The collegiate life has several staples that make it a once-in-a-lifetime experience. Some are great, some are terrible, but they all are “part of the experience,” as many parents say.
Nevertheless, with graduation coming up rather quickly, it’s time to reflect and look at what parts of college life I will hardly miss the most.
1. Man-eating squirrels
Eastern is practically famous for these feisty fellows. They’re in the trees, stalking you from the skies; they’re in the trash cans, eating your discarded food. They’re even in your backpack as you reach for that geography book half buried under crumpled bits of paper that weren’t there before.
Oh, and by the way, that was your homework. Happy Monday.
2. Frustrating study nights
More than half of these monstrosities are caused by the evil thing that no one likes. It’s in every class, and no professor seems to understand that it’s pointless: Busy Work.
Yes, despite the pleas and prostrations by the peon students, professors still assign an entire chapter of “The Responsibilities and Sociological Impact of the Non-Migratory Swallow, Volume 52” for a night’s reading. Needless to say, it brings out the worst in us all, and some turn into the rabid, man-eating squirrels mentioned above. Avoid busy work. Stay alive.
3. Finding a parking spot
I’ve been the persistent optimist on the parking situation on campus. “Walking five minutes isn’t that bad,” or “Just get out on the road sooner,” were taglines. There were days where you could pull into just about any spot on the streets and fit in nicely. Others, however, take nearly 20 minutes driving around in a loop, seeing if the guy getting into the red Honda had finally left.
Managing parking on the streets surrounding the campus is easy if you do have a few extra minutes to spare. But, for those of us who were pretty deep into that Non-Migratory Swallow reading last night, that’s a near impossible task.
4.Paying for tuition
Also known as “The Day from Hell,” the deadline for paying tuition ends up ruining any week. Just as you begin to get the hang of classes, there’s that little pricking reminder to pay the man. Pay up, or pay a fine. Pay up, or, well, don’t go to college this quarter. Yes, it’s that time of the year that ruins a week, makes Friday the 13th look heavenly and makes expired milk taste awesome.
By graduating from college, however, that day is eliminated. It’s gone and sent away to be no more! Instead of racking up just enough money at a minimum wage job to pay off three months of agony, those dollars can be saved up.
Road trip, anyone?
5: Macaroni and Cheese nights
The blue box filled with orange powder has been a staple of my diet over the last four years. It’s cheap, it’s delicious and it’s filling… for a few hours. No more macaroni and cheese from the box. That’s the plan. I’ve managed without eating Ramen noodles, as those feel like salty worms in your mouth.
But macaroni and cheese? It is the best thing a dollar can buy.
No, mac and cheese is the expected part of a college diet. You can practically do anything with it. Beef mac n’ cheese, chicken mac n’ cheese, baked mac n’ cheese, veggie mac n’ cheese, mac n’ cheese on toast, mac n’ cheese pot roast. Rumor has it that there is macaroni and cheese sushi out there, but that is just one road this guy will never go down.
On second thought, I’ll still keep eating it on occasion. After all, some things are best kept near and dear to the heart – and artery walls.