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The first weekend

Bill Brink | Thursday, August 30, 2007

The weekend is fast approaching, and for freshmen it’s their first without declaring their love for other dorms via chants or late-night runs around campus. I’ve overheard some of them making plans to have parties this weekend, and I was reminded of the good old days when I attended my first dorm party.

In retrospect, like many of the beverages consumed during them, dorm parties are an acquired taste.

It was the night before our first home football game. I soon realized that even though I was making a short trip across the hall, mesh shorts were not the recommended attire. I walked-no, shoved-my way in to a darkened room full of sopping wet bodies indistinguishable from each other, all moving to the beat of an unrecognizable song. The guys all had some sort of collar on, another memo I missed, and the girls all had donned some sort of club attire.

What fun is this? I had known everyone there for exactly one week and was in no hurry to entertain myself by dancing for the next two hours. Unfortunately, I had no choice, considering I was enveloped in the broiling-hot mob of people and forced to move at their discretion.

After being violently expelled from the mosh pit half an hour later, I escaped into the hall. Our RA was threatening to shut the party down. I went to the bathroom to find someone had thrown up, completely missing the toilet but covering pretty much everything else. What a successful night.

Eventually all females were evacuated and my friends and I, along with everyone else still awake and on campus, descended on Reckers. We ate and attempted to discuss the night, everyone screaming because they had lost their voice and because our ears were still ringing from the nonstop bass they had been bombarded with. Off-campus was starting to look good.

Eventually, the party scene got better. We created traditions for our parties.

One night we did some crowd-surfing; another night we set up a ‘volleyball net’ made of Christmas lights and played volleyball. During one party we left briefly and returned with two signs to adorn the walls of the room. Even the Reckers trips became more fun: karaoke nights became quite a spectacle to watch.

So freshmen, before departing for your first evening experience in one of our illustrious residence halls, prepare to leave the premises soaked. Be ready to be threatened by RAs you’ve never seen. Don’t be surprised when the song changes every eight seconds. But most of all, make it your own. Find some friends to enjoy it with. Off-campus has its merits; make sure to experience that too. But don’t discount dorm parties too quickly. Mimic the upperclassmen. Create themes for your parties. Invite hundreds more people than can fit in the room.

And most importantly, to avoid carrying your phone and keys around for two hours like I did, wear shorts with pockets.