Blue Devil Nation,
As the year draws nigh, we must begin to realize that we will soon lose the Class of 2014. Yes, all the beloved seniors will have to venture forward into a world filled with uncertainty and unemployment. Because of this, I’d like to give a word to my aging brethren about the days that are ahead.
You’re screwed. Plain and simple. I mean, these were the best four years of your life. I hope you like depression, because the real world is full of it. You’re leaving Duke, which means you’re leaving a school filled with amazing people. Where else will you have a campus filled with people not only smarter than you, but also guaranteed to make sure you know they are smarter than you? A place where at any moment on any day you can be put on TV because of a race or sex scandal. And, in the real world, you have to eat real food. Yeah, that means no Penn Pavilion. You can start crying now. Also, no more construction, which means you won’t be gently awoken by the soothing sound of jackhammers destroying the small bits of the old Loop that remain.
And the screwing doesn’t stop regardless of whether or not you have a set plan. Let’s assume you have a job. You’re doomed to a life of steady paychecks, independence and casual Fridays. A life where day drunk isn’t an acceptable standard and sitting on your bench shirtless is more than frowned upon. And all of your parties are immediately transformed from ragers to light get-togethers where you invite the people and choose alcohol you like. That sounds miserable. Call me crazy, but what is a party without the forced mentality of copious amounts of bad beer and freshmen.
To those of you without a job, you are especially screwed. I mean, you went to a top ten school and didn’t get a job. Isn’t it assumed that every year a bunch of high level, high-paying jobs immediately have openings for the thousands of outgoing undergrads? And, with the nation’s amazing economic state, how could you not already have a job? Who has ever heard of a twenty-something that doesn’t have their whole life planned out? So you’ll probably have to move back in with your parents. Hope you like home cooked meals and a supportive family, because you’ll be seeing a lot of that.
And I didn’t forget about the graduate school kids. You may think you are signing up for years of high-quality education to rocket you to a stellar career, but you’re actually agreeing to being forced to vicariously enjoy college through the hundreds of students you TA. Every night, you’ll go to bars with your friends and just wish you were among the hordes of self-conscious undergrads. The undergrads that either are equipped with fake IDs or are sufficiently pregamed to enjoy a night of sweaty discomfort.
If you want a real wake-up call, think about alumni weekend. Last weekend, thousands of alumni flooded campus to reconnect with fellow alumni and see the state of the campus. In other words, they are all so overcome with grief about their steady jobs and families that they are allowed one brief glimmer of the past. Nothing is sadder than seeing a grown man take selfies with the Chapel. I mean, this is why Alumni Weekend is so close to graduation; so seniors can see the fate that awaits them in less than a month. To see that a Duke degree means four years and 363 days of monotony only disrupted by the little pulse of life that is a reunion with all of your best friends. All of your top thousand people in your life that have, of course, meant so much to you.
So what are your options? Well, leaning into discomfort and graduating with dignity seem to be out of the cards, so you’ll have to find a way to stay here. Now you’re down to two options. Set up shop in the bottom floor of the Bryan Center and hope no one finds you or try and fail out of all your classes and tack on another year. Sorry, Class of 2014, but you’re screwed. You’re about to become Duke Alumni and those people never become successful. Am I Right or am I right?
Next semester Right Wing will be the executive producer of Belle Knox’s reality show.