A short one this week.
I’ve been on campus for exactly two months and I’ve already noticed plenty of things that make UIC students unique. Because of our culture here, there are certain behaviors we’re susceptible to, and certain moments we’ll experience that mean more to us than most people. It actually inspired me to write a few of them down. These aren’t exactly “must-do’s,” but I hope you’ll get a few laughs reading down the list and realizing you’ve already accomplished/suffered through a few!
The quintessential moments that make you feel you’re part of the UIC community:
- Make a new friend by bonding over mutual hatred of the cold.
- Skip your earliest class to stay in bed, because it’s -10 degrees out, and for some reason, classes aren’t canceled.
- Advise an underclassmen not to bother with UIC transit.
- Make the begrudging journey to West Campus, only to find the faculty member you were supposed to meet isn’t in today.
- You had to think for a second when your out-of-state friend asked what your school’s mascot is.
- Attend an event solely for the free pizza it advertised, and end up having a pretty good evening.
- Replace “Jewel,” “Dominick’s,” “Aldi,” and/or “Whole Foods” in your vocabulary with “Mariano’s.”
- You know where all the best museums are, what special exhibits they have, and how much it’ll cost you to go. But you’re way too busy to visit.
- At least one of your classes is vaguely related to health science, regardless of your major.
- When you get asked by a stranger to watch his stuff while he goes to the bathroom, you realize for a second how easy it would be to just make off with everything and never see him again… But you have morals. And anyway, you don’t want to get up.
And a few for my fellow commuters:
- You have an up-to-date mental map of microwaves on campus.
- You plan your days around the CTA, which means your days are incredibly hard to plan.
- You know where all the quietest places are to nap in the library.
- You’re so used to morning and evening commuter traffic, you get unreasonably annoyed when people ask “obvious” questions, like “How much is a round-trip ticket?” or, “How do I get to the CTA?”
- Your walking pace has become acclimatized to commuter foot traffic; your speed-walking would make the Flash look like a freshman!
- You have a network of friends who let you sleep in their dorm a few nights a week.
- You’ve got a travel mug of coffee, your water bottle, phone charger, laptop charger, two meals worth of food, chap-stick, hand sanitizer, and possibly a change of clothes in your backpack right now.
- You’ve never actually been to the Commuting Student Resource center.
This is by no means a complete list; please comment and add your thoughts and experiences! I’d love to see enough to warrant a second edition of The UIC Bucket List.