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.

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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  • kt

    If more teenagers were expected to earn their own money for extras such as mums, things wouldn’t get so out of hand.  Unfortunately, it’s all to common for parents to dish out the money for whatever extravagent expenditures their children want – so their kids won’t be left out.  Sure think we deprive our kids of a real learning opportunity when we don’t expect them to earn their own money for alot of these expenses.

  • LHHS’89

    I still have a FMJH mum from the early 80s… cowbells and all.  Kind of fun to see how things have changed in 25+ years.  I also have a few of those spirit ribbon things the school sold before football games.  We’d wear them with our pep squad uniforms.  :) 

  • Proud Wildcat

    I don’t know about the rest of my neighbors, but one of the things that I love so much about our community is the sense of tradition.  One of those traditions is Homecoming Mums made and sold by LHHS Band moms.  There will always be someone who takes it “one step further” – but in my opinion, the majority of mums you see at the Homecoming football game are tasteful and fun and give the owner and the maker a great sense of wildcat pride!

  • Wildcatmom

    The LHHS band  moms are furiously making this year’s mums for the band fundraiser as I type this.  The money spent on those benefit the band and hence LHHS.     
    I went to high school in Louisiana and had not heard of the outrageous mums until I moved here.  I think it may be more of a Texas thing than a southern thing.  A friend from Florida had never heard of it until coming to Texas also.  

  • Jason

    I agree with you Christina.  Mums are ridiculous.  $50 is outrageous.  If my kid asked me for $500 for a mum for his homecoming date, he’d get laughed out of the house and told to go mow the lawn.  $500 is a complete non-starter.

  • LHHS Band

    When I was at Lake Highlands High School, the mums sold at the school were made by the mothers of band members as a fundraiser for the band.  I assume this hasn’t changed, so students are already helping others by purchasing mums.