In Defense of My Girl Sadie Hawkins


Kate Wolffe, Feature Editor

In 1937 Sadie Hawkins was born.

Drawn, really.

Ms. Hawkins, the “homeliest gal in all them hills”, was created by cartoonist Al Capp, as a plot device for his classic hillbilly comic strip, Li’l Abner. As the story goes, Sadie, at the ripe old age of 35, was frantic for a husband and sick of waiting for suitors to come calling. With the help of her father, she organized a run where all the eligible bachelors of her town, Dogpatch, raced with Sadie hot on their heels. Whomever she caught first would be “shackled” into marriage with this surprisingly resourceful and spunky young woman.

What started as a simple joke has become a cultural phenomenon. Each time a leap year rolls around, Sadie Hawkins’ Day does too, and on February 29th, instead of waiting around for their significant others to pop the question, women are “allowed” to ask males for their hand in marriage. It is perhaps most well known by students for its presence as the Sadie Hawkins’ Dance, a classic gender role- reversal, in which it is socially acceptable, even encouraged, for girls to choose and invite a date of their choice. It serves nationwide as the basis of an event that empowers women.

But why should this empowerment take place on only one day out of 1,461? Why only one dance, (or in Miramonte’s case, zero dances) out of all of those that take place over the course of the school year? Why must we wait for Sadie’s day to come around in order to practice her methods? Why, after the tremendous amount of progress made in regards to women’s rights, is it still social taboo for a female to ask a male on a date? After all, we would merely be doing what men have been doing since the beginning of time.

These questions are especially pertinent with the looming presences of both Junior Prom and Senior Ball. It’s exciting stuff: since early January, girls have been choosing their dresses, shoes, and hairstyles and obsessing over their eyebrows, cuticles, and the various ways to hold their strapless dresses up. They go to the farthest of lengths to make sure their night is perfect and then they…wait.

And wait.

And wait.


They wait and hope for someone to ask them, the someone who is arguably the factor that determines whether their night is horrific, or one they will remember for the rest of their lives. It seems that society has become so brainwashed by the belief that a male must invite a female that we girls neglect to take care of this final and crucial step in the Prom/Ball process.

It just doesn’t make sense.

In order to solve my query and get students’ opinions on the topic, I took to the hallways, asking junior boys and girls alike what they would think if a young woman were to ask a young man to the steadily approaching Prom.

The girls’ responses were, for the most part, quite positive, despite the fact that many claimed that they would never be audacious enough to do so themselves. “I would be so proud if a girl were to do that,” said junior Simone Britto, “it would be really awesome. I personally wouldn’t want to have to deal with the stress.”

For other girls, it was a pride issue, some feared they’d be attributed with masculine qualities, or, if rejected, be subject to public humiliation. In every response though, there was one common denominator: girls refrained from asking guys simply because they didn’t want to seem desperate.

And I get that. I do. Putting yourself out there is scary. It’s intimidating, and there’s always the possibility that that one beautiful boy you’ve had an unrequited love for since forever will say no.

But you know what will happen after that? Yep, you guessed it, the crippling bullying you’ll experience will prompt you to fail all of your O.W.L.s, leading you to start hanging out with the Slytherins and getting into some shady potions. There’s no doubt you’ll have a close call with Greyback after being terrified by a boggart in Knockturn Alley, and you’ll most likely find refuge in Borgin and Burke’s only to stumble upon the cursed opal necklace- which will subsequently be your downfall. (This, weirdly, is my worst nightmare)

NOT. If that person says they’d rather not, thanks very much, then you won’t go together. It’s as simple as that. Perhaps you’ll finally realize that they don’t deserve your time, and you’ll be able to move on. And what if they say yes? WHAT IF THEY SAY YES?!?! The possibilities are endless!

And guys certainly seem to be in favor of it. “I would be happy if a girl asked me!” said junior Dominic Paoletti, “it would totally take the pressure off.”

Junior Matt Cohen agreed, adding, “I would feel exceptionally honored.”

So do it, girls. Flout pointless social norms and, if there’s someone you want to go out with, whether it’s to Junior Prom, to Senior Ball, or somewhere down the road when reality catches up to us, put yourself out there, and ask.

Sadie would be proud.