Welcome freshmen! We know who you are

Brian Stillman

I don’t know if you’ve noticed the fashion show on campus Monday and Tuesday, but after you read you`ll understand. It was great to see all the wide-eyed freshman invade campus this week, but most of them came to Iowa State with false perceptions of college life. While those of us who have been here for a year or three groggily rolled out bed Monday morning and threw on whatever was lying closest and stumbled to our first class, it was a different story for many freshman. I am sure that many of these underclassman hopped out of bed at the crack of 6 a.m. to “prepare” for their 8 o’clock classes. While we all went through this, it was still humorous to see them searching for their first classes at this strange new place. A few minutes to 10 a.m. Monday, I walked out of Carver on my way to the bookstore behind a classic Abercrombie and Fitch advertisement. Three students were walking to the Union, which would not have been anything special except for the conversation I overheard. One of the women was wearing capri pants, a purple tube top, a pair of Doc Marten sandals and an Abercrombie ball cap with a tight ponytail pulled through the back. The other young lady was wearing a pair of khaki shorts that perfectly accented her open-back top and a cute little haircut straight out of page four of Seventeen magazine. The young man had on cargo pants three sizes too big accompanying his faded Abercrombie shirt that apparently came in a combo with his ripped bill A&F khaki visor. On any Friday and Saturday night this would be a normal sight while walking from party to party, but it seemed just a little overkill for that early on a Monday morning. I would still not of given it much thought except for the eye-catching red key chains hanging around all of their necks clipped to their official ISU card holders. You know, the styling ones they give you when you register for new student days. While these key chains completely ruined everything they were going for in the style department it was what they said and did next that really made me laugh. Mr. Abercrombie pulled his campus map out of one of his twenty or so pockets and said “So now how do we get to Curtis?” For anyone who doesn’t know the campus very well yet let me just tell you that you don’t walk past the Union to get to Curtis coming from Carver. While this is the most classic example of freshman highjinks I have seen so far there are many other subtle clicks that I have noticed in the past couple of days that are sure fire ways to pick the freshman out of a crowd. The first is so obvious that anyone can easily notice the difference. Anyone who is still wearing one of those t-shirts with the Iowa State fight song on the back is dead give away. I’m convinced they give you those shirts to send home to your parents so they have something to remember you by, because it would be almost impossible to make them any uglier. Another dead give away is anyone who wears their old high school t-shirts anywhere other than the rec center. The third tip to telling if someone is a freshman is a little bit tougher to see, but if you pay close attention it will soon become clear. This third click is to watch people as they walk to class. The longer a student is at Iowa State the more they keep their eyes up and the more talkative they become. Next time you are walking across campus watch the people who are coming at you and see how they react. Typically, freshman are still feeling out of place so as soon as they get close to another person their eyes shoot to the pavement in front of them and they don’t say a word as they pass. To any freshman who may be reading this article, let me give you a little advice on this topic. As you roam back and forth to class the next few days keep your eyes open and give the other students a chance. Believe it or not, most people here are really nice and are more likely to give you a pleasant nod and say hi than give you the death stare you might expect. And if you have a few of these clicks I have talked about above don’t worry about it too much, we’ve all been there and made it through just fine.