Hello friends! I thought for a good deal of time about what I wanted to do in this first column. At first I tried being funny. A few hours later all I had to show was a wastebasket full of crumpled-up laptops, and the crushing realization that I will be going to law school next year. Undeterred, I decided to give “contemplative” a shot, and was devastated to find that my thinking cap had been decimated by moth-damage after being in storage since high school and had some residual vom-stains left over from Freshman Green Key. So I asked my friend(s) for help.
But most of them were either high or too busy greasing up the old cornhole for the corporatedouchery.careerfair.org. I had hit a wall. And then a realization washed over me like a wave of nausea during a 10A. What would Junior Seau tell me if I was watching a PSA about self-esteem on Nickelodeon? Go with what you know.
So, intrepid journalist that I am, I decided to buy a notebook and made a list of those things which I know best. Overactive Bladder Syndrome? Too close to home. Jujitsu? Too Ethnic. Jokes about Psi U? Too Many. The Ladies? Ohhh yeah.
So what advice can I give you about love at Dartmouth that is vaguely topical and completely uncontroversial? (hi Dartmouth Mirror!) The answer: Tom Kidera’s Guide To Breaking Up With Your High School Boy/Girlfriend. So gather close oh-tens, have some candy, get in my van, I’m going to give you a lesson. You’re in college now. You even have the Bob Marley poster to prove it! But you should know that along with college status comes responsibility, and one of those responsibilities for the chicas is putting yourself in a position to be manipulated and exploited by older, frattier college students.
But I’m not just talking to the ladies here (read: yes I am); the dudes must also make efforts to achieve “dude” status. Is anyone going to believe you when you tell them you went home with that bangin’ little honeydip you met at Tri-Kap if you’re spending all your minutes texting your High School Girlfriend while she’s 15 hours away grinding on some Heisman Candidate? No. Result? The fairytale has come to a close. But not before you bring yourself to break it off; an act that requires delicacy, tact and a Vanilla Ice-ian way with words. Since you probably have none of those, I’ve come up with some alternative methods of execution.
Option 1: The Mackerel-Gram. I’m sure you’ve all heard of candy-grams, singing telegrams, anthrax-grams and the like. Well in this permutation you send your former flame a rotting mackerel head with a message stapled to the top: “What up grrl? This mackerel is livelier than our romantic prospects. Check you l8r!”
For the ladies, I suggest a more subtle approach. Perhaps something along the lines of, “Tom, you’ve always been a great friend, but I really see us moving in different directions now that you’ve left Rochester. I hooked up with Rob the other night, and I really think that there is a future for me and him. I know you two have been best friends since first grade, but I promise it won’t be awkward when you come home. Sorry again. Sincerely, Heartless B*tch.” Personal experiences aside, I think this method really strikes a nice balance between sincerity (paying the postage) and seriousness (rotting fish head).
Option 2: Facebook Updates. Sure, you could go the easy route and just change your Looking For status to Whatever I Can Get, but you’re a Dartmouth student. You shouldn’t settle for the mundane. I suggest you switch it up a bit. Change your interests from “sushi, mixers!, 80s music, my girls, the beach, pong!” to “getting it on the regular from someone other than my high school boyfriend!, sloring it up collegiate-style.”
The added advantage to taking this route is that not only are you sending a message to your love from back home, you’re also taking out some much sought-after ad space in a very public forum to say, “I’m Stephanie, I’m a 10 and I’m available.” The positive feedback you’ll get from your honesty will really be touching.
Now keep in mind these are really more guidelines than anything else, and here at Dartmouth we award creativity above all else. So feel it out for yourself. Maybe your (soon-to-be ex) girlfriend is a sick kitten kind of a girl rather than a dead mackerel kind of girl. Who knows; trust your gut. Either way, when you do step up to the plate and decide to claim your freedom, feel free to drop me a line to tell me how it went. I’ll be the guy passed out in the AD basement, on the phone with his high school girlfriend.