Welcome to UCSB – I hope you are ready to fuckin’ party! You probably have a lot of worries right now – moving away from home, buying books, finding your classes, etc. You really don’t need to worry about any of those things. UCSB has plenty of programs in place to make you feel comfortable and address any concern you could ever have. However, our great school lacks an introduction to the unique party culture of Isla Vista. Luckily for your freshman class, you have an experienced and helpful party columnist: ME! Follow my tips and you will fit into our sweet environment in no time.

First things first, get a Facebook profile. Everyone here has one and uses it nearly every day. You will meet hundreds of new people within your first few days of college, and it will be nearly impossible to remember most of them without adding them as a Facebook friend. Facebook also provides an easy way to both invite and be invited to parties. You can even post sweet pictures of yourself doing beer bongs in your dorm room or keg stands at the beach. All of your friends from high school will see the fun you are having and be envious that they did not go to such a badass university.

Once you have your Facebook profile set up, are finished moving into your dorm room and have said peace to your parentals, it’s time to go out and party. Chances are good that you – or at least someone on your floor – will know of a party in I.V. Keep in mind the following words of wisdom while partying here.

My first tip is to never wear your UCSB sweatshirt out at night. I know you are proud and happy to be here, but you might as well wear a bright red shirt that says freshman on it. You don’t want to draw too much public attention to the fact that you are new to I.V.

Next, never walk on the sidewalk. There is only one main area in I.V. in which it is acceptable to walk on the sidewalk: the I.V. loop. This is the semicircle region where there are shops, restaurants, ATMs, bars and the Isla Vista Foot Patrol station. It is perfectly normal to walk on the side of the road or, if you’re drunk enough, even the middle of the road. If you walk down Del Playa Drive on the sidewalk wearing UCSB gear, you are guaranteed to be hit with a water balloon. It’s a bit of a tradition to throw water balloons at freshmen. Consider yourself forewarned.

Watch out for the IVFP. The IVFP serves as our local police force. About half of them are actually pretty cool and reasonable, but the other half are dickheads. When it comes to the law, Isla Vista and Santa Barbara officers are very strict. Almost every day I can see someone get pulled over for rolling a stop sign or not wearing a seatbelt outside of my window. Be careful when driving, biking or walking around the police. They will not hesitate to approach you and smell your beverage or detain you if you appear to be drunk.

My last piece of advice is to not attempt to use a fake ID anywhere in I.V. or downtown Santa Barbara. I had two really good fake IDs taken away when I was a freshman. Liquor stores, bars and restaurants have become even stricter in the past few years. I know people that had to pay over a thousand dollars or had their license suspended for using a fake. Anyway, you don’t really even need to use a fake in I.V. There are always house parties with free booze. If you want to pre-game in your dorm room, it is not too hard to find someone of age to buy the booze for you.

I hope these tips help when you go out to party in I.V. The bottom line is that most people here just want to get drunk and have fun. If you ever have any questions about I.V. or partying in general, check out my articles on the Nexus website, www.dailynexus.com. Feel free to send me a Facebook message or e-mail me at raymondcollins@umail.ucsb.edu with any questions, concerns, complaints, etc. Welcome to UCSB!