“Do everything you say you are going to do” is definitely a motto I try to live by. When I said last week that I was going to talk to new people, I took that seriously –maybe a little too seriously.
First, I attended The Saint Ball. I went with a small group of friends; I knew less than ten people going, which is essentially like knowing no one in St. Andrews. I hoped that at a ball organized by a newspaper I might meet another writer, and we would have an inspired connection. Instead, I met a lot of first years who asked me, “Are you a first year?”. Last week, I said, “No, I am a fourth year.”
This week, I said, “Kind of.” The responses were much more positive. However, I felt guilty- pretending to be some innocent first year who doesn’t know how the males of St. Andrews operate. But, also, why did they keep asking me if I was a first year? It is like asking a woman upon first meeting her, “Hey, how old are you?”.
As a first year, I don’t remember ever asking boys if they were a first year. I guess it is the status quo idea of men dating younger women, and women dating older men. I have dated men from three years younger to seven years older. For me, it is not about maturity, but the belief that this person might actually be able to understand me in the way I want to be understood. To quote ‘Love Poem’ by Denise Levertov,
“certainly, there is a
mist between us
I can barely
but your hands
are two animals that push the
mist aside and touch me.”
Some people can see beyond the mist, and some people can’t.
Second, I started a new game. The Pick-Someone-and-I-Will-Talk-to-Them Game is an absolute blast. If the name doesn’t explain the rules, then I don’t know what will. I met a lot of new people playing this game. Although, after we’d exchanged names and come to the conclusion that I was ‘kind of’ a first year, I did not know where this conversation was supposed to go. Was I supposed to ask about their studies, where they were from, their passions, their relationship with their mother? Probably. Did I? Nope. I would excuse myself to go back to my friends who were watching, and laughing.
Third, I started volunteering at the Hill of Tarvit, an Edwardian mansion near Cupar. Working as a tour guide, I have met a lot of lovely elderly ladies who have shared with me the interesting history of Frederick Sharp and his impressive collections. I have also met a lot of couples visiting the house. It has been so lovely to meet these people, united by a love of history – rather than over a drink at the Union.
Fourth, I started going to Shimmy Society classes – Zumba and Burlesque. I’ve always known about the society, and I’ve been on the emailing list for a few years, but the Burlesque class really caught my eye. I have always been fascinated by pasties, and this summer I bought a pink snake-skin pair. The history of pasties originates with Burlesque dancers, and thus I wanted to learn about them, to experience them in their natural habitat. It has only been the first class, but I have met a lot of nice people, and learned a lot of sexy dance moves.
I’ve been new people’d out this week. I will keep it up, but I think I will stop pretending I am in first year. What kind of bullshit is “kind of”? I am a fourth year, and I am proud. I have one more year until the real world, and until then, I will keep exploring.
Once I graduate, I basically know myself perfectly and my whole life will work out, right? Because that’s what I am supposed to figure out at University, right? Right?
Oh well. It’s just going to be one big crazy time until we die.
Featured Image: Ilaria Maresi
Originally published on The Tribe.