Button: A Modern PROMetheus

A Modern PROMetheus


Art by Angeline Tan

Jovana Centeno, Photography Editor

Ah yes. The prom dress. One of the necessities of every girl attending high school prom. What makes this piece of cloth so magically expensive? Truth is, no one has done the prom dress’s creation justice. It is quite wondrous and like most great things in life, it began with a man.

Obviously this man started out as a boy, a boy named Derby Button. The Button family was sweet and all of them took interest in their family business, running a mechanic shop. However, Derby was different. He didn’t long to spend his days fixing a random person’s car. No, he wanted to spend his days creating a random person’s dress. When Derby was eighteen, he decided to  tell his family of his contrasting desires. The Buttons responded with warmth, but Derby saw it as mockery and proceeded with his interest by plotting to create a new dress, unknown to man, for which all would worship him for its creation. Derby moved out within that day, slashing all of their car tires, including his, with contempt for his family’s business. He felt it would be more impactful if his journey were on foot. And so, Derby Button’s endeavor began.

Two paths set before him: a beautiful meadow and a treacherous forest. No one knows why Derby had to walk through nature to begin his creation, he lived in New York after all, but the story rings true and he chose the eerie path through the dark forest. Derby walked and walked, experiencing hunger and thirst with nothing to quench his survival needs but his will to create. Derby began to break down towards the end of his journey. His muscles were fatigued, mouth dry and his stomach ached of hunger. Derby persevered for what felt like months until he grew uncomfortable and tried to adjust his jacket zipper. The zipper got caught on a rogue thread and Derby pulled on it forcefully until the jacket ripped and the zipper broke. This pushed him over the edge. He began breaking twigs and throwing rocks, yelling things like “Curse you faulty zipper!”, until he turned to his left and saw what he had been longing for. All it took was a fifteen minute walk of pure agony to have the fabric store, his true inspiration, finally reveal itself to him.

Derby purchased some materials from the heavenly store and proceeded to find a secluded area to begin his creation of an original, never before seen dress. He found an ominous cottage on a hill and in this cottage, Derby created rituals. Dousing the fabric in purified water, drying it with feathers of a bluebird, dancing around it chanting obscene things like “Chihuahuas are just big rats!” and only using thread if it had been blessed by the fashion gods. Derby spent days executing these rituals, so much so that he did not even respond to one letter his loving family sent him nor did he read them. Derby would not stop working until his creation was finished with the guarantee of being worshiped by lifelong followers.

Alas, everything must come to an end, and though Derby desired the rewards of his creation, he wanted to indulge in the exhilaration he experienced when performing each ritual. With this in mind, Derby decided to create a final ritual more complex than all preceding it to ensure his success. He waited until a night where the full moon was accompanied by thunder and lightning. Derby laid in his cottage, until he finally heard the heavy rumble he had long waited for. Derby paced back and forth with only a candle to light his way upstairs. When the clock struck eleven thirty, Derby ran- well, stumbled, up to his roof, tripping over the stairs. With a bruised knee and busted lip, Derby held the dress up to the moon and cried “Behold, nature, brush your hand upon this dress and all will be finished!” Within that second, lightning struck the dress, sizzling off the last bit of thread needed to finish his creation. Derby collapsed to the ground convulsing into fits of manic laughter and was never to be heard of again.

No one is sure how Derby’s creation got into stores or why it is called a prom dress. Many speculate it was an anagram for his Chihuahua’s name, “Morp Button” or that it is short for the “promise” he had broken when leaving his family’s business. Whatever the name’s origin, the societal impact Derby Button desired had been granted. He gained worshipers for his almighty, all expensive prom dress, happily collected by teenagers for hundreds and thousands of dollars. Inevitably we seek the sacred, high priced prom dress and though expensive, its creator has gone through such a long and strenuous journey to make such perfection that all of our purchases are completely justified.