March 5

At 9:15pm, I return home after a long day of reading a book and burning DVDs (the equipment is over in the university’s tech center, so I have to stay and babysit it). I decide to treat myself to a nice television show to unwind, but then I notice a message on the answering machine. “Aaron, I thought we had a date, dude. It’s Kai. Buzz me.” Oh man, I must have missed a meeting. I always do that on weekends. But, it’s odd, I don’t remember arranging a meeting with Kai. I check my calendar. Nothing. I check my email. Nothing. I call Kai. No answer. I check my email again. There is an evite for a Roosevelt party. I guess that’s what he wants me at. I imagine myself at a party… I decide to go back to watching TV. I don’t like people.

As soon as the TV show is over, the phone rings. I let the answering machine get it. It’s Kai — he says he got my message and told the group: “You should have heard the cheers. You gotta come over here.” I smile. Perhaps I can make an exception to my party rule just once. I start to get my shoes on. The phone rings again. I let the answering machine get it. As if to prove Kai’s previous statement, it’s a group of people shouting “Aaron” and hanging up. The phone rings a third time, I answer it and tell them I’m coming over. ‘Hurry, man.’

I get a little lost on the way there, yet I am stopped by several people who want to know where 680 is. I tell them I don’t know, but it seems pretty obvious it’s the building with the music and colored lights coming out of it at the end of the street. eventually, I find the Roosevelt party. Everyone is happy to see me.

I missed dinner, but I’m just in time for desert. I eventually have to concede that I don’t like chocolate. ‘You don’t like chocolate?’ ‘So you didn’t like my cookies?’ This always happens to me. Not liking chocolate just seems wrong to people, anti-American even. It’s like not liking sports. (I don’t like sports.) ‘Here, have some more wine. I don’t endorse underage drinking. It’s against the law — you can quote me on that. But I will approve if you drink.’ ‘You should be a politician.’

The girl who made the cookies starts interrogating me: favorite color, favorite novel, favorite hair color of the opposite sex, favorite sexual fantasy—‘You can’t ask him that! You have to wait until he’s drunk to ask him that!’ They pour me some more wine. The girl finally asks why I’m not asking her any questions. ‘I read what you said about me on your weblog — how you never think to ask people questions — don’t you think you’re doing that now?’

We’re cramped into some girl’s room, standing around a table with glasses in our hands. People occasionally make excuses to hug and touch each other, or just sort of brush against each other when maneuvering around the tight space; it’s nice. Pictures of Britney line the walls while various objects lie on the floor. Beatles music plays through the speakers. Five empty bottles of wine lie on the table — ‘I can’t believe we already drunk five bottles of wine. I want more wine!’ — along with a large bottle of liquor. Someone gets a bright idea and soon we’re pouring the jug of liquor down three flights into somebody else’s mouth.

The girl who read my weblog turns to me to explain the situation. ‘You see, what’s funny is that right now that guy is guy is supposed to be at a party in his honor, celebrating the fact that he’s graduating and going away this term, but right now he’s standing in the middle of a building getting liquor poured into his mouth from three flights up.’ I worry that the liquor might get in his eyes. He should wear goggles.

Eventually it’s decided that the fun here is exhausted and we should go to a real party, like the one at 680. The guys try on various articles of women’s clothing, just for fun, before changing back into their normal outfits. I decide that as long as I’m going to parties, I might as well go to a real one, so I tag along.

We approach the small building, music and colored light still pouring out its windows. You have to show Stanford ID at the door and a large campus security guard stands outside. Inside, it’s packed — you have to twist and turn to move through the crowd. Before we’ve even entered the other kids seem to notice friends and they hug and hug. Colored lights move across the walls and the music is even louder. To the right is a band, which plays the kind of music that They Might Be Giants would parody, and a little bar, filling cups with what I presume is beer. ‘Hey that’s [some name],’ someone says, as if pointing out a celebrity to me. I don’t recognize the name as any actor I know. (It does not occur to me that there is no reason an actor would be at a Stanford party.) ‘Who?’ I ask. ‘He’s the star forward on our basketball team.’

Eventually Kai tries to get me to dance, which I’m pretty wretched at. “I guess “I’m not drunk enough to do this,” I say. And so the night continues: dancing, squeezing through crowds, shouting into people’s ears over the loud music, and, most importantly, hugging. Not me of course, except for this one cute girl who seems to know who I am, and passes me several times, insisting on a hug each time. I wish I knew who she was.

Kai pressures me to dance some more, but I cowardly ditch him and hide in the crowd. And then, worrying that the hearing loss I’m experiencing might become permanent, I leave and head back to my room, where I write this entry, and then go to sleep.

posted March 26, 2005 05:19 PM (Education) (0 comments) #


Lessons in Capitalism #2: Management
Jeff Hawkins Update
Stanford: Another Post You Don’t Have to Read
Michael Scheuer on Imperial Hubris
Stanford: Unscripted
Stanford; Home Alone
Stanford: Private Meeting
Stanford Interactive: What classes should I take?


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