Dances exaggerate gender differences

Grace McCarthy and Margaux MacColl

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The vibrant flames of candles flicker in a crisp breeze that rushes off the dark ocean. The waves embrace the shore and slink away, almost, but not quite, touching a marking in the sand.

Sprawled across the shore, awaiting a certain girl, reads, “Junior Prom?”

“I remember feeling excited,” Julia Woods ’14 said with a giddy grin, about how she was asked to junior prom.

Zac Polin ’14 recalled how he wrote his prom proposal on the inside of his car window.

As his potential date slid into the car, he rolled up the window slyly.

“Don’t worry,” he put his hands up defensively and added, “she said yes!”

From the asking process to getting ready for the big day, there are clear gender differences when it comes to dances.

From the start, girls seem to care significantly more than boys. As to why, Polin chalks it up to boredom.

“The prom itself isn’t fun,” he said dryly.

Lauren Raiffeisen ’14 gave a girl’s perspective saying, “I definitely think girls get more excited than guys because I know I love to get dressed up for different events.”

Guys don’t seem to be as meticulous in the preparation process. When asked how long it takes to get ready for the dance, Oliver Hickson ’15 said bluntly, “Ten minutes.”

When Olivia Jones ’15, who was sitting beside him, was asked the same question, her eyes diverted to the table and she paused. Quietly, with traces of embarrassment in her voice, she said, “Seven hours.”

This answer evoked a bright laugh from Hickson, who leaned forward and corrected her, “More like twenty four hours!”

A similar response occurred when Polin was asked what he did to get ready.

There was a long silence, and a puzzled look spilled across his face.

“I put on a suit,” Polin said with confusion lining his words, clearly not conceiving what else there could be for a person to do.

Chris Mckinney ’14 said similarly, “I bought my suit the day of the dance and was rushing out the door.”

Jones, being a girl, had a slightly different perspective.

“I woke up at 7 o’clock- I was so anxious- then I got my nails done at 10am and you’re trying to relax, but it’s so stressful,” Jones said. She looked up and chuckled softly, repeating,

“It’s just so stressful.”

This stress begins months before the actual dance.

“We, girls, start worrying about the dances really early – nearly five months beforehand,” Woods said.

Guys don’t think about for it nearly as long, with Polin saying, “We tend to think about it about two months before.”

While all the girls interviewed agreed that most girls loved dressing up for the dance, Lauren Raiffeisen ’14 added lightheartedly, “Guys are usually just excited for the after party.”

Mckinney acknowledges that girls worry more about getting ready for the dances, but he makes sure to add, admitting he is very sentimental, that dances are really all about “spending as much time with your friends as possible.”

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