Pretty much every day I find myself in awe/blind rage at some of the ridiculous or socially unaware things that my peers here at UR do, so I figured what better way to start than to tell everyone what to do? These are my Rules for Going Here—I hope that somehow this helps someone out there, because God knows you we need it.
Don’t be “that guy” in lectures: you took AP Econ in high school, you don’t have to let someone with a PhD tell you shit! Having a constructive conversation is one thing, and that’s more than okay—trying to undermine someone that is a luminary in their discipline in front of 200 people is another. Some professors (e.g. Rizzo) will make an example of you if you try to argue with them. During these moments, I want to bring out popcorn and yell “WorldStar” or whatever it is that kids do these days, and so should you. Even if you are right, which you are not, at least do everyone the courtesy of waiting until after the lecture is over. After an hour plus of playing Pokemon Blue on my laptop, I do not want to be late to my next class because everyone had to hear whatever it was you were blabbering about. Congrats on your class participation grade.
Don’t wear your Harvard/Cornell/Better School than UR gear: you totally could’ve/should’ve gotten into an Ivy, and everyone needs to know. Honestly, it’s my bad for diluting your existence with mediocrity. Not that I’m teeming with Yellowjacket pride or considering getting a “Meliora” knuckle tatt, but come on. This is completely absurd, and needs to stop. If your brother goes to Stanford and you got a hoodie from there, that’s fine I guess, but I don’t see why you’d want to constantly remind yourself of being the black sheep of your family anyway. This falls into the same category as the freshman athlete that says they “had D1 looks.” This may be true for some of you, but it’s probably not, and if even if it is, nobody cares about how you got politicked out of sitting on the bench for Holy Cross basketball or whatever.
Walk on the right side of things: this should be pretty obvious. If it’s not, congrats on completely duping the admissions office into thinking that you will someday become a well-adjusted member of society. Nothing is more infuriating than trying to drag myself through the tunnels and having to decide between being late to wherever I’m going, or elbowing some clown walking as fast as someone on their way to the electric chair.
Be humane to UR staff: you don’t have to give the dude that cleans your bathroom a card during the holiday season, but be good to the people that work here, especially the ones at food places. Even if they don’t hook you up with free food (remember Kim with the buzz cut at the Pit? We miss you, girl), most of them are pretty cool. One time the lady at Blimpie hugged me, so I’m pretty sure that she loves me more than my dad does. Also, getting to know campus security never hurts. It’s important to note that professors do not count in this. Most of them don’t care about you, and will make sure you know it one way or another. It is perfectly normal and healthy to take a grudge against a professor to the grave.
Don’t be obnoxious about Greek life: Greek life is a great way to meet friends/be a part of something that helps the community/however else you justify it. I get that; there’s nothing wrong with frats and sororities, and I think that the people that actively, fundamentally oppose them should use their time to crusade about more important things. With that said, some people take things too far. You are not “in love” with the girl you met a week ago that just bought you some bulk candy and made you a scrapbook. That is 100% impossible, and I just unfollowed you on Instagram and in life. Also, stop spamming me with Facebook event invitations. Somehow each week, every sorority has a 5k for charity, a blood drive, a fundraiser for a really specific disease that I’ve never heard of but am now terrified of, and a bar party. Leave us alone so we can use Facebook to compare ourselves to people we went to high school with in peace.
Don’t brag about how much you study: I don’t know if this is a thing at other schools, and for the sake of humanity I hope it’s not. Sleeping in Gleason doesn’t make you cool. Setting up a tent in 3 new and living there like some absurd version of Into the Wild does not make you cool. U of R is pretty hard; the thing is, we all go here, so we get that. Nobody likes the person that’s like “I literally just spent all of Thanksgiving break doing homework in ITS”. People wear that like a badge of honor, and that is absolutely ridiculous. Instead, you should probably just get some sleep or try managing your time. If that doesn’t work out, just go ahead and embrace mediocrity—outside of the kid in the Stanford hoodie, nobody will judge you for that.
Appreciate the graveyard: This is less of a rule than it is a recommendation. Somehow a two hundred year old graveyard is less scary at night than the 19th Ward. It’s useful to be able to find your way through there. Know where the holes are in the fence, too. If you don’t know what I mean by this, you won’t need to.
Be a normal person in the gym: The GAC is an important place on campus for people to relieve stress or punish themselves for eating two Zonies in one sitting (if you call it Calio’s, get out of my face), and has a delicate ecosystem. The gym has its own set of rules, which are as such:
- Don’t grunt/scream—you’re not giving birth, you’re pretending to be in shape. Act like it (cc: football team, bros with barbed wire bicep tattoos, etc.).
- Have a socially acceptable level of personal hygiene—showers are included in tuition, might as well use them.
- Don’t do couples workouts—I hope your girlfriend messes up spotting your bench press while checking out the dude with the neck tattoo.
- Stay in your lane—when people ask “how’s it going?” at the gym, just say “good” like a normal human being. There is a time and place for hearing a detailed breakdown of your depressing job search, but it’s not the GAC.
- Don’t wear jeans—how are there even people that go to the gym wearing jeans? Like don’t you sweat and chafe a ton? Truly bizarre. Completely unacceptable either way.
- Don’t play music out loud—that is annoying, no matter what you’re playing. Yes, I like What a Time to Be Alive, but no, I do not want to listen to you and your boyz bumping it. Why are you working out with three other people anyway? It’s like book club for meatheads. I’ll be the guy not rocking the boat and listening to Ace of Base through my headphones (Ace of Base is sweet and if you disagree you are uncultured and your parents did a shit job of raising you).