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The Daily Cardinal Est. 1892
Friday, April 12, 2024

Undefined persona talks with a spider

\Roy, I've got quite an emotional hangover today,"" I lament.  

 

 

 

It is Sunday and Roy is a dead spider who dangles from an aged web in my Dayton Street basement.  

 

 

 

""OK, you're gonna laugh at me, buddy. But I went to a frat party last night."" 

 

 

 

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Roy's great. He really lets you tell the whole story before making any judgments. 

 

 

 

""Well, my underage sister was here and a friend of a friend's jam band was playing at the frat. And I haven't been to a fraternity in ages. So I thought I might try it..."" 

 

 

 

Roy listens attentively under the spotlighting of a poorly placed lamp. 

 

 

 

I pull up a stool and explain. 

 

 

 

""OK, Roy, here's how it went down: The frat boys lingered in the back by the keg, each accompanied by approximately three sparkle princesses unsuccessfully attempting a jam-band, glitter-girl grind. The hippies did their freedom dance by the side of the room, remarked on their highness and proclaimed they only drink beer from Mason jars, not kegs or environmentally unfriendly plastic cups. 

 

 

 

""Frats and hippies chillin' together-weird, but I can dig it.  

 

 

 

""I almost spewed my Creep Nasty Light all over the warped wooden floor, however, when I saw the group that overtook the main room of the generic fraternity. There they were, amassed in front of the five-piece jam band: a confident gang of hippie/Greek crossbreeds. 

 

 

 

""Bearing tight wife beaters with drawings of testicles and misspelled promises about sexual favors scrawled on them, you'd think these kids were just another Langdon Street bunch with permanent markers. But from the waist down, they were covered in flowing tie-dye, hemp belts and brown, Biblical-style sandals. They shook their hips like J-Lo, but turned their wrists above their heads in a flower child daze, and Roy, was I confused! 

 

 

 

""I like to think I'm slightly idealistic, but not an idiot. I accept that stereotypes like 'the frat party girl' and 'the stoner dude' exist for a reason. But crossbreeding? This is something I can't get used to. 

 

 

 

""Don't get me wrong-I'm all about some diversity, especially here. But, Roy, I thought these four (five?) undergraduate years existed to bust up some stereotypes, not to create new hybrids of rigidly defined groups!  

 

 

 

""If stereotypes are a 'so high school' phenomenon that lingers only mildly in college, isn't college the time of casting them off? 

 

 

 

""Maybe I've just been out of the Langdon area scene too long, but it seemed to me that an increasing number of students were satisfied with an 'undefined' persona. If this isn't true, I'm afraid I've been getting weirder and weirder under the false impression that the majority of campus was coming with me.  

 

 

 

""I mean, someone could have told me sooner. At this point, I've developed an indefinable wardrobe, enjoy long walks on a frozen beach just as much as burping contests and confide in a dead spider minimally once a day (no offense, Roy). 

 

 

 

""If I've ignored this concept of the stereotypical high schooler transforming into a more complex yet equally defined crossbreed in college, I'd like someone to tell me. 

 

 

 

""'Cuz Roy, I know where the paper towels are, and we both know where you belong."" 

 

 

 

But for now, I'm going to hold off on any extreme measures and embrace my pointless quirks and satisfying randomness. At least until Maroon 5 covers 'Wish You Were Here.'"" 

 

 

 

ewinter@wisc.edu. 

 

 

 

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