Fans of The Bachelor and its many spinoffs will be delighted to hear that the reality dating show is has made way to the University of South Carolina campus. On Wednesday, USC Parking Services Attendant Ryan O’Connell created a blockade of traffic cones preventing students from using a coveted parking space near the intersection of Greene and Pickens.
O’Connell then gathered a group of 25 male and female students and instructed them to engage in several activities, including a country-themed karaoke show, a pretend wedding planning event, and an obstacle course where contestants had to duck and weave between the horde of students transitioning to their next class while simultaneously avoiding tripping on any potholes.
A student’s eligibility for semester-long use of the parking space would be determined by winning the competition. Eliminations occurred after each event, with O’Connell passing out several orange traffic cones to signal that a contestant would move on to the next round.
O’Connell made it abundantly clear that he did not instigate the competition for romantic purposes but rather that he, “really happens to be a fan of the show, and has to do something to kill time in the gap between episodes.”
“Honestly I’m just like, so happy to be here. Like I really believe in this process, and I think if I can make it to the one-on-one date round I can totally show that me and Honda CRV belong in that space together,” said junior Helen Irving.
Everything in the space was not all heart eyes and romance. At one point two male students nearly came to blows after a contestant was accused of only participating in the contest for access to the parking space.
“You don’t even care about Ryan, man. You don’t even know him, you’re just in it for the space! Like, I don’t want to have to physically fight you but if I need to, I will physically fight you,” yelled sophomore contestant Alex Amherst, grabbing a pad of parking tickets and smacking his rival over the head.
After eight hours of high stakes dating competition, the final traffic cone was awarded to senior Gracie Hart.
“I missed all of my classes today, but who cares! I won the parking space! I mean…found love. I’ve got to go call my mom, she’s going to be so proud!”