Buzz at Senior Bar Night is from more than cheap beer

Senior Bar Night freaked me out.

The whole evening made me think about un-fun things in my near future, things you don’t want to think about when you’re a 22-year-old student, less than two months to graduation with no job, no car, no significant other and no place to live.

Unfortunately, all of these things were the topics of conversation.

I know, I know. I could have drank more and thought less. Had they been serving up my favorite drink, Long Islands (or anything with hard liquor in it, for that matter), this column would be about something else, perhaps something more, ahem, captivating.

Unfortunately for you (and me), it was Miller Lite and MGD all night long. On the bright side, they were only a buck. On the dark side, after three cups that held only slightly more liquid than a deluxe Dixie cup, I had maxed out on beer for the night, possibly the entire month. And it was only an hour and a half into the night.

Anyway, as I dealt with my Miller Lites, the evening took on a passively surreal feeling. I couldn’t identify the source of the weirdness. Perhaps it was the setting. Norris is typically a place where students meet for group projects or a coffee talk, not to get drunk on cheap beer. But I’d been to a bar night at Norris Fall Quarter, and it didn’t seem surreal at all, so I ruled out location.

Maybe, I thought, it was the overkill of the “What Are You Doing Next Year?” conversation.

This conversation did not go so well for me that night. In fact, it generally went something like this:

Future consultant: “Have you found a job yet?”

Jobless self: “No.”

Future consultant: “Well, there’s always temping.”

Jobless self: “Right. I’m going to get another beer.”

The thing is, that conversation did not so much cause a weird feeling more than it did an irritated, pissed-off feeling. So I ruled that out, too.

That was about as far as my thoughts went on the matter, as I’m generally not an advocate of prolonged thinking in a bar or bar-like setting. I decided to ignore the weird feeling, and enjoy the rest of the passively surreal night for what it was.

My fellow seniors were merrily drinking away and tossing out quite a few funny remarks, such as, “Everyone I’ve ever hooked up with is here tonight” and “I can’t believe he/ she is working for Andersen/ got into med school/ is getting married/ is actually going to graduate/ didn’t die last Dillo Day.”

Then, out of nowhere, a friend made an observation that suddenly made sense of the entire evening. His brilliance didn’t faze him, since by that point he was sitting in a pile of empty Dixie cups with a beer mustache. But to his credit he managed to say something fairly interesting, which I will repeat here for public musing.

He said, “So, this is what Senior Week is going to be like.”

Finally, it clicked: This was the last Senior Bar Night.

This was the official beginning of the end.

Wow, talk about a weird feeling. nyou