It’s that time of year again. Back to school time. The warm Santa Barbara air is getting crisp, baby-faced freshmen are moving into the dorms, and I have yet to find my board shorts from last quarter. Even as first-year college students unpack their stuff and settle into life as an adult, I still don’t have my totally rad pair of Hurleys that I bought from Pacsun on discount (even though you could never tell that just by looking at them). It’s a beautifully sad thing seeing parents drop off their last child at college and then driving away crying as they realize that they’re going to be empty nesters for the first time in 20 years. It’s an equally sad thing to realize I haven’t had those board shorts since last year when I lost them in one of the dorm laundry rooms.
I have two main pieces of advice for any lost or anxious freshman.
One) – Put yourself out there. You never know what kind of awesome people you might meet. Trust me, it’s worth it.
Two) – Find my board shorts and bring them to me. I need them for swimming and various other moist activities.
And also 3) – Do NOT trust the small laundry doers. I know they seem helpful and cute at first, but eventually they will take your favorite pair of wet-pants and you will be left with nothing but a broken promise and one less miniscule friend.
Living on the ocean for the first time is an incredible experience. It’s hard to describe. It’s just like the time when I saw a man rush out through the exit door right after I realized that I didn’t have any water-trousers. I wish I had gotten a better look at him but he was five foot two and a darn quick athlete. His agility and overall build suggested to me that he was probably a tiny Olympian, or maybe an opportunistic elf.
Dorm life is just crazy. To be totally honest, you will never have this much fun again in your life. But after first quarter you’re going to have to wake up and realize that you are 18 years old now and not looking for my swimsuit is selfish and immature behavior.
To all UCSB first-years: this is the time of your life. To all UCSB laundry gnomes: please return my water boxers. You do not understand how memorable this year will be, nor do you understand how much I need those shorts. It is true what they say: College is a time for fun, novel experiences. It is a time of growth, a time of rebirth, a time of new beginnings, old endings and aging middles. So relax, take a deep breath, and please find my swim trunks for me.
A Semi-Naked Man
When did college apartments become nicer than our parents’ houses?