Two weeks ago (ish) a story was everywhere all of a sudden about two girls who gave up their homecoming crown for their friend.
Some ‘mean kids’* apparently told the friend that she’d been nominated when she hadn’t. The pair of girls that the stories are about were nominated, and when they found out … well, “We were like, ‘No matter what, no backing down. If one of us wins, we’re giving Lillian the crown,’” one of them said.
The stories are, exclusively as far as I can tell, along the lines of ‘these are just the best best friends in the world, to sacrifice for that poor unpopular girl like that’.
I call BALONEY and my reasons are three. Like trolls. And wishes.
1. There was no sacrifice. Whatsoever. Let me lay this out for you. No one is as emotionally manipulative and as willing to act fake in the pursuit of possible social capital as a teenage girl. This isn’t some girl on girl hate, this is just the fact that teenagers are sociopaths combined with the fact that our society tells young women that being liked, preferably with votes involved, is the highest of all achievements. These girls went about it in a pleasant way, which is lovely, but they also knew that they were trading a 50% (or lower, it’s not clear how many other young women were nominated) chance at winning for a 100% chance of being remembered as ‘those girls who could have been queen if they weren’t just so sweet to their ugly friend’.
2. This is more dubious, but I have my doubts about this purported ‘she’s our very bestest friend’ thing. Because you know what does NOT, generally, happen to the best friends of women who are nominated for homecoming queen? Other people do not play pranks on them telling them they were nominated. There is a popularity bubble and outside of movies, you can’t be in a bubble where queens call you bestie and ALSO in a bubble where ‘mean kids’ play John Hughes (/Steven King) level pranks on you. I know I’m generalizing, but in what real school would such a prank happen anymore ANYWAY?
3. Let’s say I’m wrong. Let’s say the three of these girls really are best friends. Let’s say the two possible queens neeeever considered how just positively selfless this would make them look. What is the final queen supposed to take away from this? It almost seems meaner to me than the original prank. It’s not just one girl saying to another in private ‘oh honey here’s something you could never get on your own’. It’s two girls, saying to their friend, on a national stage, that she is pitiable. What is she supposed to do with that? I imagine the possible queens thinking that the other girl would pull out her yearbook and tell her children about the two nicest friends she ever had, but that’s not going to happen. This is an embarrassing story. This is ‘people at school tricked me into thinking I was popular and then pulled the rug out, and then two of my friends brought it up again in front of the school and then the world and made it impossible to forget. I didn’t win homecoming queen, I wasn’t nominated for homecoming queen, but here’s a picture of me with the crown!’.