Nadkarni: Letting go of fanhood

Rohan Nadkarni

First off, I can’t write this column without mentioning hologram Tupac. If you live under a rock or don’t follow Joseph Diebold on Twitter, you had to think the daggering at Major Lazer would be the weirdest thing about last weekend. But no, Coachella has to drop a hologram of Tupac on us. Who else are we going to bring back from the dead?

Also, I need to provide quick note on Major Lazer. I happened to be really close to the stage for the entire show, but I owe an apology to the small Asian girl who was dancing in front of me. As it turns out, the floor got really crowded as the night went on, and while trapped in a small space I was caught semi-grinding on small Asian girl’s back, and I can’t imagine it was enjoyable.

Anyway, as I try to enjoy Spring Quarter despite the lack of watchable sports (I cover lacrosse…and they win. Every. Single. Time). I find myself still oddly reminded about my past glories in the student section at football and basketball games. These reminders come in the form of frequently bumping into athletes around campus or in class.

Northwestern seems to be pretty unique in terms of integrating athletes with the other students on campus. My brother went to the University of Florida, and on the rare occasion he saw Tim Tebow on campus, students didn’t always get a chance to approach him.

For most people, the athlete integration on campus isn’t really a big deal at all. But for a sports-obsessed nut job like me who also needs to be an impartial journalist? Things can get rough.

My life is all about internal struggles. It doesn’t help that I can’t make the simplest decisions without help from my friends. If the Hinman dining hall has chocolate pudding and Oreo cream pies on the same day, I could break down emotionally.

Whenever I see athletes around campus, my immediate reaction is to think of anything to try to become their best friend. This is because I’m extremely annoying and mildly a stalker. But then my journalistic side kicks in, and I realize I can’t be all buddy-buddy with everyone I meet.

My over-eagerness has also led to some classic awkward moments.

Chance Carter (he of the 17-point play in last weekend’s spring game) probably hated me after all the goofy conversation I attempted to make with him during Fall Quarter. I also tweet at Brian Peters a lot until he pity-replies to me.

You might be wondering what all this is about. You probably don’t care. You’re probably going to be that anonymous commenter on the website who rips The Daily for even printing this.

But for me, this is a serious change in my life. It’s funny how at college, everything hits you really fast. A year back from today, my life was completely different. I was in a serious relationship, I had no idea who John Shurna was and I cheered every single Florida sports team I loved with ruthless abandon.

Now? I annoyed a small Asian girl on the dancefloor of an electro-pop concert, and I think 60 degrees is a warm day.

For me, part of the growing up process means letting go of all the athletes I love to root for. The fandom that led me to this school in the first place now means I can’t always be cheering for the school I attend.

So what should you do if you see an athlete around campus? Tell him Rohan says hi.

Rohan Nadkarni is a Medill freshman. He can be reached at [email protected]