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A Mankler's Guide to Prom: Be the Ball

A Mankler's Guide to Prom: Be the Ball

It’s (almost) here people, it's finally (almost) here! You’ve spent months preparing for your big night and now the time has finally come for you to strut your promliness stuff to the world. But before flinging yourself headfirst into your limousine and embarking on your prom night, there is still a little manklery preparation that needs done. The seas of prom night are treacherous ones, and woe to the man who tries to brave them without the proper mental training ("Be the ball").

Before You Start Prommin'

Before you even think about going to pick up your date, there are a couple important things that need to consider.

DO wear clothes. I repeat: that is a "go" on the clothes. My friends, the body is a beautiful thing, but your prom night is neither the time nor place to show off that beauty. Boxer shorts do not equal pants. For the sake of all things good and innocent in this world, please put a few layers of fabric between you and the party.

NOTE: Failure to follow this step will likely end one of three ways—none are good:

  1. Your date will scream in horror, run inside, pack her bags, leave town and spend the rest of her days in a nunnery attempting to forget the horrible things she saw on the worst night of her life.
  2. Your date will scream in horror, run inside, lock the door and call the police. You will be arrested for indecent exposure and spend the rest of your natural life in an orange jumpsuit cleaning up trash along the interstate.
  3. Your date's mother will scream in horror upon opening the door. Fin prom.

DO NOT overdress. Now don’t get me wrong, there’s nothing wrong with trying to look nice for prom. By all means, dress yourself up! Wear a suit, wear a tie, heck, even slap on a pair of suspenders if you think the world can handle the awesomeness! You want to look classy, but you don't want to look like you just won the Crusades. So, if you’re considering dusting off the cape, mace, and royal garb for your prom night, think again.

DO find out what color dress/tux/onesie your date is wearing so you can get a boutonniere and corsage to match (THIS WILL COME IN LATERRRR).

DO give your skeleton a polish ("brush your teeth"). This is the one night it's okay to have teeth that glow as bright as John Boehner's/Joe Biden's. Optional extras: Getting a Boehner/Biden fake tan (only if she likes orange), gelling hair.

DO wear deodorant. Once you hit the dance floor, things can get pretty hot, especially under the bleachers (in your armpits). That's why it's incredibly important to slap on a little B.O. avoidant that will keep you smelling fresh the whole night through. If you want to go the extra mile, whack on some aftershave! (Ladeez, put your suggestions for the best man-smell in the comments)

The mighty Washingtons hidden within your leather pouch you call a wallet will play an important role in the evenings events. So DO NOT neglect to bring them along with you. (Don't worry, you can go Dutch; the important thing is having cashola for that all-important pitstop at Dunkin Donuts later on that night.)

Now that we've got that handled, it's time to get to the really juicy stuff!

Picking Up Your Date

DO pick up your date in style. There’s nothing wrong with picking up your date in your mom’s '67-vintage ozone-destroying clunk-mobile. Nothing wrong with it at all! I mean, except for the fact that you’re single-handedly responsible for the melting of thousands of little penguin's homes in Antarctica. If you can live with the sorrows of little penguins weighing on your conscience, then by all means go with the minivan. But, if you have climate change nightmares (part-dog, part-trash monsters etc.), then consider other transportation options.

By Land:

1. Horse and buggy. Sure, this vehicle may be a little old-fashioned, but you know what they say, "horses were the original horsepower." Just imagine the look on your date’s face when you drift into her driveway holding the reins of a stallion and its buggy! Drink it in my friends, because that’s what true love looks like.

2. A two-wheeled unicycle, or just a regular bike to you normals. This option will definitely require a little physical labor on your part, but this doesn’t necessarily have to be a bad thing. For starters, you’ll have the opportunity show your date the amazing power and brute strength that is concealed within your thigh muscles. Secondly, she'll get the incredible chance to experience your mad BMX skills first-hand.

NOTE: DO make sure you have mad BMX skills before attempting to show them off. Tail-whips are cool, until you end up in a coma for three weeks.

3. Shared limo. This is probably the best option because it a) is cheap, b) is cheesy and funny (what kind of real people use these?!), c) sometimes comes with really funny lighting apparatus (definitely get the disco limo if you can!), and d) allows you to pre-party with a bunch of friends. If you share with three other couples, the pressure is off you and your date to make casual conversation while sitting in a car the length of a shuffleboard field. ("Can you change the radio station?" "Sure, back in five.")

