From an introvert: There’s no ‘right way’ to do college

It’s 8 p.m. on a Friday, my freshman year of college, and a text lights up my phone. “Are you going out tonight?” For most students this is a normal text. However, most students don’t get this weekly text from their mother who lives 800 miles away. What’s stranger were the texts that followed. More often than not, I told my mom I was planning on just watching a movie by myself and going to bed, and she would beg me to go out. (I should clarify that my mom was not some helicopter parent trying to live vicariously through her daughter; she was just a extrovert mother concerned with the hermit-esqe tendencies of her introvert daughter). People try to challenge me when I tell them I’m an introvert. They point out that I perform in an improv group, have an eccentric personality (to put it delicately) and that if it weren’t for people interrupting me, I could probably talk for hours. All of this is true. I am wicked shy in unfamiliar social settings, though, take a long time to get comfortable around new people (we’re talking months) and love nothing more than spending time by myself. It’s kind of like Jekyll and Hyde, if Jekyll and Hyde were an insecure 18-year-old girl. During my freshman year, it was hard not to log onto social media and see...

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I shouldn’t have to tell you that women are funny

“I honestly just don’t find women to be funny.” My best friend said this to me over the summer while we were practicing improv with a group of people I respect and admire. He said it while looking me directly in the eye. I was the only woman in the room. The worst part about this was my friend wasn’t trying to be offensive or hurtful. He was just stating an opinion he has heard repeated by so many others.   As a woman who devotes a big chunk of her life to practicing and studying comedy, I find this idea exhausting and frustrating. The rebuttal I gave him then is the same I would like to explain now. It is understandable to find men’s humor more relatable if you are a man, and women’s humor more relatable if you are a woman. In fact, it’s totally fine! I oftentimes find myself laughing harder at women’s humor because they speak toward experiences I’ve had, and they experience the world from a viewpoint similar to my own. It doesn’t mean I don’t think men are funny. It just means I find women’s humor more relatable. I’m not saying that all women are funny. Some aren’t, just like not all men are funny. But making a sweeping generalization about an entire gender, and placing their talents below another, is wrong. Saying...

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Greek or not, it’s none of your business

“You don’t seem like the type of girl who would be in a sorority.” This is often the response I get when I tell people I am in a sorority, and I hate it. I’m never sure if I’m supposed to take it as a compliment or an insult. Am I supposed to say “thank you?” Am I supposed to be flattered that I don’t fit the stereotype someone has in their head of the typical sorority girl, or am I supposed to be offended for the same reason? I get particularly mad when I hear this comment from other women because, regardless of the subtext, this comment is scratching at the surface of a much bigger issue. Some women believe sororities are anti-feminist, and that’s fine. What’s not fine is when those women look down on and mock those who are in a sorority. On the flip side, there are some women in sororities who think that being a member of a sorority somehow places them above women who are not. Both viewpoints piss me off. Before I go any further, let me just say that I understand sororities are flawed and have some misogynistic practices, like dress codes and color schemes for chapter events. And yes, some sororities judge women on looks before personality and values. However, those are the vast minority. Personally, I joined Greek life...

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Music and the comedic beast

“It’s still going to be good,” I heard a familiar voice say from behind me. I turned and saw the teal curtains rippling where the voice’s source had just passed through. The students to my left had wide eyes and nervous smiles as if they had just seen a ghost — or a God. An older gentleman peered over the silver rims of his glasses and gestured toward the opposite end of the stage. I followed his gaze over to where the band was set up. “Mr. O’Brien is in the building.”  Conan O’Brien stood with his back to us. His foot rested on the stair to help balance the electric guitar in his hands. He began plucking out a song, the notes echoing out of speakers onto the mostly empty stage. “Music tames the savage beast,” Conan’s stage manager, Steve Hollander, explained to the group of us watching in awe. Our group moved into the audience and I sat myself in a corner seat with the best view of him. He wore black slacks, a polka-dot tie, sneakers and a brown dress-shirt underneath a leather jacket. The only hint of color came from the messy crop of red hair that flopped over his forehead. He was effortlessly cool. Watching him in that moment felt almost invasive. Like I was peeking through the windows of a trailer, spying on...

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