Dorm Damage: A Great American Pastime
As my first year at Colby draws to a close, I often catch myself staring off pensively, contemplating the many beautiful wonders of the world. Usually I am staring into a mirror. But other times, I am reflecting on what an experience this year has been. Indeed, it has been a fantastic journey. I think the thing I love most about Colby is its sense of tradition. Colby has many traditions, but in this article, I would like to focus on my favorite: dorm damage.
The first few weekends on campus, I was a little lost. I tried hanging out with friends, I tried going to the movies, I tried drinking irresponsibly. Each had its merits, yet none were truly fulfilling. It wasn't until a friend introduced me to the violent pleasures of dorm damage that I really found my niche.
I acknowledge that there are people who are against dorm damage. In fact, I once numbered among them. There are arguments aplenty against it. Some people don't have the physical strength required to properly damage a dorm. Some people have been drinking long enough to destroy any semblance of hand-eye coordination that they once had, so trying to remove a soap dispenser with their bare hands resembles very much a hippopotamus trying to do calligraphy. And some people, like me, are just too lazy to damage a dorm. It seems like an awful lot of work to draw crude depictions of male genitalia all over the first floor of Dana just for fun.
But I was won over by the charms of dorm damage. I've heard it compared to vandalism, but that is an unfair comparison. In the case of vandalism, one person usually has to bear the cost burden. But with dorm damage, everyone in the dorm gets to pay! It's a terrific system. You can throw as many flaming vending machines through as many plate glass windows as you would like, and you never have to pay the full cost. God bless America.
Apart from the wonderful lack of personal responsibility involved in dorm damage, there are also the joys inherent in the physical act itself. Picture it: you've had a long week, you've attended almost half of your classes, and you've done 45 minutes of homework. You're at the point where all you want to do is funnel a fifth of Bacardi 151 and run down a hallway at full speed slapping down exit signs with a squash racket you stole from some fool's unlocked room.
Clearly, dorm damage is a great stress reliever. I can't think of a more productive (or safe) way of getting your anger out. Nothing can match the therapeutic powers of punching drywall extremely hard or breaking a mirror because quite frankly you were not comfortable with the way that it was looking at you.
It always fills me with pride when I wake up and survey the prior night's dorm damage. I walk to the bathroom and see torn posters and graffiti, then find out that I cannot shower because someone has ripped down both curtains in order to do God knows what (I like to think the person wore it like a cape, but that is just speculation). Or maybe I find that I cannot properly style my hair because someone has left five gallons of chocolate ice cream to melt across the entire mirror. Whatever the case, I am happy to see the violent urges of the Colby Community manifest themselves safely, rather than in truly destructive actions, like hurtful words or baby seal clubbing.