4. Having your mom/dad/older brother or sister or uncle or bee-keeper neighbor drive you in their sweet vintage Triumph convertible. You don't have to worry about parking, you get to use a cool car without paying to rent it, and SHE* WILL NEVER KNOW YOU CANNOT DRIVE STICK!

Taking to the Skies

1. Employ the help of an oversized bald eagle. My friends, you should know that there are few things more glorious in this world than swooping down from the clouds and grabbing your date in the talons of an oversized bald eagle. In fact, we would make the argument that there is nothing more glorious.

Tip: Set aside a few months/years to find and befriend an oversized bald eagle.

2. Ask President Obama if he wouldn’t mind lending you Air Force One for the night.  Tell him you'll bring it back with a full tank and he should have no problem handing over the keys.

3. Get a helicopter. We have known precisely one person rich enough to do this. The nice thing about blowing your date's mind during transportation is that you can relax for the rest of the night. EXPECTATIONS EXCEEDED.

4. Hot air balloon. Also a legit option if you have wads of money, but difficult to pilot to the exact right spot.

Give Your Date Some of Those Lovin’ Words

After you've pulled up to your date's house in a flurry of glory, she's sure to be near the edge of swooning. Bear in mind that while you a) pulled on some trousers, and b) walked through a mist-cloud of Brut (GROOMING COMPLETE), she probably a) had her hair done, b) had to fix a broken zipper, c) put a ton of effort into makeup, d) was practicing the shoes, and e) had to pose for a million photos for her parents who were freaking out over how beautiful their "baby daughter" looked. She has put in more work than you at this point, so it's time to pull out a few choice words that will send her right over the edge and tumbling into your loving arms.

In the midst of your date’s beauty, it can be easy to forget the wonderful, Shakespearean-like lines you had stored in your head. That’s why we’ve listed a few phrases to stick to, and avoid, when attempting to give the big compliment to your date.


“Nice face paint, fellow prom attendee.” Too blunt.


“The makeup you’re wearing on your face conforms perfectly to your every wrinkle and successfully shields your blemishes.” Too insult-masked-in-a-compliment-ty.

*Whispers in ear* “Oh baby, none of the pictures on my nightstand even begin to compare to your beauty tonight” Too creepy.

“I can’t be sure, but I think you took on the shape of a unicorn for a couple of seconds when you came down those stairs.” Ummm… what?

“Hello biped of the opposite sex, the minerals on your face and the woven cloth covering your body bring positive connotations to my soul. Alas, I am at a loss for words and I believe all I can say is wow squared.”  Too nerdy.


“Hey, you look super beautiful! Tonight is going to be fun!” Just about right.

Give Your Date the Goods

Flowers people, give the girl her flowers. The corsage is a critical part of every prom night, for it symbolizes the blossoming love between you and your date. For bonus points, get her a bunch of flowers to put in her bedroom and enjoy long after the Most Amazing Night of Her/Your Night.

DO NOT, in an attempt to save a couple bucks, give your date a bushel of fake flowers. The corsage should not smell like brooms.

DO NOT rush and accidentally smack your date in the throat while trying to put the corsage on her wrist. We understand that the little bracelet things can be hard to manipulate, and the longer you’re there trying to put the flowers on the more awkward it gets. But its far better to take a little extra time getting the bracelet situated than spending the rest of the night in the ER due to collapsing your date’s trachea.

DO NOT sneeze on your date’s face while trying to slip on the corsage. Nobody wants your spit hitting them at 100 mph, not even your prom date.

DO pretend you’ve been stabbed by your date when she’s pinning on your corsage. It may be the oldest trick in the book, but it just gets funnier and funnier every time.

With that, you've successfully completed your first hour of prom, but you better hold on, because it's next when things start getting pretty interesting.

*Que cliffhanger music*

*All advice rendered above applies to both male and female dates and is framed from the perspective of the askee!

Any crucial pieces of pre-prom prep we missed?! Any suggestions for the most manly and becoming aftershave smells?

Topics: Life, Advice, Guide to Prom
Tags: prom, dating, preparation, transportation, dos and don'ts, corsages, planning, a manklers guide to prom, pre-prom, logistics, best prom ever, mental preparation, baseball metaphors apply to everything

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