Tuesday, September 1, 2009

New Friends May Come and Go but Awkwardness Lasts Forever

Now how exactly do you make friends in college? As I'm going to a school that disregards the universally followed semester schedule I've taken to reading facebook quite extensively in the extra two weeks that I have on my hands. All of my friends facebook statuses resound with the same ebullient "I love College" declaration. Now besides giving me an unwelcome memory of an Asher Roth song, these statuses reiterate to me that I am not in college. The pictures of their new dorms, their wall posts about their annoyingly long homework assignments and early lectures seem completely foreign to me, like they're speaking a different language that I am trying hastily to translate (come to think about it this situation shares a striking resemblance to my french class). But mostly through by voyeurism I see how seamlessly they've made friends. Now my social skills aren't the most finally tuned instrument in the band room. I know, shocking right, considering my witty and charming disposition. But I'm really just not that friendly. Because who really wants to come across as that annoying, over eager, super cheerful girl? I mean that's usually the type of person I make fun of. I rarely even make friend requests on facebook because I don't want to come off as too eager or a person who check facebook constantly (albeit I have been doing just that in the last couple of days). Facebook, it seems, has been a breeding ground for pre-college friends yet I recoil from this form of friend making. Wouldn't it be pushy and a bit creepy to friend someone or write on their wall just because we're both in the Northwestern 2013 group? Yet I don't think my "eradicate eagerness" tactic is really going to be beneficial in this scenario. Of course I am going to try to force friendliness on my usually subdued temperament but how do I attain this without becoming pushy or scaring little children, or myself for that matter? Someone once told me that I was a bit of a loner and I'm starting to believe them. I mean I'm not going to pull a Salinger and move away to New Hampshire or anything but I just don't make friends that easily. Throughout high school I made a handful of great friends. And that was in place where I was reasonably comfortable and familiar with my surroundings. Which brings up another unnerving question.

Where exactly do you find these friends? Are they in your classes or your dorm or the clubs you join? How do you go about making friends in classes? I imagine there's no time to have a conversation while the teacher is giving a lecture and striking up a conversation about your interests in life in between your professors breaths about Tolstoy may just attract dirty looks. And what if the people in your dorm aren't exactly complementary to your character. Which seems like another hurtle. How do you go about making the right friends and not just ones for convenience sake. People say that they've made their best friends by chance. But what are the odds that you end up dorming next to your potential platonic soulmate or bump into them on the way to the dining hall? And this may be just be my paranoia but I think people get intimidated by me. And as much as I like to think it's because of my undeniable intelligence or my stunning good looks I think it's actually because of my name. People actually get scared of pronouncing my name wrong. Which is now that I think about it is understandable. When you pronounce someone's name wrong it's probably a bit disconcerting. Throughout my 13 years of public education teachers rarely called on my the first week. Mainly I think it was because they were apprehensive of saying my name. Now eventually people will become comfortable with my name. Though the usual curious/confused, wide eyed look on people's faces when I first introduce myself is to be expected, the obstacle isn't insurmountable. But do I really need another injury in my already handicapped friend making abilities? Hopefully I will make friends like a normal, socially balanced freshman. If not, well than at least I will be comforted knowing that New Hamshire isn't too far away.
On a Side Note: Aren't the outfits that the students are wearing the in picture just 80's-tastic?