What is it about Shaun White that drives Carly Monzo crazy? It starts with what’s on top of his head.
“I love that luscious orange hair of his,” said the 18-year-old Flourtown resident while laughing.
Monzo, a senior at Mount St. Joseph Academy, says she’s always had a huge crush on the two-time Olympic gold medal-winning snowboarder.
“I love his personality,” she said. “He’s so funny! I could watch interviews with him all day, every day and never get bored. “
It was this obsession that sparked an idea that even Monzo admits seemed far-fetched at the time. The thought first popped into her head as her friends and classmates began searching for dates for their senior prom.
“Everyone was stressing out about prom,” Monzo said. “I was like, ‘Guys, I’m gonna ask Shaun White to the prom.’”
Naturally, her friends laughed it off. As they soon learned, however, Monzo was completely serious.
“I just wouldn’t stop thinking about it,” she said. “I had to do it.”
With her friends' help, Monzo made a video asking White to the prom. The video, recorded with a GoPro camera (one of White’s sponsors), features music from White’s rock band Bad Things.
The funny clip features just about anything you could ask for in four minutes, including clever editing, tricky camera shots, comedy, old Shaun White interviews and cameos from Monzo’s friends.
Once the video was completed, Monzo posted it and sent it to White’s Twitter account.
“I just copied the link and tweeted it,” she said. “I asked everyone to retweet it and favorite it.”
After a month with no response, Monzo figured her video was lost in the millions of tweets that her celeb crush normally receives. It’s a belief she held Friday night when she attended her prom at the Whitemarsh Valley Country Club.
That all changed once she arrived and a school staffer called out her name.
“I thought I was in trouble,” Monzo said. “I went out to the front and then all of a sudden the curtain on this photo booth dropped.”
Behind the curtain were none other than White and his band Bad Things.
“His band just started playing!” Monzo said. “I literally was just speechless. And I’m never speechless, I could talk forever.”
As the song ended and Monzo slowly regained her ability to speak, she could only think of one word to say.
“I got up on the stage after the song was over and I was like, 'Hiiiii,’” Monzo said. “He said hi back. It was all kind of a blur after that.”
One moment Monzo remembers clearly though is slow dancing with Shaun to "At Last" by Etta James.
“The whole crowd starts chanting, ‘Kiss! Kiss!’” Monzo said. “So he gave me a little peck on the cheek.”
Contrary to what Monzo originally thought, White had seen her tweet and planned to attend her prom with his band about a month in advance. Monzo says some of her friends were in on it and helped keep the surprise date a secret.
It was an experience that Monzo will cherish forever, though she does have one regret.
“Everyone was like, ‘You didn’t get his number!’” she said. “But I was so frozen in the moment that I didn’t even think about it.”
Fortunately, Monzo will still have the chance. Since their date, Monzo says White has kept in touch.
"He tweeted at me a few times," she said.
With the incredible night still fresh in her head, Monzo has advice for anyone else who dreams of one day meeting their celebrity crush.
“Give it your all and go for it!” she said. “You never know! Follow your dreams!”
Photo Credit: Carly Monzo