According to a new research study conducted over the past twelve years by super-super-super-super-super-super-super-super-super-super-super senior Dave Eaton, 34, any sort of behavior that might otherwise constitute alcohol abuse in virtually any other circumstance “totally doesn’t count in college, dude.” Whether it’s tailgating a football game at 10 a.m. with shots of Jack or sneaking sips of absinthe out of a hidden flask to alleviate the shaky hands and nausea brought on by alcohol withdrawals, Eaton claims this behavior “is just what you do in college, you know?”
Eaton, who has failed all of his classes as well as multiple sobriety tests over the past 14 years, did not find any correlation between his poor academic performance and his drinking habits. “Sometimes you’re a little too hungover to make it to your 2 p.m. class, it happens” said Eaton. “And sometimes that happens for, like, 14 years in a row. It’s whatever.” When questioned further, Eaton explicated, “You know, GPA doesn’t really matter. College is just the best two decades of your life.”
Josh Wade, Eaton’s former fraternity brother who has a stable job at a consulting firm and is expecting his second child with his wife, Melanie, recently reunited with Eaton. “Jesus. I invited the guy out for drinks at a pub a few weeks ago, and he wanted to shotgun our beers,” Wade said. “I’m a father now, I drink beer for the taste. Besides, we were drinking Stellas—out of glasses. I thought he had a problem.” But just as Wade was about to confront Eaton about his habits, Eaton, as part of his field psychology, mentioned he was “so totally fucked” for his upcoming midterms but was still planning on going out the night before his exams anyways. Upon learning that twelve years and a half-million dollars later his former classmate still had not earned enough credits for a degree, Wade commented “God that was a relief. He’s just living out his wild college years” with a chuckle and a shake of his head. As his smile faded, however, a far-off look appeared in Wade's eyes. He wondered if it was too late to go back to those college days; leave Melanie and the kids, pack up the car, and drive until he came to a small town in Texas where no one knew his name or his story, just that he needed a warm Natty Light.
According to Eaton’s research, drinking games are an essential part of the college canon, used for diffusing awkward tension in social settings, forging friendships, and as an excuse to drink excessively. “You got King’s Cup, you got Flip Cup, you got Slap Cup,” Eaton explained, as well as less-structured, individual drinking games such as “Take a shot every time you are reminded of your own mortality and using alcohol to drown out anxieties over the inevitability of one’s death and demise into oblivion is your only coping mechanism.”
Despite the occasional blackout or total failure of his liver, Eaton is not worried about his drinking habits. “I’ll grow out of it once I graduate,” Eaton said a little too defensively.
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