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Crookston Times - Crookston, MN
  • Rules are rules, dude, and maybe that's for the best

  • Mike Stone and Megan Piper aren't going to prom, but will they spend an evening together anyway?


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  • It seems strange to find oneself using words like “cute” or “sweet” to describe a story that involves a high school senior going on a special date with a porn actress, but those kinds of warm and fuzzy descriptions are what cross the mind when one first comes across the tale of Mike Stone and?Megan Piper.
     
        Stone is the high school senior, at Tartan High School in Oakdale, Minn., specifically.?Piper is the adult film actress. Stone, who has never attended a prom, said he had been turned down this spring by every girl at his high school that he’d asked. So he commenced with Plan B: He resorted to Twitter to find a date, a celebrity date, to be exact. He tweeted reality-TV stars like Snooki and Kim Kardashian, asking if they were free on May 12, the date of Tartan’s prom. Stone never got a reply from either of them – Snooki's pregnant, after all, but what's Kim's excuse? – so Stone subsequently sent hundreds of similar tweets to porn actresses. Piper, who’d apparently never attended any of her high school proms, either, and was suddenly overcome with pangs of sentimental nostalgia, tweeted back, saying she’d love to go to Stone’s prom with him, as long as he paid for her plane ticket to get from California.
     
        See??Isn’t that sweet...on some twisted, bizarre level, at least? It sounds like a great plot for an episode of "How I Met Your Mother." I can only assume that, of course, since I've never watched the show starring Doogie Howser, MD.
     
        But it looks like Mike and Megan are going to be two ships that pass in the night. Their dream date, at least at prom, is not going to happen. Patty Phillips, superintendent of the North St.?Paul-Oakdale School?District, cites school district policies that forbid Piper to attend prom. An activities policy, specifically, that prohibits things that “substantially disrupt” the orderly operation of a school activity seems to definitely cover a high school senior being accompanied to prom by a porn actress. The disruptive angle would seem to be amplified in a major way when you consider that the Stone/Piper story has and continues to receive considerable national media attention. One can assume that, if Piper were to somehow show up at the prom with Stone on?May 12, the media would be in feeding frenzy mode.
     
        Stone’s classmates, at least those interviewed by the media, are supportive of his choice for a prom date. He seems to be seen by his peers as anything but a ladies' man who deserves a chance at ending his high school career with an unforgettable prom experience. Even his sister says he should be able to "go out with a bang." Stone's mother and his aunt, also interviewed by many media outlets, are in his corner, too, although his mom insists he will be coming home alone after the prom. Other parents, not surprisingly, who have gone on camera side with the school district, however. That's understandable; after all, they probably don't want their kids' prom experience disrupted by a circus atmosphere.
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        Stone seems intent on somehow enjoying an evening with Piper on May 12, at prom or somewhere else. He says he’ll throw his own party if he has to. He’s talking about doing a fundraiser to get enough money to fly Piper to Minnesota, and a travel agency has apparently offered to cover her travel expenses. Oh, the possibilities: The 2012 Tartan High School Senior Prom...Brought to you by Expedia Travel.com! Maybe they can get their logo on the blimp that hovers over the school on May 12.
     
        When it comes to the letter of the law, the school district in this case is absolutely right. Piper’s attendance at prom would cause a major disruption. Even if the other Tartan students took it all in stride and behaved as if nothing was out of the ordinary, the TV?helicopters circling above would be an obvious indicator that something unusual is afoot.
     
        But, still, it’s kind of weird, how reading this story in print makes you react one way, but then seeing Stone interviewed on TV triggers a different, more cynical reaction. He comes across as innocent, hopelessly naive and maybe even a bit vulnerable. And then there's Piper. Although her story might be absolutely true, about how she missed the crowning event of her high school days because her family moving to a new state during her senior year, you have to wonder what truly motivated her to say yes to Stone. Think what you want to about the porn industry, but it's highly likely that Piper is no dummy and is in fact quite business savvy when it comes to promoting herself. Think of the countless  masses who had never heard of Megan Piper before this story broke, and now think of how many people who not only know her name, but have Googled her to see what she looks like, and maybe even see her in action. Piper is far more famous today than she was a week ago, all because she accepted some sad kid's offer to go to his prom with him.
     
        Maybe the happiest ending to this story would involve a responsible adult intervening and telling Stone that his plans with Piper simply aren’t going to work out. Maybe then, given all the attention his efforts to find a date have gotten, some Tartan girl who’d also like to go to prom but hasn't been asked will find her way to him.
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