Column: A Window To Collegiate Utopia
Published: Sunday, September 23, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, January 9, 2013 18:01
Last year, as the second semester was just beginning and everybody was barely settled into their classes, the one conversation topic that couldn’t be avoided was: “What are you doing for housing next year?” This inescapable topic caused much consternation amongst the freshmen and was surely the end to many friendships. Luckily, I did not lose friends over the issue, but I was unsure what I wanted to do.
My (and every other freshman’s) greatest concern was the possibility of living on CoRo. It was a travesty to be avoided at all costs. In light of that, I thought my best bet would be to go for a triple in 66 with my two best friends. Sure, it wasn’t an eight-man, but at least I would be on Lower. My best friend, also an Andrew, had other ideas. Growing up attending Boston College football games and having tailgated in the Mods as a 15-year-old, he has always had a really good take on the pulse of the BC culture. He understood better than anyone I’ve known here what the spirit of each dorm was. There was the Chevy basement stoner culture, the Kostka b—ches (sorry, ladies who live or lived in Kostka, it’s nothing personal), Mod-life, icky Iggy, and the Vandy lifestyle.
For him, there was nothing greater than Vandy life. It was what he dreamed of when he came to this school and he wanted nothing more than to live it up in Vandy for his sophomore year. I was not so convinced. He did lay out a compelling argument and eventually convinced me so well that I wondered why I ever doubted him. He cited the spacious living rooms with plenty of room for activities, the personal bathrooms, the chance to live with your seven (or eight in our case) closest friends, the proximity of the Mods, and the opportunity to live with an enormous number of fellow sophomores.
Well, the dream turned out to be everything that he claimed it would be and more. The one thing that has really done it for me is the proximity to the Mods. Sure, it’s been convenient on Friday nights when I want to go out, but it is also much more that that. I am lucky enough to live on the Mod side of Vandy, and so my window has a beautiful view out to the backyard of Mods 32 and 34, as well as a view to several other Mods.
Over the course of the last several weeks, I have realized that I have a window into a microcosm of the American Dream. To outsiders, the Mods may seem like disgusting little red buildings of grime and filth (and it is possibly true that they are), but to their inhabitants, they are so much more. They offer boundless possibilities for entertainment of all kind—and not just the sort that happens on Friday night, either.
Last Friday, I saw a casual game of croquet that I had to stop and watch for a little while (croquet is one of my favorite lazy afternoon pastimes). I’ve seen guys throwing around the old pigskin, tossing the disc, and playing corn-hole. One afternoon, I saw three guys in the 32/34 backyard launching water-balloons at their unsuspecting fellow Mod-dwellers with a three-man slingshot.
The best example, I think, was last Monday. The fellows in Mod 30A brought their big screen TV outside, fired up their grill, and cracked open an ice cold 30 rack with their 10 closest friends. I watched as they ate hamburgers and watched Monday Night football and was struck by how American the whole scene seemed.
This, I think, is the beauty of college life—the unbounded opportunity to spend time with your closest friends any and all the time. And opportunity is what America is all about. So, if you’ll excuse me, I have a WoMBQ to attend in Mod 19B.