DID WE REALLY LIVE IN A BETTER TIME? My wife and I were raised in the 1940's and 1950's, graduating from High School in the late 50's. The idea for this post has been rocketing ( OK maybe not rocketing) around in my head for a number of days now. A number of things have been on the news that brings this about. And the subject? Senior Prom. There have been news shows with news anchors asking people to write in, well # in or e mail or something and tell if they attended their senior prom. And a local station has been telling about a group of people asking women to donate their old prom dresses to their group so they can give them to girls who can't afford a dress. And there was a story of two high school couples who went to a restaurant for dinner prior to attending the prom and an older couple picked up the check for the high schoolers, because "watching them brought back good memories". So, I am going to blog a little bit about a prom in a small town high school in the 50's.
The high school we attended had a Junior Senior banquet prior to the prom. I know other schools of that time did this also. The premise was that the Juniors would decorate the Gym, decide on a menu, and arrange for someone to cook the meal. This usually was the high school cooks, but they received some funds for the food and their work to do this. This banquet was usually in the evening before the prom. those invited were all juniors and seniors and their parents, faculty and members of the school board. After the meal was over, the Gym would be cleared of tables, chairs moved to the walls and a live band would provide the music for the prom. The prom was a dress up affair, but the whole community was invited to attend and there was a charge for admission. this money helped defray the costs of the banquet and the decorations for the prom. So, yes, the Senior Prom was a family affair. While the Seniors were the High Light of the evening, and the banquet was hosted and paid for by the Junior class, the whole High School community turned out for the dance part. The largest cost was probably the prom dress for the girls. Boys a suit, ( A tux was almost unheard of in our part of the world in the 50's) and the price of a corsage for a date, if they had one. Date or not, we all attended.
Now fast forward to today. Senior's go to the prom. Who else attends? Cost is a Tux for the boys and a dress for the girls, often a hired Limo to take them as well as a meal in a restaurant with a date, or maybe a group of couples, if they decide to go that route. Families are not really involved, except perhaps in the planning and money stage.
Does any one know if there is such a thing going on in the manner I described my wife and I were involved in as high shcoolers? Just wondering.
I just can't help but think that something has been lost by eliminating the family from the activities and for the juniors to have the opportunity to learn how to plan and host a banquet. But then, maybe with a class of hundreds, the logistics would be horrific. Who knows. Still, I feel that something has been lost. AND THAT IS THE VIEW FROM THE DITCH BANK