Notes from the dorm

PUBLISHED : Tuesday, 25 May, 2010, 12:00am
UPDATED : Tuesday, 25 May, 2010, 12:00am

Dress, check. Shoes, check. Date, that's another story. What am I talking about? Prom - the night of tuxedos, evening gowns and a celebration dinner with dancing.

More specifically I'm referring to proma. Definition: the drama that comes with planning for prom night. It's a senior's worst nightmare. There's so much planning for one night that you feel like an events secretary.

Any girl will agree that you need an eight-day week to keep up a demanding schedule of schoolwork while organising for what should be 'the best night of the year'. One slip-up and a girl's expectations for the night are ruined.

Step one: finding a date. In an all-girls school, finding a boy to take to prom is the greatest challenge. There are so few guys that most girls are familiar with, so finding a date turns into a bidding war between the girls.

'Well, I just wanted to call you to see if you were planning on taking Jake,' says one girl on the phone with a friend. 'I mean, I know you guys are close but so are we.'

Girls frantically make calls to boys that their friends can be set up with - it's the social networking Olympics, the more people you know the better.

Step two: booking the limo. Ah yes, there's nothing like rolling up to your prom in a posh, white oversized vehicle packed with excited teenagers. It's tacky and extravagant - prom is the perfect excuse to go overboard.

But collecting more than US$1,000 from 24 people is like getting into a tangled web - you never get anywhere.

Final Step: beautification. At BSS, girls take a day off school for what will be their 'red carpet' appearance. Dresses are picked up after alterations and girls scurry along from one appointment to another. It's a tough schedule: manicure at 10am, hair at 2pm, make-up at 3pm - the list goes on.

In the end though, everything comes to being in the moment at the prom and embracing it for what it is. Sure, there'll always be unexpected drama once you get to prom but, when you step into that oversized vehicle with your date, every single molecule of organisational stress disappears.

The checklist of things to do is crumpled up as girls turn from prom secretaries into prom princesses.