While frantically fanning the smoke alarm with a Wheat Thins box I thought, “third day of orientation and I’m already learning something.” That something was that you should never put an English Muffin in the microwave for longer than a minute. I also learned to always wear shoes when you leave your room because chances are, if you’re like me, you will forget your key. Walking barefoot across cobble stones to the housing center isn’t fun (that was the fifth time— in five days—that I got locked out). I learned that you should just sign up for every club that sounds even a little bit interesting because (a) you can always un-sign up and (b) they have free food at the meetings. I learned to actually read the label on your clothes before washing them. And to check to see if you remembered to add the laundry detergent before you press start on three loads. And I learned that college is far from the real world (who came up with the title for this column?). I’m constantly surrounded by friends and there is always something happen- ing. At midnight one Tues- day, a girl was explaining cognitive neuroscience to me while two people salsa danced and a five people stood in a massage train. I’ve been to a free concert and a glow-in-the-dark paint rave and I’m going to a foam party tonight. Yesterday we devoured made-to-order cookies (yes they deliver and you can get a side of milk) while “studying” in the common room. No way is the real world this much fun.
I sat in on a night class. Let me tell you: real world men and women are downers. Never before have I been in a classroom with such jaded, negative people. Quite frankly, their ideas were simplistic. They could only see the world in black and white. The best thing about is that you quickly become aware of all of the grey out there. Nothing is straightforward. You will realize how little you know, both information wise and life wise. Some people react by clinging onto preconceived notions about what college is supposed to be. Those are the people who are out at 2:00 AM when they would rather be in bed and the people who are in bed when they would rather be out. Instead, I’ve decided to take everything one decision at a time and not worry too much about where I’ll end up and whether I’m doing things “correctly.” College is my chance to live in the grey and I’m going to take full advantage of it. Hope- fully, that’ll help me avoid becoming one of those uninspired adults. This could be a huge mistake. I’ll keep you guys updated.