Monday, May 18, 2009

3 Things I'll miss about College

As I said from the onset of this blog, it's going to deal mostly with sports, because that's my passion, and it's what I know about. But every once and a while, something in politics or pop culture will compel me to write up a little note. In this case, it's graduating from college.

I promise, this will not be an Asher Roth-esque ode. It's just been a tough week trying to adjust to the real world. I know that everything is not lost, and there are somethings that I will continue to do that I did in college. But some of the best memories from the last four years are gone for good.

Weekend Brunch at the Dining Hall

I am not ashamed to admit that I had a meal plan all four years of school. I'm no Gordon Ramsay, not even Guy Fieri. My idea of cooking dinner is putting precooked frozen chicken in the oven. So I had seven meals a week dedicated to Shaw Dining Hall.

More often than not, this was also a time when one of the people I lived with would say, "Guys what the fuck happened last night?" After picking up omelets, bacon, and an assortment of carbs, we'd head back to the house and to piece together the prior evening's activities. And like the final scene of The Usual Suspects, it all comes together for us how our night ended. The reactions would fall anywhere from delighted to disgusted.

Chuck's Happy Hour

For the last two years, nearly every Friday by six o'clock, you could find me posted up at Chuck's with a pitcher in hand. But it's not just the cheap beer and delicious burgers that I'll miss. It's stalking tables like vultures when people leave. It's playing massive games asshole and horse race that get way too rowdy. It's about immortalizing yourself in the bar by writing all over it.

But what I'll miss most are the awkward interactions with people you don't really talk to in class. At the moment your eyes meet, there are only two things that you know: This person is in your class, and this person enjoys drinking. The conversation is more uncomfortable then a Spencer and Heidi serious talk on The Hills. You talk about your class for maybe 30 seconds to be polite, then run to get your beer or use the little boys room. You just can't have those moments in the real world.

Facebook Profile Pictures
The picture I have now is probably my least favorite Facebook picture, but what I love about college is the evolution of the profile pic.

Back in the day, you needed a college email to be on Facebook, so I signed up for Facebook immediately after I got mine. My first picture was me from prom. I was a friggin' stud. Hair cut perfect, goatee all nice; it was probably the best picture I had taken up to that point in my life. And that's what everyone did. You didn't want a picture of you looking like Ugly Betty as the first impression people on your floor had of you. You wanted to knock them dead with your stunning good looks.

The following photos would be quite different. They can best be described as one thing: College. This includes chugging beer, doing beer bongs, playing beer pong, playing flip cup, ripping shots, posing with friends and a bottle, smoking weed, passed out on a toilet bowl, etc. Basically it's just you looking as ridiculous as possible. Not that I would know anything about incriminating photos like that.

At the end of last semester, reality set in: employers look at Facebook. I untagged myself in about 75% of the pictures I was in on Facebook. With that, I also had to get rid of my "guns-a-blazing Beer Olympics" profile picture, for a more conservative pic of me at the Great Wall. That day, a little piece of me died inside.

There's still more to look forward now that college is over. Paychecks on the reg. Networking on the reg. Good times on the reg. But never again can will I be able to throw mash potatoes at a KFC worker and get away with it. College, mi amor.

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Stinks like Dukie in Cuse

I've been a Syracuse Alumnus for five days now, and I've received two sports gifts so to speak. Sunday night the Bruins stayed alive in the playoffs, Big (Shot) Baby hits a jumper to tie the Celts series, and Papelbon strikes out three in a jam to lift the Red Sox to win. This caused me to immediately pound every long island ice tea on the table, and gave me the best possible graduation present. The second came this morning when I got a text message telling me Greg Paulus will play for my Alma Mater in the fall. This "gift" might be one I wish I could return.

The funny thing about rooting for a sports team is you want the best group of guys, but won't sacrifice that for a certain hated players. You know the possible scenarios: Jets fans wouldn't want Brady. Celtics fans puke at the thought of Kobe in Green. The Yankees would never accept a true Red Sox like Rodger Clemens. Hmm, I guess some fans have lower standards.

Nonetheless, this is exactly how I feel about Paulus coming to play for the Orange. Only the Yankees and cowboys can create as much hate as the Blue Devils. For me the reasons are simple: One, the school is better than mine. I couldn't get into Duke, and that pisses me off. Two, the fans are annoying. Not just the Cameron Crazies that make me want to punch babies every time I watch a Duke game, but arrogant fans that talk about Duke's last National Championship like it was last season. Three, I have no factual basis for this, but the players look flat out annoying. They always look two seconds away from screaming like KG in '08, or crying like TO after the Cowboys exit from the playoffs.

And Paulus has been the leader of these guys for the past four years! He didn't start for the Blue Devils this year, but he did start for the Slinky Johnson All-Hate Team. Seriously, do a search for him and the top two results are "Greg Paulus - 'I Kissed a Boy'" and "Tea Bag: A Greg Paulus Tribute". I think my sister's boyfriend put it best when he emailed me this morning saying, "I'd let R. Kelly chaperone a prom before I'd let Paulus run my team."

But I don't have that choice, so I must accept Paulus as the potential starter for the Syracuse Orange next season. Let's look at the bright side. Granted it was five years ago, but the guy was a beast in high school, tallying 152 touchdowns, 11,763 yards, and winning the Gatorade Player of the year. Let's just say that's slightly better than the quarterback play I've seen the last four years in the Dome. Even the hate might benefit the program. People hate Paulus so much, they may actually watch a Syracuse game again to root against him. This could remind people that Cuse still does play Division One Football.

On September 5th, the Syracuse Orange will coming running out of the Dome to play Minnesota. I can't imagine Paulus coming back without thinking he has a real shot to start, so he may even lead the team onto the field. Watching the game will be like rooting for Osama bin Laden and the Taliban. I'll be cheering for Greg Paulus, a Dukie at heart, to lead Syracuse to their first bowl game in five years.