Column: Not Sorry For Party Rocking
Published: Wednesday, September 19, 2012
Updated: Wednesday, January 9, 2013 19:01
A couple of days ago I first learned that the Fall Concert will start at 5 p.m. Since I was abroad last semester and was busy playing blackjack and completing a fraction of the typical Boston College academic workload, I was unaware that the Third Eye Blind concert took place at a similarly early hour. After the initial reaction of “Silly Jesuits trying to ruin a good time,” I began to examine the reasons behind this.
The relationship between BC students and faculty concerning parties is analogous to the predator-prey relationship. When a predator develops a new physical feature, such as quicker speed, it gains a distinct hunting advantage over the prey. Subsequently, the predator population devours a massive section of the prey population. Through natural selection, the prey survivors reproduce new features designed to protect them from predators, such as camouflage. This cyclical nature continues indefinitely, with either the predator or prey gaining the upper hand and the other side forced to adapt through natural selection.
This biological concept can be applied to the BC party scene. In the early ’90s, tailgates during football games were sloppy affairs, especially in the Mods. In response to these college students gone wild, the administration built fences around the Mods. Likewise, BC students adapt to restrictions on party activities. Although beer isn’t sold at Alumni Stadium, students overcome this potentially troublesome sobriety at pregames before kickoff. Each side reacts to the other’s evolution in a permanent cycle of rowdy partying and stern University restrictions.
In this context, the early start time for fall concerts makes sense. Two years ago, over three dozen students were removed for alcohol-related treatment at the J. Cole Fall Concert. From the administration’s perspective, this chaos created both a danger to the student body and an embarrassment to the University’s reputation. Their solution was a 5 p.m. start time on Friday for concerts. The combination of Friday classes and reduced pregaming hours helped curb alcohol related incidents at the Spring Concert.
There are many students who despise this concert curfew. They view it as a draconian restriction on the party culture at BC. My message to them is simple. The BC administration is in a permanently difficult position. They must educate, house, and entertain a massive student body, as well as raise money for and promote a prestigious University. Hordes of students vomiting in public places and passing out in Conte Forum bathrooms are unacceptable from a safety and public relations standpoint. The 5 p.m. concert start brings to mind the phrase “business, not personal,” used by Tom Hagen in The Godfather. The administration is not deliberately trying to eliminate partying or drinking at BC. They are instead attempting to keep a rambunctious student body in check during public events. Concerts will continue to start in the early evening for the foreseeable future. Get over it.
On the flip side is the conservative backlash to the party culture at BC. Some students, faculty, and off-campus neighbors who call the police multiple times on the Fourth of July to investigate 21-year-olds peacefully drinking in a backyard view parties as a stigma. To them, any drinking or loud music could lead to dire consequences and thus college parties and concerts should be discouraged. My message to them is as follows: We, the BC undergraduate community, are at a crossroads. In a few years we will be thrown into the unforgiving real world. Before that, we will seize the day. We will drink heavily on weekends and at tailgates. We will be loud while less interesting people are trying to sleep. We may even engage in the mortal sin of premarital sex. Sorry we’re not sorry for partying. Get over it.