Life & Other Drugs, On "The Hill"

Dear Seniors, Please Don’t Leave

April 30, 2017

As this semester wraps up, many of us on campus are getting ready to say goodbye to the Class of 2017, which sounds like fake news if we’re being honest, because 2017 sounds like a fake year. 2010? That sounds more real. That’s more like it. I’m not sure why I feel this way, but I honestly believe that Justin Bieber’s “Baby” came out yesterday. Why the release of that one song seems to have frozen time for me I don’t know, but it doesn’t change the fact that I genuinely feel like anything that has happened after the Biebs bowl cut epidemic has either happened a) way too fast to actually be real or b) as part of one of those very weird, long, too-vivid dreams I used to have in middle school.

BUT, if I learned anything from 2016, it’s that this is all, somehow, real (!!!!!). It’s actually happening. Our friends are going off to grad school. They’re finding apartments. They’re getting jobs. They are moving cross country, or abroad, or even staying in Providence, (but getting the hell outta here, they say).

To this I say: how… fucking… dare you?

And I say this because I am furious. And no, it’s not because I’ll miss you. (Though I will). Mostly, I’m angry because what are we supposed to do now? What am I supposed to do now? Because, newsflash, the seniors leaving isn’t about the seniors at all– it’s about us, the people who they are leaving behind. Especially soon-to-be seniors, like yours truly.

Don’t get me wrong. I am kind of excited for senior year. But I can already tell that it’s going to be both great and awful at the same time. Perks? Living off-campus, for one, so that I don’t have to deal with noisy neighbors and, even more importantly, a cappella groups. Disadvantages? HBO, which all Brown students now have, is only for people living on campus. So to answer your question, yes, I highly considered giving up my off-campus permission because I love Game of Thrones, Insecure, and Veep. But, also I hate a cappella. So, priorities.

Granted, priorities are one of the many reasons being a senior is going to be amazing. The elders get priority! We’ll finally get first pick for a bunch of things, most notably, capped classes. But then again– what does that matter? Aren’t we all taking classes like Ghanaian drumming and Public Speaking anyway?

Plus, as an “old,” we will never really feel intimidated by anyone. And from what I have witnessed and gathered, we will also stop caring about what we look like when we head to class.

Actually we’ll just stop caring about class. And work. And productivity and ethical consumption under capitalism.

And we’ll care about other stuff we never really cared about before. Like, finding time for our “real friends” instead of party hopping. Or staying in on weekends with our housemates, because we’ve realized we’ll never see them again see them mostly at weddings or reunions.

Maybe we’ll discover there is someone we wish we had gotten to know better. We’ll even senior scramble. We’ll think about all the things we wish we would have done, and remember the things we said we don’t regret but kind of do, and suddenly it will register that we already had our last snow day at Brown, and one last Ratty lunch, and we’ll wonder if we really took it all in before everyone is off on their next adventure.

Isn’t that just a little depressing?

I don’t want to go to there! I want to stay a junior forever! (Lol, depending on finals, I just might!) I desperately want to keep feeling older than the other munchkin freshmen/sophomores, all while knowing I still have a whole year of fuckery ahead. I looooove knowing that I’m part of the age group where I can go to the GCB and see ~some people in my class, but mostly, I just see seniors who I’ve admired from afar and who are willing to buy me overpriced popcorn in one last attempt at flirting with a stranger.

I looooove using “but you’re leaving me!” as an excuse to make plans with cool seniors while I ditch underclassmen under the pretense of “but we still have time!”

And I especially like sharing stories with these geriatrics all these old timey tales that make us both feel special. I’ll bring up some whacky story that happened to me my freshman year and they will stare at me with a look in their eyes, like the one your grandpa gets when he speaks of The War. The Gate? I haven’t heard that name in years…

Ah, Seniors. Who is going to fill your pretentious hipstery shoes? Certainly not me. That’s just too much work. And while I certainly like power, being the “wise one”/the person others look up to? No thanks. That’s a lot of pressure, and I’d like to keep being able to fuck up constantly and consistently forever, thank you very much.

In any case, I’m also just not cool enough to be a senior. I can’t be the senior who is a chill recovering scene kid with an edgy nose ring and also plays ultimate frisbee. I can’t be the senior who pulls off the “granny-toddler” look on one hand and pulls off hooking up with a guy she’s literally bled on (nosebleed blood, for clarification) on the other. And I definitely can’t be the senior who can look hot AF dressed like Marty freakin’ McFly and who once piqued my interest with her heart-shaped manic pixie dream mole.

When I’m a senior, all I’ll have to my name will be like, oh Daniella, the one who wears a superfluous amount of beanies and flannels and is obsessed with going to concerts and also, her Congressman?

I guess what I’m trying to say is –as with most things– perhaps best said with a Queen B lyric. You’re irreplaceable, seniors. What can I say to make you stay? Hmm… Real world? Rent? Student loan refinance plan? DONATE TO THE BROWN ANNUAL FUND? IN THE REAL WORLD, IT’S ACTUALLY KIND OF DIFFICULT TO FIND MOZZ STICKS?

Hit me up if any of these worked ‘cuz then maybe someone can use them on me next year. Because ya girl is planning on straight up denying the inevitable passage of time until the fat blue lamp/bear sings.

Image via Sarah Clapp.

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