Popping the question: PROM?

John Kilian finds a creative way to ask Erica Snyder to prom.

By Elise Vincent Senior, Ladue Horton Watkins High School

Promposal (n) – a proposal from one person asking another person to the prom; is the combination of the words “prom” and “proposal.”
As the air grows more humid, the days get longer, and flowers start to bloom, many high-school teenagers begin thinking about prom. With prom comes the worry over dresses, picture plans, AND…promposals. A unique, charming and dazzling way to ask someone to a dance, the promposal has seen many venues. Some come in the form of posters, or serving a tennis ball to an opponent with “PROM?” written on it. Others generate heart attacks, such as fake college rejection letters stressing that the student’s admission has been withdrawn, unless he/she accompanies the asker to prom.
Erica Snyder, a senior at Ladue Horton Watkins High School, surprised her friend John Kilian by asking him to prom right after another school event, “Mr. Ladue.”
“I totally didn’t expect it,” said John, who is a junior at Kirkwood. “Erica just asked me if I’d want to go to Mr. Ladue with her, and then afterwards pulled a shiny sign out of her car asking me to prom. The sign said, ‘Even though we’re gay, can I take you straight to prom?’”
“I’ve never really liked school dances,” Erica said. “But my friend Ines convinced me to go and to have some fun with it. I decided to ask John because I am a lesbian and I didn’t have any girl in mind that I’d want to take. Then, I planned a punny way to ask him… by asking him ‘straight’ to prom.
Erica and John also proved that the promposal does not have to come exclusively from guys.  
“I think the whole guy asking the girl out is overrated… because gender roles are overrated. If you are a girl and want to go to prom with a certain guy…be a strong, independent woman and do it,” said Erica.
Emma Weller, on the other hand, had a pretty solid hunch that her boyfriend Mario Whitley was cooking something up for prom.
“We’ve been dating for seven months, so even though we joked about not being each other’s dates to prom, we both planned on going together,” said Emma, senior at Ladue. “He ended up asking me a couple weeks beforehand. When I walked into first hour, there was a flower on my desk. In my next class, a couple of his friends ran in and handed me two more flowers. Finally, in my last class of the day, Mario came in holding a bouquet of flowers and a poster asking me to prom in Spanish.”
Something important that teenagers ought to know is that it is perfectly acceptable to not have a date to prom. A lot of teens go stag with a group of friends. “Going with a date can be really fun,” Emma said. “But if you don’t know the person well it can be a little awkward. Also, most of my friends didn’t even go with a date. They just went in groups.”
Promposals are a fun way to usher in prom, but remember that dates and promposals are not essential to having a good night.