cool or no date, but I now wonder what I missed out on. Probably nothing, but you know, it's always greener on the other side. Glad you were the voice of reason for your son and his date. :) Take pictures!

Twenty Four At Heart said...

My son picked out his tux last week and ordered the corsage today. His prom is next weekend. Man, oh man, the dances are expensive! Not as bad as getting my daughter a dress ... but!

Casey said...

I think you just found a market for making money... zebra print tuxes. Bingo!

shaunna said...

i'm still laughing @ shag carpet tux. awesome.

Smart Mouth Broad said...

Great spin, Pseudo. I can't wait to see next year's prom pics and to read Daughter's prom shopping tales.

I went to prom but not my Senior year. The JackAss (aka MHS) wouldn't take me because he had already graduated and didn't want to go back. Too cool you know. JackAss!

Smart Mouth Broad said...

BTW, I don't know how I missed the prom post. He really looked dashing despite his smart mouth. But then you know me, I'm a sucker for a smart mouth.

Just be glad he saves it for home and behaves himself out in the world. That's the way I always looked at it.

Christy said...

ok, the zebra suit made me totally laugh out loud. Why is it that boys feel the need to wear the craziest stuff to prom?

Girl Tornado said...

You know, I never went to a prom either... long story, another time.

So I didn't have a ton of clues when my son went to prom either. I think my ex-husband must have helped him with his tux, although I DO remember helping him (translation = paying for) get the corsage and loaning him my Chrysler Sebring convertible under threat of license revocation if anything happened to it!

mo.stoneskin said...

Zebra would have been funny. Or lime green even!

cheatymoon said...

I feel like I know your son... lol.
This is what I have to look forward to. In a few short years...

Aliceson said...

Where do these boys get the idea that prom = wear the most outrageous tux ever? I never went to prom but my friend went and her date wore an absolutely ugly red tuxedo that matched her dress. It looked like they were wearing the same thing except he had pants. Lime green plaid would have been right up his alley!

MsTypo said...

I went to my hs formal stag with a bunch of my friends. It was a great night if not typical of most people's proms. :)

As for the zebra print tux... it could have cool! At least no one there would have been wearing the same thing. LOL

Unknown said...

I remember reading the post and seeing him in his tux; he reminded me so much of my son because of his tall, thin physique and hair flopping over his forehead!

Great spin and I, too, am so glad you saved his prom date from extreme embarrassment!

Jan said...

Oldest Son has always been very anti-establishment and non-conformist, so I never got the joy of tux shopping with him for a prom. Perhaps I'll get to enjoy that with The Young One, since he starts high school next fall.

Darling Daughter, though? Been there, done that, am awaiting tomorrow's post with baited breath.

Amy said...

How much fun that must have been.

flurrious said...

My senior prom was in 1981. As I recall, my date wore a rented light gray/almost white tux with brown shoes that he borrowed from his dad. Sadly, that was reasonably stylish for the time.

Joy said...

Too funny, reading this makes me cringe at the thought of having a teen son and having to go thru this with him!

♥ Braja said...

You're still my prom queen :)

Jack said...

I enjoy watching the prom kids and all the odd looking tuxedos some of the boys choose and some the girls gowns are a little out there too!

I have a two prom gowns taking up space in my closet. Every time I open go to find something I see them hanging there and think of how much money was spent on these dresses that were only worn once.

Here is one of them.

Hope you two find the perfect dress that doesn't break the bank ;)

msprimadonna67 said...

I chaperoned a prom once where one of the boys showed up in a white tux with an over-sized purple-collared shirt, fuzzy top hat, and bejewelled walking stick. It's pretty amazing the lengths they'll go to sometimes to 'make a statement.'

Robbie S. Redmon, LPC said...

Hi, just stopping by from SITS! Great post.

Mocha Dad said...

I don't have to worry about proms for a while. Thank God!

midlife slices said...

Animal prints were big at the prom this year in our small town but the biggest thing was how everyone arrived. They came in boats, vintage cars, Hurst, tractors, 4-wheelers, motorcycle (poor girl), and carriage. I'm getting nervous wondering what the over-the-top rage will be when ST can attend in about 2 years. yikes, that's a scary thought.

Mimi said...

Sound like a lot of fun, but I'm glad reason won out!

Thanks for stopping by my blog & helping to make my SITS day special!

Hit 40 said...

Wow tux shopping!!! I can not even go there. They grow up so fast.

I imagine his date is very thankful that you did not allow the lime tux!! Good work.

Mrsbear said...

Aw, he looked so handsome in his smart tux. Really, date girl owes you a lot. What is it with teenage boys needing to shock and/or offend? A shag tux?! Really? Who are you hurting with that one? Great job keeping him on the straight and narrow of prom garb. ;)

Unknown said...

Pseudo, congrats on being named POTD Contender by David at Authorblog! Way cool!

LadyFi said...

Well written post! Would have been fun to see a lime tux - as long as I wasn't paying...

He looks handsome and I bet his date was glad that he didn't turn up looking like a zebra! ;-)

Sniffles and Smiles said...

Absolutely hilarious!!! What characters they are! You have captured the teenage male animal so perfectly here...LOL...Zebra, indeed! This is a perfect post! Congrats on POTD! ~Janine

NG said...

what are moms for :):)
beautifully described...

Merisi said...

Wonderful read, imagining all these scenes, hilarious!

Congratulations on David's POTD Award!