Those of us who left high school with the oft-chanted anthem
“college will be betterrr” may have finally recovered from the starting-over
stumble; we at last are who we want to be. Older. Wiser. More awesome (legally able to purchase alcohol).

It may sting that much more, then, when you realize what
many pioneering older siblings do around the end of May: your younger brother
or sister is cooler than you, and the proof is in the prom pictures.

Scientific prom behavior analyst Gregor Stark, previously
one of the stunned older siblings himself, claims there are valid reasons for
the phenomenon.

“The younger brother or sister usually acts like they have
less to prove. Whereas the elder is more likely to reject the idea of a prom
altogether, the younger’s adorableness has translated to a confident
attractiveness over the years. Especially,” he emphasizes, “when the drag of an older sibling moves out.”

Not that this necessarily translates to the younger being happier
or smarter ““ it simply means their better fitting-in-to-society skills at that
particular age have landed them a fun, attractive date and group with an awesome
limo to cart them around in.

Stark illustrates with mock-ups of what he says are a
typical oldest-child and younger-child prom pictures:

Prom Night Four Years Ago


 

1 – Expression: Either disappointment in self
or drank too much of Kevin’s mom’s bag of Franzia

2 – How does anyone like this, really

3 - Female friend who was here turning down advances
was “tired,” got a ride home with Kevin.

4 – Lot of memories in this Denny’s parking lot.

Prom Night Four Days Ago


1 – Expression: The happiness of two giddy young
people with their lives ahead of them

2 - He and his date enjoy touching each other unironically

3 – The hell, who do they know that has a horse farm and let them take pictures there?!

4 – A horse farm is called a ranch. He would know that.

5 - “Candid,” adorable cheek-kiss. Oh, god.

6 – Made out with her older sister back when, but she
refused to let you tell any of your friends

7 – Hand-me-down suit looks wayy better on him. You really
should have stuck with swimming.
Dammit.

Stark attests this is all merely an observation, meant to assure older siblings they aren’t alone in this prom-season realization. “Take comfort in the fact that this doesn’t say anything about you now – just you back then. And maybe one day, they’ll show you the horse farm.” Maybe.

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