The Herculean Challenge: Elliot Cheung Examines Promposals

After prom invitations were released, March 21, students have become both stressed and excited by upcoming prom proposals.

After prom invitations were released, March 21, students have become both stressed and excited by upcoming prom proposals. (Amy Kang)

The “promposal.” A test that (almost) every high school male must face, requiring great creativity, meticulous planning and impeccable execution to earn the respect of his female peers and win himself a prom date.

There are those who will shrink away from the challenge, simply asking their prospective prom date in the halls or, worse yet, using a text message to avoid the discomfiture of a face to face encounter. These are the men who will be forgotten, never being marked down in history for generations to come or, at least, never making the top 10 promposals article in The Review.

I know it’s the 21st century, and we live in an equal opportunity society – girls can have their promposals too, but for the sake of this article, I’m assuming the guy will be the one asking because it’s generally tradition. Anyways, continuing:

I, for one, am not one to hide from the challenge; I, along with many of my peers I’m sure, will try to create a nice promposal to be remembered. But making a good one is hard. There are a multitude of factors that go into a good promposal, each with their own complexities and concerns.

For starters, there’s deciding who to ask to prom. There are over 200 girls at our school, each lovely in their own ways, and then there are girls from other schools to consider. Of course, no one is close with all of them, but still, choosing the right prom date is hard. The romantic connotation that asking someone to prom entails can make it a bit awkward at times, and, if you’re as socially awkward as I am, it’s even worse. Should you ask a girl just as a friend? What if she gets the wrong idea? Should you ask your long time crush? But then maybe she’ll know you like her, and you’re not ready for that yet. Should you ask your friend’s crush? No, no you should not.

After all that, you have to come up with how you’re going to ask her. This can be tough. Most promposals want to look “cute,” but not too romantic. Memorable, but not too grand. Sweet, but not stalker-esque. There are always the classic, cliché ways to ask a girl to prom that people use every year, but to really make a memorable promposal, one has to be original, which just gets harder and harder to pull off each year as good ideas are used up. A guy really needs a spark of genius to make a great promposal.

Then you actually have to go ahead and do it. That too can be hard. Some ideas are just impractical and impossible to pull off well, and then it’s back to square one (well, maybe square two according to this article, since you’ve already chosen your prom date). And if you made an idea that’s actually feasible, then the nervousness can come in. Second thoughts race through your mind: Did I make the right choice? Maybe there is a better way to do this. Maybe I should back out and plan again… Oh God, what if she says no? Executing a plan can be as difficult as coming up with it.

All that being said, good luck to all the junior and senior guys in their promposals. After a lot of time spent thinking about it and stressing myself out, I finally came up with my own idea for my promposal; it’s not perfect, but I think it will do:

Lydia Liu, will you go to prom with me?

Elliot Cheung
Staff Writer


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