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Kistaro Windrider, Reptillian Situation Assessor

Unfortunately, I Really Am That Nerdy

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Night 1: Just say "No"
color cycle (slow)
Last night was rather interesting. As requested by the PAs and RA, I left my dorm's door open when I was in it and in a semi-sociable mood- and promptly discovered that somebody from a special activity program I joined several years back (PROBE, yet another one of those hands-on learning thingies) lived two doors down.

We talked, played a few Icehouse-based games, and discovered that she had come in late and couldn't get her books.

I informed her she had a reading assignment due Monday. (True. I still need to read it.) I let her borrow my copy of the book, which she just returned to me.

Later, as I was debating whether to just call it a night at 9:15 PM or wander around aimlessly more, I heard Vijay- the RA (Residence Advisor- uh, assistant? The senior dude here)- asking if anybody wanted to play basketball. "You don't have to be any good, or have played anytime in the last 10 years. Anybody want to play?"

I needed the exercize, so with the warning that I actually haven't played for over six years, joined up.

I think the best part was how, while I was obviously and thoroughly the least competent player on the court... nobody minded. We all had fun. (I even managed to make myself useful at a few points in the game! Wow!)

The team I was on lost- no surprise, as we had divided by height- but we all had fun...

After showering and heading to bed at around 10:30, I was starting to wish the din of the dorms would silence at least somewhat. It did, although Saturday quiet hours don't begin until 1:00 AM, but at a few minutes until midnight:



Someone was *WHAM* knocking on the door.

Well, whatever. I pulled myself out of bed and opened the door to see what it was.

"Hey, you want to go drink with us?"

Washington University's alcohol policy is disturbingly leniant. If they see you in a hallway or public area with alcohol they make you pour it out- but not if you're in your own dorm. Age irrelevant and they don't call the police. They want people to have freedom to learn, experience, and grow up- they noted that this is as much of that as anything else.

However, that did little to change my opinion. "No. For one, I'm 17, for two, I have no intention of ever drinking alcohol in my entire life, and three, no."

"Never? Dude, nobody does that."

"My parents managed. Can I go back to sleep now?"

"Yeah, sorry about that, didn't think anybody went to sleep this early on Saturday."

"If they didn't sleep at all on Friday they do."

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It was great to hear you sum it up in one whirlwind post, and your first day is always kinda like that.

People in college get stupid about drinking, especially freshmen. It's like it's a boundary they feel they need to cross to become real people. Sometimes, just saying No and not offering any panic or reason behind it works fine. Disdane them away!

"Abstaining Myself"

...Beer is an acquired taste anyway.

I personally feel it's worth doing once for the experience, just so you know what you're missing. But don't rush it. You've got the rest of your life to try, and chances are good it'll be underwhelming when you do.

Having felt as you did until the age of 20 -- and then having then gotten drunk and realizing that I am a morose drunk -- and then having had a few situations where I had a little just to be polite and had a fun time anyway -- I now am at the point where I am willing to drink lightly, socially, even though the month where I actually touch alcohol is rare, and I probably average less than 6 servings of alcohol a year.

The moral of the story is, good for you; and absolutely wait to do it until you're comfortable. However, be aware that, unless you get in with a geek crowd very quickly, you're also going to find yourself starting to volunteer or be volunteered as a designated driver.

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