The archetypal students, and how to handle them
Published: August 29, 2012
Common question: "What does it all mean?"
Academic habits: Does fairly well, despite irritating professors with monologues and contrarianism. Didn't get into Princeton because his application essays were "too controversial."
Often found: In the library, poring over tomes of philosophy and beat fiction or developing theoretical fixes for every economical problem and international conflict.
iPod playlist: Jack Kerouac Reads On the Road. A lot of bands you haven't heard of.
Key words: "Anthropology," "semiotics," "ennui," "ignorant."
Pros: Will tell you his philosophy of life.
Cons: Will tell you his philosophy of life.
How to bluff: Share your plans for a post-college trip to India under the influence of DMT and Nietzsche. Ask to borrow his copy of The Stranger and comment on his notes.
3. The Sorority Princess
Parents' credit card
Grande, skinny, no-whip, vanilla latte
Bag emblazoned with sorority letters
Hard Tail yoga pants (though never seen
coming to or from yoga)
Common questions: "Can I put that on my card?" or [in awestruck tone] "You do your own laundry?"
Academic habits: Attends class for purely social reasons. Otherwise skips to go shopping for sunglasses, art supplies or, if it's rush season, friends.
Often found: Traveling in packs, typically three to 18 deep.
iPod playlist: A whole playlist of Adele remixes, Nicki Minaj, Bruno Mars, Eminem, and the Script.
Key words: "Like," "sorostitute," "box wine."
Pros: Has been in a protective, upper-middle-class bubble so long she will not challenge you with reality.
Cons: Strains and elevates her voice to match the standard sorority pitch. Easily bored or annoyed.
How to bluff: Ask her if she's a natural blonde, or if she knows of any good coffee shops.
4. The Star Athlete
Aura of superiority
Entire wardrobe dictated by the athletic department
Common questions: "What's the score?" and "Did we have a test last week?"
Academic habits: Sometimes comes to class just to see what it's like, leaving as soon as he's consumed the two Muscle Milks and three Clif Bars he has in his backpack.
Often found: Travels only with other athletes, or within rotating clouds of groupies.
iPod playlist: Rick Ross, "Eye of the Tiger" by Survivor, any generic rap or hard rock.
Key words: "Protein," "sweats," "practice."
Pros: Hang with him at the bar and you won't wait in lines or pay for drinks.
Cons: Won't hang with you at the bar.
How to bluff: Just steer away from mentioning the fact that only a very small percentage of college athletes are able to make a career out of their sport.