Sherman Ave Freshman Guide: How to Party Like a Wildcat
NOTE: According to the Illinois Liquor Control Act of 1934, no person under the age of 21 years old may purchase, drink or possess any alcoholic beverage. Therefore, I would like to ask anyone under 21 years of age to stop reading this post and go back to watching Dora the Explorer or whatever the fuck you children do. I would also like to point out that while this post is intended for incoming freshman, I am assuming that the vast majority of freshman took three consecutive gap-years (The Gapfecta) and are currently 21. Now then. Care to Party Rock?
You see, every year hordes of freshman pour into the finest learning establishment in Cook County’s northern suburbs, ready for a land called “college.” They enter expecting a place where the booze runs freely and the parties rage continuously. In short, they’ve likely visited their friends at the University of Iowa sometime over the last six weeks.
But no amount of college visits can quite prepare you for the rage-a-thon that is Wildcat Welcome Week.
In their infinite wisdom, the Wildcat Welcome Board of Directors (my friend request has been denied by them twice, btwz) created a week before school starts during which all freshman and a healthy number of upper classmen are on campus with no class, no homework, and nearly no expectation of sobriety. This is the week when you will learn how to party right. But you want to be prepared before this all begins so you can be “the one other normal kid in my PA group” when others are talking about you. For that reason, LISTEN UP MAH FRESHMAN BITCHEZZZ. Here’s some crucial knowledge to use responsibly when raging at Northwestern:
FINDING A PARTY Perhaps the biggest shock to incoming freshman is that sometimes you will have to search for the party. Very rarely is it in the dorm across the hall from you. And, if it is, if you were wanted you probably would have been invited.
Unfortunately, Welcome Week is included in the heinous “Freshman Freeze”. The Freshman Freeze is a policy at NU whereby no freshmen are allowed in any on-campus fraternity house for the first three weeks after move-in. While the Freshman Freeze has been called the biggest infringement on the rights of Drunk-Americans since the infamous Illinois Liquor Control Act of 1934, penalties can be harsh for houses that violate it and many frats adhere to the rules in this case fairly strictly.
Don’t worry, however, because most frats have some sort of off-campus house where the seniors live and the ragers happen during the first few weeks. You’ll learn these locations all too well over time (Fridge, you’ve made it impossible for me to go to the refrigerator in my house without giggling about my Dillo Day shenanigans) and quickly be accustomed to the lengthy walk.
Odds are, unless you have an extraordinarily cool and gutsy PA, you won’t know where the parties are your first night or two. Try asking your friends who live in Bobb or anywhere up north; they often get clued in on these things first. If that fails but you’re still jonesing for some alkeehall, you can always just get a small group and wander off into the nearby residential area. You’ll likely run into other groups and you can ask where they’re headed. Many good discussion section bonds have been formed this way.
Getting into the party
While this is less common during Welcome Week than the rest of the year, there is often a brother at the door of a fraternity house (on campus or off) who will ask you if you know anyone in the house to see if he should let you in. There are basically two schools of thought here. If it’s during Welcome Week, you probably won’t know anyone, the guy will probably expect that and he’ll let you in anyway, so just tell him you don’t. Or, if you heard a group in front of you get in with a name, give that a shot (Or any common name. There are plenty of Brads in the NU Greek system).
One way to up your odds of getting in is to come with more girls than guys, because -- as you’ll quickly find -- breaking stereotypes is not all that high up on the list of importance to the NU social scene. In a separate but related point: put said girls up at the front of the group so the doorman doesn’t have to look too far to spot cleavage. That can be soooo tiring for him.
Deciding what to drink Once you’re in the party you’ll likely have an array of options. During Welcome Week there will be more than a few keggers, and while learning how to pour to minimize foam and bonding with your peers around a massive metal container of an inebriating substance is a lot of fun, you might find the wait excessive and wish to head to another alcohol source. There will probably be a few cases or bins full of crappy beer. Pounce on dat shit. Many parties will also have a limited bar where you can go take awesome shooters with your awesome friends. Some will even have soda (….or pop? Anyone? ANYONE?!) to mix with your hard liquor if you have no testicles.
But often the most appealing -- and most dangerous -- choice is the Jungle Juice. Jungle Juice is a concoction that usually contains some combination of soda (…or fountain drink? Anyone? 1950’s?! ANYONE?!?), fruit juice, hard alcohol, grain alcohol and sugar. And although “this totally doesn’t even taste like there’s like any alcohol in here guys!!!!!!!” just a glass or two of Jungle Juice can really get a future sorostitute drunk. Girls will want to be careful with this stuff as it can very quickly get them fucked before they realize what’s going on. Much like Levi Johnston, we’d assume.
Finally, you may stumble onto a party that has some sort of terrible, boxed wine. This is what we here at Sherman Ave like to call a “fresh” situation. Basically, wine is easy to drink, quick to get you drunk, and you get to feel like you’re still classy as you stumble down Sheridan Road. It’s the best of all worlds!
What to do at the party Uhhhh, idk. Get drunk and stuff? Make terrible life choices? Eye-bang the girl from your Gender Studies class? Just do whatever the hell drunken idiots have been doing for millenniums.
If, however, you choose not to imbibe, I will treat this topic with a little more seriousness. Many Northwestern students do not drink and they will report they have plenty of fun anyway. Being sober at a party can be quite delightful as you are afforded the opportunity to watch the normally coherent future business leaders of the world get mad sloppy on the dance floor. Or, some other sober sisters and brothers have found they get a bit of a contact drunk off everyone else. I’ve been told it’s quite nice. Too afraid to try that stuff myself, though. I prefer a nice SoCo drunk instead.
And on a final note, it is also worth… noting? (shit. I didn’t plan this sentence very well. Fuck it, it’s 1 a.m., ok? You coherence demanding assholes. You’re not better than me!... Wait… I’m sorry. I love you guys. Best readers in the world. When we get to campus, awesome shooters for everyone!) that this is mainly a review of frat parties at NU. This is because Greek life is in many ways the center of the Northwestern party scene. For information on bars, head over here. There are, however, a good number of apartment parties as well. If it’s a small thing and you know the person hosting, you should be fine acting as you normally do. If it’s a larger party, the same rules apply as for frat parties but you may be asked to chip in for the beer as well. Don’t be a dick, do it. What would Morty think of a freeloading freshman? I’ll tell you what he’d think. He wouldn’t be angry, just disappointed. And pretty angry.
So that should be all you need to know to have a rage-tastic week. I would, however, encourage incoming freshies not to attend any Welcome Week activities drunk. This can quickly lead to unfortunate labels such as “that puking kid” and “no, I don’t want to dance there’s not even any music playing you freak” being applied to you.