The Scarlet & Black

The Student News Site of Grinnell College

The Scarlet & Black

The Scarlet & Black

The academics anonymous Grinnell bucket list

As you get older and spend more time in school, you gradually become a salesman for it, always sharing your own experience with others. And, since one of us (Stuchlik) has to do it twice a week due to his position as a tour guide, we wanted to share some of our own tidbits about Grinnell, things that in our opinion all students should attempt before graduating (and, no, we are not talking about standard “visit a music performance, visit an athletic event, stop by a bookstore” agenda). Our experiences are somewhat unique. Nevertheless, not only do they bring good memories with a sad touch of nostalgia back to us, but they also did make our time in Grinnell truly memorable. Try them yourself, though be careful as some of these are not for the lightest of hearts.

Biking is a great and easy way to get around campus, especially if you need to travel from, say, JRC to Noyce. An even better experience is to ride one of the college-owned campus bikes. You’ve seen them around—yellow, old, lying on the ground unused. Yes, we know that some are missing wheels, some are without handlebars, some are short of seats and most lack all three. We know that you pretty much have to be a professional unicyclist to successfully ride one. Nevertheless, rumor has it there is one bike that actually works. So, find it and proudly ride it around campus! Then, buy a lock and use it as your own personal bike for the semester, to the bemusement of others. But, even if you don’t find that special one, ride another one for fun anyway—just make sure beforehand that your insurance is covering unmotorized vehicle accidents.

Have you ever tried using your P-card as an ID in town? Not a problem. A slightly more difficult task involves convincing a small local shop or a business—or, even, Kum-and-Go—to accept your dining dollars as an adequate means of transaction. Unfortunately, we’ve tried, but, to our surprise, were unsuccessful. Nonetheless, you should try it anyway because, if nothing else, such a seemingly foolish enquiry can eventually send a strong message to College that using P-cards in town may not be that bad of an idea after all.

Harris. Can you believe they also show movies there? We will be the first to concede that two or three or even ten beverages of your choice may help bring you to Harris, but if you think that is the whole story, you are sorely mistaken. Yes, you can venture to Harris even if you haven’t abused any substances—without abusing your mind in the process. And, is there any better feeling than that mix of self-righteousness and mental clarity that comes from watching your friends make drunken mistakes? Sober Harris is definitely something to experience.

Nobody likes waiting for the stir-fry. And seemingly everyone—at what you were misled to believe was a small college—also likes chicken and rice for dinner. The difference is timing. Others have shown up to the d-hall first—and now you have to wait for their order to go through a number of woks you can count on one hand, before you can even think about your stupid broccoli again. But, don’t just go and eighty-six the culinary fantasy of another hungry Grinnellian. Rather, ask yourself, “Why not?” Why not just grab someone else’s whole tray full of food that you want and get your dinner on. If nothing else, you’ll be reminding that unsuspecting child that, when it comes to the dining hall, you better play defense. So, feel free to grab someone else’s tray, eat its contents and then criticize the awful dinner choices that the unfortunate victim has made.

Three out of four Grinnell students have woken up in an unfamiliar and hostile environment. Okay, maybe that statistic is bogus, but we just wanted to get your attention. Consider all the different places you woke up at since August of your first year. Now think about which was the most ridiculous. Maybe it was the Fireplace Lounge in April of first year, using only beloved S&B’s as blankets. Or maybe it was the female restroom wearing all but the bottom half of a Disco outfit. Either way, these are the records that are meant … no … need to be broken. Just don’t take our spot on Mac Field.

In the end, our parting advice is simple—get involved. There really is something out there in Grinnell that you would enjoy doing, and if it doesn’t exist now, it’s easy for you to get it started. Just about anything you want to do, you can do here. Believe us when we tell you this is a place that has nearly no limits—and we don’t mean Pizza Hut’s lunch buffet. Hey, you can even get involved with one local newspaper if your thing is writing silly columns about stupid stuff like going to Harris sober.

Leave a Comment
More to Discover
Donate to The Scarlet & Black
Our Goal

Comments (0)

All The Scarlet & Black Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *