Have you ever realized that certain scenarios occur over and over again in your life here at Boston College? Or maybe they don’t happen to you, but you’ve seen other poor souls fall victim and you pray each and every day that you can remain unscathed. These are the unnamed BC phenomena. They are facts of life here at BC; those situations that have no name yet recur all the time on campus. Read through the list and find out that you’re not alone in the daily struggle.
1. Looking for your friends at Hillside
There are very few things worse than walking alone into the small Hillside café and not immediately seeing your friends. Maybe they’re running late, or maybe you just can’t find them amongst the tables. Either way, you’re left awkwardly standing alone in the middle of the room while everyone stares at you with a mix of confusion and pity. You feel yourself begin to sweat as your eyes frantically scan the tables. The room will seem to shrink around you. You might even feel the urge to shout, “I’m meeting my friends here I promise!” Refrain from doing so at all costs. When you do eventually find your friends, just shake that panic off and strut over to their table like you knew they were there all along.
2. Anxiety in any single person bathrooms on campus when someone knocks
One would think that being in a single person bathroom, like the one on the main floor of O’Neil, would be a wonderful change from the dorm style rows we are all used to. However, there is always the fear that someone will knock on the door while you are using the facilities. This is a painfully awkward situation because there is really no response that exists which won’t make everyone involved uncomfortable. “Hold on,” “Someone’s in here,” and “One minute” all will leave you cringing and crossing your fingers that, by some miracle, when you leave the bathroom that person won’t be standing outside. And if you don’t respond, you run the risk that they will continue to knock or worse, break down the door.
3. Opening a computer in class or library and not knowing what will pop up on the screen or play out of the speakers
This is a very real fear for those of us who are often too lazy or forgetful to exit out all of our programs or tabs when we close our computer and stow it for later. Suddenly you will find yourself in class surrounded by people who can see your screen and whoever’s Facebook page you were last stalking and neglected to exit out of. Even worse is opening your laptop in Bapst only to have your private collection of Britney Spears jams start blasting at top volume. Cue the awkward laugh as you slam the screen closed and evacuate as quickly as possible.
4. Fear of tripping on any of the many staircases on campus
BC has way too many stairs. This is a fact. It’s almost like BC is setting you up for a dose of daily embarrassment because even if you somehow manage to avoid tripping, you’ll still be panting by the time you get to the top (unless you are a D1 athlete in which case you probably aren’t human). I have lost count of the amount of times I have publically tripped on BC staircases. There is no way to gracefully recover from this kind of humiliation. Half of the people around you will inevitably start laughing while the other half will ask you if you are okay while trying to suppress their laughter. What you want to happen next: you stand up looking even better than before you fell, smile at everyone and just walk away. What actually happens next: you mumble, “Yea I’m fine” and bolt without looking back.
5. Wanting to sing in the shower but being afraid someone will walk in
This is a daily struggle for those of us who are not blessed with Beyoncé’s vocal talent but still have her passion for loud and sassy singing. Unlike at home, you do not have a bathroom to yourself for a full hour shower concert. When you do get lucky enough to be alone in the bathroom, it’s still risky business to start singing because someone could walk in at any moment and hear you. In my experience, I will usually sing softly and get louder as I get more confident. Then, just as I start to full-on belt, I will hear people talking and will immediately stop. Luckily, due to my being hidden in a shower, they don’t know who I am.
6. Seeing your random hookup the next morning and panicking
The most regrettable parts of the weekend come during the morning after. You’re probably not exactly sure what happened, but the pictures make it clear that you were going hard. Come Monday, you’re walking to class and minding your own business when suddenly you see someone who looks familiar but you can’t figure out why. Then you remember Saturday night. Now you have two choices. A) You can say hi and act like its not awkward at all or B) You can end the awkward eye contact, lower your head, and speed-walk away. Nine times out of 10, you will choose option B.
7. The fact that whenever you have a cute outfit you never see anyone you know but the one time you dress like a homeless person you see everyone
This is pretty self-explanatory but completely and totally unfair. The one time you decide that it’s okay to go out in your glasses with no makeup and sweats is the time you will see everyone you’ve ever known and their mothers. Why?
8. Being called on in a small discussion class when you haven’t done the reading
This is always really awkward because you don’t want to admit that you haven’t done the reading, so instead you decide to make something up and hope that it makes sense. Unfortunately while you are trying to think of something to make up you will most likely stutter and engage in long silent pauses in which everyone in your small discussion will feel uncomfortable and pity you. When you do eventually make something up, your professor will probably look confused and then just call on someone else. Save yourself from this phenomenon and do your readings.
9. Feeling competitive with the girl on the elliptical next to you at the Plex
The Plex itself is a very tense atmosphere for those of us who are not D1 athletes because it seems like everyone else is straight out of a Gatorade or Nike ad. As a relatively unathletic girl who only attends the Plex when someone forces me to go, I consistently gravitate towards the elliptical because I know how to use it and it faces the boys who lift (great view). However, even the girls who use the ellipticals at the Plex are intimidating. They put their resistance as high as possible and go for hours at a time. Usually this will motivate me for about 30 minutes until I become exhausted. Then I will give them a casual death stare and leave the Plex, head held high.
10. Fear of the person who’s laundry you are taking out of the washer to walk in as you are holding their stuff
This is a very real fear for those of us who want people to perceive us as being nice but are actually easily annoyed by the general population. If someone doesn’t get their laundry as soon as time is up, I believe that it is the prerogative of the next person in line to remove the previous person’s wet clothes and pile them on top of the washer. However, there is the rare occasion when you can be caught in the act of moving someone’s laundry by that person coming to pick up his or her stuff. You will feel extremely embarrassed that they saw you man-handling their intimate clothing, and you will look like an overeager beaver who’s life revolves around getting an open laundry machine. Just try to pile up their stuff as quick as possible to minimize the chance that you get caught. Laundry at BC really is cutthroat, so even though you feel super awkward for being seen throwing someone else’s clothes out for your own, we all know they would’ ve done the same.Featured image courtesy of Flickr.
(south) jersey girl. incapable of whispering. happiest in big cities. still trying to make "swag" happen. very