Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Something smells in the bloomin' flower business

Something smells in the beautiful world of floristry...and it ain't roses!

My handsome 16 year old drummer boy son is going to a formal. Not his, that was last year. And I'm pretty sure he'll have another for when he's in Year 12 next year. No, he's been invited to accompany a beautiful sweet young thing to her formal. So, this year I figure we (and by 'we' I actually mean 'I') will learn from the mistakes of last year when shock, horror, we didn't get first gorgeous sweet young thing a corsage.


please save your shocking distaste for me & reserve your judgement at my lack of Formal etiquette until you have to go through it yourself (if you have been through it recently and sailed through with an A plus, well then you may wish to stop reading now).


It has been a couple of years since my own Yr 12 formal - fine, 25 years to be more prescise & technically a 'prom' as I was in America. And who knew that Aussie culture is following America's in more than just fast food, bad tv & the sexualisation of our youth, that it is now common practice to add a corsage to the already lengthy list of Formal night requirements.


I shouldn't blame myself for Drummer Boy & last year's Gorgeous Gal for breaking up suspiciously close after said corsage-less formal...but Mother's guilt is obviously still alive and well 17 years after conception, because as blonde haired Drummer Boy keeps assuring me, he knows everything about anything, could possibly do no wrong - ever - and surely therefore by default I deduct that it must be my fault.


When I don't rifle through the toxic clothing floor-drobe dump that is his room to wash his favourite t-shirt in time for a very important teenage social event that I knew nothing about in some sort of phychic display of brilliance, it too must surely be my fault. As is luring myself into what must be the cardinal sin of parenting by saying something that I perceive to be extraordinarily witty in front of cringing boy and his teenage mates...yeup, my fault.


Today I remembered we need to organize a corsage (once again 'we' meaning 'I' who offered to organise & pay) . Well done me! And a whole 9 days in advance...VERY well done me! I did enlist the precious services of Drum Boy to 'find' a clean shirt, good trousers - you know...without rips, tears & holes would be really nice - in beforementioned clothing mountain so we can make sure he scrubs up clean & decent for the big night. No, DB (drum boy) spraying half a can of Lynx is not a good enough way to make sure you and your clothes smell alright on the night) I mean seriously, didn't your mother teach you hygeine 101? Oh wait, that's me & I'm pretty sure we covered that back in 2007.


To suss the colour of pretty new thing's dress so I could colour coordinate the corsage. Bloomin' brilliant, I am triumphantly improving on last year in leaps and bounds. And seriously helping Formal Boys chances of being appreciated in years to come when photographs are pulled out of albums after inhebriated nights of 'back in the day' reminiscing.


Apparently a white dress with bursts of lots of colour. ANY colour corsage will suffice says sweet Formal partner. Done, white Singapore Lilly it is. Broach or wrist...I'll take an educated guess and say a wrist would be preferred. Cost $30!!! I'm not buying the entire flipping boquet or plant. Just one sweet little flower. Me thinks the florist-gouging industry is branching out and expanding its exploitation of brides-to-be, to include sweet innocent 16 year olds girls with puppy dog eyes whose parents couldn't possibly say "do you really need a $30 corsage honey?"


the world over is "Formal tickets, a new dress, new shoes & of course a new matching bag; hair and makeup, jewellery, accessories, transport and some play money for emergencies - like your father's double bypass heart attack surgery" does make China's one-male-child-only policy seem a lot more sensicle; although we must address the issue of legitimising gay marriage at some stage or I can forsee 'issues' with this policy. Just sayin'. (Please save your complaints about my politally incorrect jokes...I promise you there will be more. I'm trying to be thoughtful & suggesting you way want to start a list and write me in about 50 years when I may not be around to deal with it.)


about a measley $30 corsage this year, but start saving for my almost-15 year-old-Pretty-Little-Daughter's formal next year. Unfortunately she's too pretty to pass off as a boy in a tux, plus there'd be a whole lot of therapy sessions & Childrens services to deal with for marring her rite of passage as a blessed girl in the Western world.


I'm convinced this is all some dramatic and dark payback plan by the mostly women-run florist industry to get back at men for not buying them corsages in highschool. I could be wrong, but I've got my eyes on you flower people.


  1. I hear ya. And why are there soooo many formals these days? With corsages? In my day we just turned up dressed in recycled curtains or nasty taffeta. As long as your hair was high, you were dressed. Bring back the 80's!

  2. I'm with ya, Bloss. Was just doing a bit of inhebriated reminiscing myself (minus the alcohol, think I was high on caffeine & chocolate) and nearly choked on my Cadburys when I saw the fluro purple pouffy-sleeved shiny taffeta number i wore to a wedding in '86; and the house-full of baby-pink lace that was my prom dress with matching dyed shoes. Thank goodness for really high hair though, added that much needed height to my very short frame.

  3. well you could be on to something.....A deep, dark, florist industry conspiracy...hmmm. Yes, I could see that this could be the case!

    I did not get a corsage at my formal. But it was 95 and we were way too cool for corsages in the mid nineties.. tooo busy being filled with teenage angst!

    Gill xo

  4. Oh Gill, that's funny. I'm sure you're still "too school for cool" as Pink says on her new song (see Drummer Boy, I know my pop-culture, kudos to me!"

  5. I am cracking up! I did order the corsage, which cost a whopping $25 (these kids are only 14 and ending the 8th grade for crying out loud) and then while in the marathon photo session, 2 of the precious rose buds fall out! I agree, the whole thing is a conspiracy, I'm not sure if it's by the florists, the dressmakers or just some of the crazy parents out there, but I'm keeping my eye on all of them! ;)


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