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Bad luck leads to good advice

| Thursday, August 30, 2018

Since becoming a junior at Saint Mary’s, I’ve often been accosted by underclassmen in need of advice: “How did you survive your first two years?!” Well, I had a lot of bad luck, and maybe I made some mistakes, but I survived, which I believe is my raison d’etre for writing this now. So, here is some completely solid advice based on my own personal experiences at Saint Mary’s.

Do make friends with everyone you meet, even if that girl is loudly yelling, ‘You leave him alone!’ at a security officer nudging a seemingly dead raccoon with a broom. This raccoon is not dead, just disorientated and bloated because your newfound friend likes to unwrap Rice Krispie treats and place them in the trash can as a treat for this raccoon. While your first encounter with her is strange, she becomes a great friend for life. 

Do go to your professors’ office hours — if anything, their offices are available as air conditioned spaces in which you can cry about all your stresses.

Do not be afraid to stay on campus for breaks, just do not go to a sketchy sushi restaurant on Thanksgiving, get food poisoning and then go back a week later for a friend’s birthday party and order the same sushi because you are too shy to explain all that happened to your friend.

Do ride your bike on campus, just make sure you know how to navigate your bike through a crowd of people because, if not, you will crash your bike into a girl, bend the rim and injure yourself and the girl all while being late for class.

Do get a campus job, just get one in an office environment and not one that requires you to help several of your peers don camouflage squirrel costumes in the stuffy backstage of a theatre. This makes for awkward head nods and glances when you see these same people around campus.

Do not laugh openly about the ghosts of Saint Mary’s because you will get trapped in an elevator, locked out of your room after a shower and almost get run over by a car all within the same week.

About getting stuck in an elevator: Do press the emergency call button. Do not, as I learned, email the professor whose class you are running late for and tell them you are trapped in an elevator. They will not offer any assistance, only mark down an unexcused absence and send you PDFs of the readings they handed out in class. These readings, however, will help you pass the time as several firefighters attempt to pry open the elevator doors.

Do not go to your Observer meeting if your credit card information/identity gets stolen. Maybe deal with that first.

Do take every opportunity you are given. You will be tired, stressed, irritable and will organize the posters on your wall at 3 a.m. because you lack any other time to do so (much to the irritation of your roommate), but you will be better for it.

While Murphy’s Law may be true, and even if the worst-case scenario happens, you will still survive your underclass years and have some really funny stories about all the misadventures you have accrued, too.

Good luck.

The views expressed in this column are those of the author and not necessarily those of The Observer.

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About Gina Twardosz

Gina Twardosz is a senior English Writing and Communication Studies double major at Saint Mary's College. She's the co-editor of the Investigative Unit, a Saint Mary's social media liaison, and she occasionally writes for SMC News and Scene. Gina is a tried and true Midwesterner and yes, she does say "ope" often.

Contact Gina