The real world terrifies me. No, not the reality TV show — in fact, if I were to be on “The Real World” for the next 12 months, I would have eight more months planned out than I have right now. As a high school senior, I was itching to graduate and catapult into independence. But the pseudo-real world that I had been dying to experience as an 18-year-old is now coming to an end.
I’m not sure if I can capture it as articulately as Asher Roth did, but I love college. So, to delay my post-graduation experience — literally, since I’m writing this rather than perusing an updated list of job postings — I thought about all the things we can do at Emory that we most likely can’t get away with once that diploma is forced into our hands.
Take a 3 a.m. Wa-Ho trip: Whether it’s the last stop on a weekend night out or a study break, late-night trips to Waffle House are a staple among Emory students. There’s just something magical about stocking up on your daily sodium and fat intake with chocolate chip waffles and hash browns, smothered and covered, at 3 a.m.
Drink bad beer and wine without being judged: Being on a college-student budget means we all have a mutual understanding that sometimes, bad beer and wine happen. PBR pitchers at $3.25, Two Buck Chucks, Natty Lights? Done, done and done.
Wear tights as pants: Sorry, girls, but this is generally frowned upon outside of Emory.
Be indecisive about the future: Flip-flopping between majors is called exploring your options and finding yourself. Jumping around jobs in your late 20s is called being aimless.
Try, err and try again: One of my favorite things about college is that it’s OK to make mistakes. If you overestimate your ability to pass a difficult class in freshman year, then you can use your free pass to drop it without hurting your GPA. Your parents may be upset if you mismanage your money, but you won’t go bankrupt for maxing out your Dooley Dollars. It’s a low-risk environment where you can figure out what your strengths are, and build on them.
Michelle Ye Hee Lee is a College senior from Tamuning, Guam. She was editor in chief of the Emory Wheel.