By Matt Lifson
Published on Friday, April 8, 2011
When we applied to Dartmouth, did we agree to become the type of people who automatically places others in neatly-labeled-boxes? Did we want to become someone who judges others for not getting the Goldman Sachs internship — or for wanting the Goldman internship in the first place? For some of us, the answer is “yes.” These are “Dartmouth didn’t make me a douche, I made Dartmouth douchey” types.
Who are they? There are countless students who came here saying “Please and thank you, ma’am,” but quickly changed. I speak of the guy from South Carolina who would never have dreamt of booting on a girl — much less booting for fun — but who, after setting foot in Sig Ep over Homecoming, immediately realized the naivety and futility of his anti-booting moral high-horse. Dartmouth undergrads are universally faced with the choice between automatically becoming a douche bag due to campus’ stuck-up environment, or distinguishing oneself from the douchebaggery of Dartmouth and attempting to become a normal, socially competent person during these formative years of college. It’s no secret that Dartmouth changes many people for the worse — Dartmouth makes people douches. Each June, Dartmouth ceremoniously spits its recent grads out onto the New Jersey Turnpike, right outside of New York City. From there they must decide whether to be the Murray Hill post-Dartmouth I-banking douche or the Williamsburg holier-than-thou hipster douche. The possibilities for Dartmouth-inspired douchiness are endless.
Take, for example, the frat bro douche. This one’s pretty much a no-brainer, but I’ll spell it out: The frat bro douche thinks that if you boot, fart and drunkenly seduce a girl simultaneously you will become Eleazar Wheelock. (He is, of course, widely reputed to have been the ultimate bro.)
Then there’s the “You actually want to go into I-banking?!” douche. This hypocritical hipster wants you to think that he or she is SO beyond selling out, but the truth of the matter is that he or she is actually a Dartmouth legacy who currently manages a $20 billion portfolio at Deutsche Bank and can afford to live in that ever-trendy Brooklyn neighborhood because the plug on Daddy’s American Express Black Card isn’t being pulled anytime soon. Don’t be fooled — they’re just as douchey as you are.
Dartmouth also has a weird way of embracing the pre-existing douchiness of an incoming class. We all know the “I went to Exeter and learned about gender identities in post-colonial North Africa in ninth grade” douche. He doesn’t understand that his Exeter apparel, smug speech and (obnoxiously) tasteful dorm decor are completely unnecessary. These douches think they were provided better educations than their Exeter-less peers, and no one on this campus dares to set them straight. (To make matters worse, they’re probably right.)
Similarly annoying upon matriculation is the equally ubiquitous“I went to a public school too!” former magnet-school student.. A magnet school is not a public school, douche bag. Yes, I know it’s publicly funded — I’m not an ignorant douche. (I may, however, be a cheeky Mirror writer douche … but that’s another story.) Get over the “austerity” of your public school education and realize that having access to magnet school education represents a certain level of academic privilege in itself.
Finally, we come to the ever-present “I got into Dartmouth despite my real public school education” douches — the most condescending douche bags of all. They think that having attended a public high school makes them better than the private school bunch. “Just look at the odds stacked against our applications!” First of all, going to Greenwich High School is not grounds for a hardship plea. In fact, said schools are equally as good as America’s private high schools, and let’s face it — if you didn’t go to one of those elite public high schools, you probably stick out like a sore thumb in AD. But it’s no reason to rant and rave about your exceptional intelligence in the face of adversity. All of us competed with equally intelligent and hard-working students for their spots at Dartmouth. So shut your mouth, you douche.