Contrary to popular belief, spring conference week is the most productive time of year. It is that magical time when students frolic throughout campus on their skateboards, bikes, or bare feet and enjoy the May breeze with that special, glazed over look in their eyes that only comes from a well-spent 72-hour period of Red Bull intake in the library—i.e. the mark of a champion.
In fact, conference week is a time for Sarah Lawrence students to perform a number of self-worth affirming activities. Firstly, all the little budding chemists and/or pharmacists out there can put their highly-developed drug council to use. It is almost as if all the weekends of drug-induced raging at parties is done simply to have this one, glowing week. It is only during conference week that experiments like how many doses of Ritalin can I take with my Xanax and still be able to drink an entire bottle of wine by myself tonight? or how many lines of cocaine can I do in the library bathroom without nose bleeding all over the Pillow Room? happen.
“Yeah, I basically nailed it last semester. I took so much Adderall during conference week that when I was presenting my conference work in my Seminar, I threw up bright blue all over this chick next to me. I still got a decent evaluation,” shared Harriet Johnson ’15.
“My first year, I drank vodka and Red Bulls and only ate fries and Peppermint Patties every single day during conference week. I was constantly day drunk. Actually, I wrote all of my conference papers completely sloshed. I ended up publishing my paper on the role of female education and the patriarchy in Seventeenth-Century Chinese Lit. so I guess it all worked out. There was a dance component that did not end as well, though,” said Veronica Liebowitz ’14.
Shine on, you beautiful rock stars.
Individuality-asserting outlets like SLC Anon also make conference week such a majestic time of year. Typically, you trash talk, slut-shame, and attack your peers to your respective friend group. If there is one person in particular who bothers you, you might even have a group message with your friends dedicated solely to being mean to this individual, which results in you having an uncomfortable folding chair with your name on it in Hell. But lo and behold! Conference week is the one time of year where it is socially acceptable to publically degrade someone. Anything goes—if you want to out someone, you do it. If you want to shame someone after they have broken your heart, now’s your time, precious. If you just want to make an arbitrary list of the hottest lesbians on campus, well by George, this is your damn moment! Do not think about other people’s feelings. They do not matter. You hate them, this has been a really tough semester, and your therapist is always telling you to let your feelings out. Go to the mattresses and slaughter that bitch.
Thirdly, Sarah Lawrence students become so culturally aware during conference week. Never are there as many Buzzfeed quiz results posted on Facebook. And it’s great, too, because we all suddenly start to care about the results our friends get on quizzes like “What type of puppy are you?” and “Which Disney princess are you?” and “What kind of sandwich are you?” If nothing else, conference week is a fantastic community-builder. Not to mention the sudden media experts we all become! Um, Brother Bear AND Brother Bear 2 AND The Emperor’s New Groove are on Netflix? You must watch them instantly. Put all work aside and relive your childhood. Conference week is a time when we all can go back to those tender moments of drinking Juicy Juice, eating Teddy Grahams, and viewing some of the greatest cartoons ever made. Similarly, students find it to be the most reasonable time to begin, and binge watch, an entire TV series; usually one that is approximately six seasons long. If anything, you are making yourself more cultured, which will only inform your writing. As it stands on the Sarah Lawrence campus, Jason Rollins holds the 2011 record for most Netflix watched in a one-week time span. Is beating him your new goal? It should be.
With all that said, I think it is safe to say that conference week is actually a beneficial time for Sarah Lawrence students. While most other schools are taking finals, we are the lucky leprechauns who have the chance to self-medicate, day-drink, emotionally abuse each other, and procrastinate unconditionally. So, as this conference week rolls around, let us all make the most of our quarter of a million dollar education, shall we? Challenge accepted.
* All people mentioned in this piece are fictitious.
Photo by Tiffany Robyn Soetikno