>>> The Rollercoaster of Drama
By staff writer Simonne Cullen
March 13, 2005

Have you ever had that dream where you puke, then wake up the next morning thinking how realistic the dream was? But then it takes you a few seconds to realize that your throat is actually throbbing, your breath stinks like doggie poo, and—oh yeah, you still have chunks hanging from your hair…maybe it wasn't a dream after all. And even more real than throwing up on yourself is the fact that you just shrug it off, brush your teeth, and put in a movie because you're too hung over to go to class. Welcome to Senior Year.

For those of us not going to grad school, the final semester is—well, it's when a lot of people just kind of give up. The local college bar is packed every night, and if you were smart enough to get all of your gen eds out of the way, you're pretty much coasting your way to the oversized-podium, gown-wearing, hand-shaking climax that you've paid a small fortune for. And what do you have to show for it? Lots of bar receipts and a diploma that's going to hang in your parent's house 'til you find a place of your own that has decent dry wall to dangle it from—which won't be your first two apartments.

There's nothing worse than being that senior who has to pass all of his classes last semester. It must suck watching everyone party every night while you're in the library with the freshmen who are still taking the whole work thing seriously, because you're serving as an example of what they don't want to be doing senior year: an overweight senior with a drinking problem who can't wait to move back in with his mother.

Final semester is when all of the crazies come out of the woodwork. Girls are still creating big elaborate plans to tell the guy they've been crushing on that they've loved him the past four years. I can't believe girls are still pulling this stunt. If the guy hasn't had a conversation with you that didn't start out with, “How'd you think the bio midterm went?” Then chances are he's not interested. So stop writing the confessing love letter, or the secret admirer bullshit and grow up. We're mature adults now, act like it: At the next senior party (also known as any weekday), get bombed, get him bombed, then wink, grab his hand and pull him into the nearest janitor closet.

Brad Pitt, who gets mentioned twice in this article by the way, says in Troy that Gods are jealous of us because we're doomed. We will never have this moment again. Yada yada go into his butt scene with the virgin girl who doesn't wear panties. Aside from the poor costume design he does have a point. We never will be in this moment again, we'll never get this time back, we've got to make every minute—every second—count. If you leave here with no regrets then you didn't do it right—so the message is when with Brad…and don't wear panties because it's too time consuming. Seconds like those are priceless people.

So Lawrence has this tradition where the whole senior class streaks from one side of campus to the bar and then hangs out there naked. Now I appreciate tradition and what not, but isn't that a little unsanitary? Standing in a bar naked holding your vodka cranberry…you're a little buzzed when you think you're reaching for a glass but instead pull on your buddy's wiener? Then you have to pour your drink on your hand in hopes to kill anything on his doodle that's potentially tainted it.

The other day my mom asked me what I was doing that I couldn't call her back for three days. So making up an excuse I threw my schedule at her, and as I was going through my day I realized that I potentially have a ton of shit to do. Ideally it would be 7:30 wake up, shower and eat, 8:30 go to class, 9:50 another class, 11:00 tutorial, noon lunch, 1:00 theater set construction, 4:00 shower, 5:00 work, 9:30 study 'til bed. Just writing that out made me exhausted. But really it's more like 9:30 class because I dropped that 8:30 one, 11:00 tutorial, then sleep 'til 4, go to work and meet all the other seniors at the bar. Yeah that sounds about right. Oh look at that it's time for another nap.

My mom called to ask me what I was doing after graduation. Does anyone have those parents who think you're going to grad school when you've told them you're taking a year off? This conversation is priceless. “Well I'm going to move out to LA.” “Oh you're going to UCLA then?” “No mom, just to live.” “Really?” “Well once you establish residency you can go to a California school cheap.” “Maybe, but I'd like to just try things out on my own for a while.” “Well where will you work? Where will you live? You can't move out there without having a job? How can you get a decent job if you don't go to grad school?” And you get so fed up that you casually mention in a snotty sarcastic tone normally reserved for the nagging mother, “Sure mom, I'll just swing by Paramount Studios when I de-board the plane and have them whip me up a contract. Hopefully my first film will co-star Brad Pitt so I can just crash at his place 'til I find one on my own—you know the real-estate out there is such a hassle.” And then she replies to take this whole life thing more seriously and you end the call with…”You know, I'm missing Family Guy, can we have this conversation later? Like never again?”

What I'll never understand is the guy who always makes sure he goes to the last class of the term. Sure he hasn't been able to make it there for the past five classes, and there was a time earlier when he missed two weeks straight, but what is the logic here? If he shows up at the last class the professor will appreciate his cameo and remember it when it comes time to grade the final? If anything he'd probably just look at the kid and go, “Son are you lost?”

And the reality is most of us at this point are lost. We don't really know what we're going to do after college. But what's a real bitch is meeting someone with like a five-year plan and having that “What are you doing after graduation conversation?” And they blurt out, “Well I'm deciding on a law school right now, and after that I'd ideally like to get involved with (insert fancy firm name here), and hopefully become a junior partner.” Then it's your time to share in the ever-pleasant sharing circle of pretentious delusion and you find yourself desperately looking for that hippie who's hitch-hiking to California to sell organic granola on Venice Beach only to realize that he's got a plan too. So instead you stare blankly, making the moment so awkward that everyone just kinds of shuffle away from you and gives you pity stares…including the hemp-wearing hippie fucker.