Homecoming mums are out of control, so here’s an idea

Warning: disturbing images. There are two young girls trapped beneath this gargantuan ribbon-and-bling waterfall. One reported headache and neck pain at the end of the school day, but both sustained only minor discomfort.

Maybe the homecoming mum started out as a sweet token from a boy to a girl, which honored the wearer’s unique personality and interests, but as tends to happen in this competitive and size-obsessed culture, things got out of hand…

I will get flack for this—I realize it is a southern tradition—but I simply do not understand the homecoming mum thing. When did walking around with a parade float attached to your chest become cool? This is just my opinion, but wearing this $50-$500, double-digit pounded flowery, glittery and sometimes noisy monstrosity ranks right up there with gurning, camel wrestling and other odd customs of the world. I appreciate that other people value the ritual, but it still makes my brain hurt.

(On the other hand, maybe it’s a joke, a bit, and if that’s the case — haha. Hilarious and touché.)

In one Texas high school, reason seems to have prevailed. According to a spot on NBC 5 the other night, two Southlake Carroll kids decided to take the money they might have spent on the mum and donated it to Cook Children’s Medical Center, which makes good sense to me.

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They probably aren’t the first to do something like this, but they are the first I have heard of.

If you have a photo of an outrageous mum, please send it to me at chughes@advocatemag.com.

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  • The Style Sisters

    Hi..we thought the same thing about mums when we first moved to Texas that they are crazy expensive and just weird but then my daughter dived into the whole tradition and made some fun memories…I like the idea of donating the money to a favorite charity but it was fun for her to make a mum. This photo is from my blog http://thestylesisters.blogspot.com/2008/10/texas-homecoming-mums.html if you could link it back to me I would appreciate it.

  • chris

    Mums are completely absurd.  Please post pics of these ridiculous things so hilarity can ensue

  • treasuretteofyore

    And shouldn’t Southern in the article and in the comments be capitalized?

  • I am getting some funny pics. In the next few days I will post them :)!!

  • BarefeetontheDashboard

    Mums are not a southern thing, they are a Texas thing.  I’m from Arkansas, and lived in North Carolina, and they don’t exist in either place.  I just don’t get them.  I work with teenagers and try to get them to explain the whole mum thing to me, but I still don’t understand.  Traditions don’t have to be logical or fashionable, I guess.  

  • Janareneegirl58

    I’m old…we had wrist corsages..yeah like that worked….as you ate they slopped thru the plate…ha

  • Bregan0419

    Luckily not all mums are this large or heavy.  Pinning them to your bra strap at the shoulder is the key, but some necessitate a neck strap as well.  But the secret is that the pin should go on the top of your shoulder, not at the top of the bra cup. For some, making a mum is a mother daughter aunt niece tradition.  You can’t argue with an activity that teenager WANTS to do with their family.  For others it’s just showing off that my date spent more on me that yours spent on you.

  • Mercedes

    You mean “flak” not “flack” … a flack is slang for a public relations person; flak means anti-aircraft fire, but also has evolved into meaning any kind of criticism and hostile reaction.

  • Anonymous

    My senior year I had to wear a sports bra under my dress just so I could have an industrial-strength anchor on which to secure the thing with a thousand extra large safety pins. But now they’re having to wear them around their NECKS? Madness.