By Moe Naqvi
Illustration by Arnie Bermudez
Arizona Daily Wildcat
Friday, September 3, 2004
As my second week of college comes to a close, I have seen and experienced things that I would never have thought about had I not lived in a residence hall.
Experiences ranging from the abnormal to the absurd occur everyday, whether I like it or not.
Every college student should start off his or her collegiate experience with residency in a hall in order to get the full effect of what it really means to be an independent college student.
The residence halls are a great way to interact and meet new people.
There can never be too many friends in a person's life. My very first night in Apache-Santa Cruz led me to my very first friend at the University of Arizona.
We will call this person "Corey." As I was leaving the showers, Corey came into the bathroom and said a cheery, "Hey, how are you doing?"
I casually respond, "A little scared. I just came from the public showers; what do you expect?"
Corey laughed and it was friendship at first sight.
We continued to talk, and then something awkward happened: He went into the shower and kept talking.
I was obliged to keep the conversation going with him while he took a shower. It's not like I could have left, because that would have been rude.
While Corey took his shower, I roamed the bathroom answering his questions and whatnot.
I can assure you that would never have happened if I lived outside the residence halls.
For one thing, nobody takes public showers outside of residence halls, and even if they did, no one would have the audacity to strike up a conversation with a random individual.
The bathroom has always been a private place and has never been viewed as a means of social interaction unless you live in the residence halls. Friends can pop out of the strangest places in a residence hall.
Residence hall life has also played a huge part in teaching me what not to do.
I learned through Police Beat last week that an individual in my residence hall drank an 18-pack of beer one lonely night and, when he was confronted by police in his room, unknowingly peed in his trash can while the cops were talking to him.
This individual turned out to be my wing-mate, and for the next three days he wobbled and hobbled down the hallways, not knowing whether it was August or January.
That story is going in the memory bank.
Residence hall life has also thrown me on the path of independence.
I have never done laundry in my life.
I know it is a little sad, but it is true.
Everything I touch I mess up, so I try not to move.
Although I have not actually taken my dirty clothes to the laundry yet, I know that I will eventually have to, all by myself, and that makes me feel independent.
My parents are not around to wake me up anymore, which really sucks because I love the snooze button on my alarm clock.
During the first week of school, I woke up late for my Air Force ROTC class, so instead of choosing to run to it to catch the last half, I dropped the class all together.
I had the independence to make that decision, and I am proud of myself.
Although one can become independent in a house or apartment, the residence halls have a wholesome community that makes becoming independent easier.
There are always people around to ask for help, be it with carrying a television or with calculus homework.
There are always people around to hang out with, and the resident assistants are wonderful people to ask for advice.
Even though my RA always quotes Rick James and makes me want to slap him, he helps all the freshmen in his wing better understand the college world, which I am sure all the other RAs do as well.
The residence hall environment is a great first chapter to college life because it helps first-year students become better acquainted with a crazy and confusing world.
Moe Naqvi is a physiological sciences freshman. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.