Until college, I was the prude. The hot Asian prude, but nonetheless the prude. At my ironically slutty all-girls Catholic school, everyone tried to hide their obvious skankiness. And while my boyfriend and I had been doing the dance with no pants all along, I didn’t want to tarnish the cute and innocent reputation I’d built up for so long. Back then, sex and all things related were taboo.
Now fast forward to my first few months of college: Suddenly thrust into this new environment, I was a sheltered sponge ready to soak up all the new experiences I could get. With encouragement from my new friends and a developed taste for alcohol, I learned fast. This was a new me — the confident A, who will scope out a party and easily grab the hottest guy there by the end. Who wants to get tied down anyway? Why do we need conversations? What’s a first or last name?
As we all know, hooking up in Santa Barbara is not frowned upon. It’s our way of having a good time and making new friends. One of the things I admire most about I.V. culture is that it understands the committment-free aspect of hook-ups. It really is a shame that the rest of the world won’t join in on this neighborhood orgy of sorts. And this is where my dilemma comes in.
Over Spring Break, I met a boy from home who made me shiver by just looking into my eyes. He was so incredibly attractive that I had dirty thoughts in my head for days. My usual I.V.-approved reaction — “Hey, I think you’re cute, let’s make out!” — wasn’t going to work. I was out of my I.V. comfort zone and I panicked. At school, the cutie and I would easily end up in the nearest bedroom (or bathroom, closet, bush, etc.). At home, however, I felt myself wanting more than that sort of instant gratification. And while nothing more than friendship could come from our relationship because of the distance, the experience has really taught me a lesson about how much I have changed as a result of my first year in college.
Before I came here, a friend told me that UCSB is like an adult Disneyland. There are amazing people who don’t judge or disapprove of your promiscuous, drunk endeavors. On DP, guys get wolf whistles and girls let their girls hang out. During the school year, my mind is in the zone — the lovin’ zone; I’m in the Santa Barbara state of mind. But when I go home, I need to convert my mind back to the standards of San Francisco life. I can’t just bring a new guy home every night. I can’t just make out with the hottest guy at the club (before getting his name, anyway).
In just a few weeks, I again have to prepare myself for the oppressive place we call the real world. One day I want to be able to run around hugging and loving everyone. But alas, the rest of the world isn’t ready for our type of openness and understanding…aside from good ol’ Amsterdam, of course.
Anonymous is a first-year global and international studies major.