Princeton Hazes Freshmen
When I was pledging my sorority Freshman year – for 10 freaking weeks – all I could think about was the day it would all end; I would be a full-fledged member of the house and I wouldn’t have to get the older girls ice cream at 3am, carry cigarettes around for them just in case they might need one while they were out on campus, or have to sleep on the floor of a very cold sorority house every weekend. I was absolutely miserable, but I always knew that there was a bright light at the end of the tunnel (read: date parties and a private cook!) and it would all be worth it in the end.
It may seem crazy to put yourself through hell to join a group, but there is a purpose to pledge term: group bonding and appreciation as you work towards something. I worked hard with my pledge class to succeed at many (mostly ridiculous) tasks, which eventually ended with a very large and exciting payoff.
Payoff being the operative word. Because why else would someone slave away like a dog for weeks without any sort of payoff – unless, of course, they were into all that S&M shit?
Maybe we should ask the people over at Princeton. One of the residential colleges over there recently started a new “program” (service, really) for seniors working on their theses. Obviously, writing a thesis is super duper hard (which is why I decided not to do one, naturally) so someone thought it would be a great idea to offer those thesis-ites a little help.
In the way of freshman.
Doing random crap for them.
“Each participating Whitman senior will be assigned 2 underclassmen who will be “on call” during the final thesis push. If you are working away in your room and feel like you need a midnight snack all you have to do is contact your thesis buddy and he/she will bring you a hot dog and a red bull or whatever else you need to burn the midnight oil.”
Obviously, the idea isn’t to take advantage of your buddy, but to have him or her help out in a pinch. Other examples of acceptable duties include: taking care of a load of laundry, picking up/dropping off some library books, or proofreading a chapter for typos.
I know I am not alone in wondering why anyone would want to do this. What does the freshman get out of this? Gratification? Um, can I take gratification to the mall and put it towards a new pair of jeans? I don’t think so. And, no, I am not a total bitch who doesn’t find it nice to help someone in need, but shouldn’t the people in charge offer their freshman to more noble causes like feeding the hungry or ending the world AIDs epidemic? Do these privileged Princeton seniors really need someone to bring ‘em a Red Bull?
I don’t know about you, but I will not do anyone’s laundry if there is nothing in it for me. The only reason I do my own is because I have learned it is not appropriate to go anywhere without undies on. We will just have to wait and see how this university-sponsored hazing program turns out.
Good luck, freshmen; welcome to hell.