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Let’s all get wasted and avoid reality
Posted March 02, 2007

Jillian Peña
Editorial Director

What is it with college? Is there some unwritten rule that says college students all must become raging alcoholics in order to have the “full” college experience?

“College will be the best years of your life.” Really though, how many times have you heard that? Why should college be the best years of my life? If these are the best then why do anything else? We should all become the new Van Wilders of the world if that’s the case. We might as well ride out the college experience and make it last as long as possible.

Why even graduate? Let’s all hang out here!

Well, I don’t know about the rest of you, but I am ready to get out of here. I am so ready to see what else the world has to offer me. Not that I don’t love La Verne and not that I haven’t had a good time in college, I just feel like there are bigger and better things waiting for me.

Maybe I am the strange one. Maybe I grew up too early or maybe I just skipped that phase in my life where being drunk everyday is priority.

We all know that one guy, who everyone swears is 85 (pardon my exaggeration, but you get the point) and he still lives in the dorms and parties every night. Or the other guy who went off to grad school to make something of himself, but for some reason you see him on campus every weekend partying it up with the freshman. Or the chick who gets drunk at every party and uses it as an excuse to make out with anyone with a penis.

I always just laughed it off. These people are afraid of growing up. They’re afraid of the big bad working world. I feel sorry for them. They drowned their fears in their alcohol and partying, instead of attempting to over come them.

I thought these were individual cases, but the longer I’m in school I have begun to see this pattern emerging everywhere. What scares me the most is that it has started happening to the people I love.

As I get older and graduation is approaching quickly, I am excited to see what the world has to offer me. But for some of my friends it seems to be quite the opposite. I have started to see striking similarities to the 85-year-old, the wasted grad student and the skanky lady.

Hospital trips and nights spent in the bathroom vomiting are slowly becoming routine for their lives. There is nothing I can do but sit back and watch it happen.

I have tried to talk to them, I have tried to say something that will change their behavior and instead of results I have just been pushed out of their lives. They would rather hang out with all the others who are trying to avoid reality as well.

There is nothing wrong with having a good time. In fact, there is nothing wrong with drinking. I’m not saying that I have never touched the stuff. I have had my fun, but there is a problem when you do it in excess. There is a problem when you have to be drunk to enjoy yourself.

Why does everyone feel that is absolutely necessary to have at least three beers in their system before they can have a good time? The last time I checked hanging out with your friends should not require a tall can.
Whatever happened to just hanging out, laughing so hard your side hurts or just watching a movie?

As for my friends, I miss the ones I have lost to alcohol but I cherish the relationships I have now. I’m glad I grew up a little early, now I’ll have more memories that I can remember clearly and less that are lost in the fog of a hangover.

Jillian Peña, a sophomore communications major, is editorial director of the Campus Times. She can be reached by e-mail at jpena2@ulv.edu.