Asking a Girl to Be Your Date

Don’t be afraid to be a little timid and show how innocent you truly are. This will put her at ease. Remember, you are a wholesome, all-American guy and she’s the apple-cheeked girl next door. Don’t hesitate to use terms like “golly,” “buster,” and “swell” after she finally says yes.

Picking and Presenting the Right Corsage

This is crucial for many reasons, none of which I can go into. Select a corsage that comes in an oddly anachronistic box. Arrive at your date’s house and present the corsage first. Then greet her mother and father warmly and promise you’ll have their daughter home before midnight. Laugh together about this, even though you have no idea what exactly you’re laughing about, nor why the father’s entire head has turned a very unnatural purple color and is ballooning in size. Don’t spend any time trying to figure out what’s happening, however. After the father excuses himself, your date will descend the staircase very slowly. Pin the corsage on in the same slow motion. Be careful here not to stare too long at the flower once it’s pinned on your date, as you may get a brief glimpse of your own yawning face aged 20 years and wearing brazenly applied clown makeup for a reason that is not yet clear to you. Bid the mother good night. “Gosh,” you might want to say to yourself, “maybe the yellow corsage would have been better.”

Driving to the Dance

Instead of listening to your CD player, tune your radio to a station with reception that fades in and out on an old Dinah Shore number but without any instrumentals, just the haunting voice. Hope it rains while you’re in the car so that the streetlights of your small hometown are blurred and diffused in the windshield. Fix your wipers to move in sync with the hypnotic music that seems to go on and on while the storm rages just outside the warm cocoon of your automobile. Several blocks later, ignore the severed arm lying across the intersection. Yes, it was definitely a severed arm. Ask your date if she’s excited. Reply that you’re excited, too. Hold hands for only the last two minutes of your drive. Once you’ve arrived, open the door for her. Take her hand and enter your high-school gymnasium dazzled. Continue to let the chorus of the Dinah Shore song echo in your head for the rest of the evening, even as others around you dance to Linkin Park.

First Slow Dance

While you and your date sway gently to the music, tell her that you really like her ponytail. Don’t answer when she asks you why you’re speaking backward. This dance just might last forever. Or at least three and half hours.

Your Social-Studies Teacher
in the Bathroom With Bloodied Hands
and Wearing a Platinum-Blond Wig

If this happens, your teacher, Mr. Rohrbauch, will appear oddly at peace. Joke about how this reminds you a little of the Teapot Dome scandal you all discussed yesterday in period 5. He won’t respond, but keep smiling. Then maybe wrestle briefly with Mr. Rohrbauch, getting blood on yourself. This whole thing sounds really freaky and messed up, you say? Sure, I can see that. Hey, these are all just impressions.

Being Named Prom King and Queen

If you are named prom king and queen, which you almost certainly will be, because it’s your destiny, walk confidently to the podium. Lose yourself in the klieg lights. Don’t allow your date to clean up her face after her tears of joy cause her mascara to run. In fact, use a dropper to make sure it streaks all the way down her cheeks. This is now the time to embrace her. Hold back not at all. Tear at her dress. Pet heavily. From the corner of your eye, note Mr. Rohrbauch attacking several students, many of whom are now wearing featureless plaster masks. Continue necking furiously with your date despite the principal’s attempts to stop you. Also, don’t be alarmed when your date, for a second there, turns into another woman you’ve never seen before. This is normal.

Saying Good Night

Once again, don’t feel bad at all about being shy. Back in the safety of your car, hold your date’s hands tenderly one last time. Do not kiss here; this is not the place. Nor should you discuss anything you saw earlier that night. There’s no point in trying to make sense of it. Say you hope you’ll see her again soon. “Does this mean things will never be the same again and that the purity and beauty we once took for granted will be gone forever?” she might ask. This is, again, all open to interpretation.