Okay, so it’s been about a month since I’ve first walked onto campus. Yes, I am a freshman. A freshman who looks five years younger than she really is. When I was getting my wisdom teeth pulled two months ago, my dentist commented on how I was “becoming a lady – let me guess! 13?” This leads me to believe that I will have the “FRESHMAN” sign forever taped to my forehead, even as I enter my senior year.

College thus far has been an educational experience. I’ve discovered that DP stands for (lame-ass) Drunken People, and that I won’t have to be worrying about gaining the freshman fifteen because of all that damn walking. Parking is not only impossible to find and expensive, but it is also insanely dumb. I already know how much campus parking costs, and how I still have to walk for miles to get to my next class. Back at my apartment complex it costs $250 a month for a parking space. Two hundred and fifty fucking dollars! And for what will I use my car? To drive to the goddamned market? By the time I get to the goddamned market, I’ll be too broke to buy some goddamned milk – thus, the goddamned walking. It doesn’t matter if you’ve completely memorized the damn bus schedule. You’re still gonna have to walk long enough to get sticky and icky, making you wonder why the hell you did something so dumb as wearing a thick layer of Cover Girl and yucky-fied eyeliner to the goddamned market.

And what is up with all this hype about SB parties? Before college, I’d never gone to an actual party – other than the ones you blow out candles at – and so I was curious as to what everyone was talking about: “You’re going to UCSB? [lame raising-the-roof gesture] Party central!” Not to say that I’ve ever been intrigued by going somewhere, getting drunk and then calling up complete strangers to blubber about how much I love them.

Still, I was curious. Everyone was telling me how great it was, so I decided to just get hooch-tafied with a group of people and get out onto the famed Del Playa.

As I approached the street with my crew, all hoochied out and ready to have some fun, the smell kinda hit me. It’s hard to explain, but it’s like a mix between a bag of Wonderbread and gastrointestinal juices. And I see about three strong crowds of people surrounding a handful of houses, holding plastic cups and swaying. Not really dancing – even though the music was all right – but just swaying. And trying to talk to each other. Even though the music’s so loud that you feel like your eardrums are being used as a pair of bongos on Mardi Gras. But who cares? It seemed practical to them. Gee, this looked like fun.

I figured that maybe it was just that one night. Maybe there was something wrong with me. There had to be something wrong if I wasn’t enjoying the nightlife. So I got hoochied out for the next two weeks and still arrived at the same conclusion: buzzed or unbuzzed, partying wasn’t all too fun on DP.

I couldn’t really understand – I mean, the tenants back at my apartment complex seem to be having fun every night. And I mean every night. How do they ever get any legitimate work done? And what are they still celebrating? Week three at UCSB? [sarcastic thumbs-up sign] Score.

There are all sorts of banging and screaming and laughing and that familiar smell of Wonderbread – despite the no-alcohol policy – going on. Even on Sunday nights. Seriously, what ARE they celebrating? “It’s MONDAY tomorrow! WHOO HOO!!!”

But, as I’ve learned in the past few weeks, no one cares in college. And, if you’re a community college student – like my beloved tenants – you really, really, really don’t care.

Alice Shin is a freshman film studies major.