show, but more likely it was a Disney Princess-themed dance populated by excited
Midnight Caberet-ers. I joined them in shouting “I’ll Make a Man Out of You” in the
Blue Room basement while CATS kids swayed above us to music that sounded like
trash slowly crumpling. I stepped outside for some air and got my nightly dose of
secondhand smoke, catching up with friends who couldn’t be bothered to attend
Last night in Paris, I took flaming shots in a crowded bar called Chupitos. Next to me,
a man was blindfolded and opened his mouth to receive alcohol via a squirting dildo.
We left the place to drink mango juice and rum on the street, then paid a cover to
get into a two-level club with ornate wallpaper and an energetic playlist featuring
Highway to Hell and Hey Ya! My friends left periodically to visit the fumoir, a French
version of John Collector’s basement.
I never thought I’d say it, but amidst my Paris partying, I miss the Blue Room.
Maybe it’s just a passing fancy in my come-one-come-all “Let’s Miss Sarah
Lawrence!” parade, but I think it’s actually beginning to occupy a special space in my
Here’s why I think so fondly of our shoddy “social space,” and why you should be
grateful you get to go next Saturday night:
It’s free. Let’s break this down using numbers: Fifth of whiskey from the Fleetwood
shop = no more than $15.00. Coca-cola from the pub: free in my mind, since you
already have meal money. But for number’s sake, let’s say $2.50? Blue Room itself =
Blue Room timez total: $17.50
Let’s say instead you go for a night on the town in NY. One cocktail, plus the round
of shots you will inevitably buy for your friends: $27.00. Metro fare: $5.00. Cab fare
when you’re too tired to walk: $18.00. Midnight pizza: $1.00.
City escapade total: $51.00
Note: My estimates may be slightly skewed. The point is that the Blue Room is a
It’s convenient. Let’s consider what exactly you’re paying so little for! Partying in
the Blue Room means you’re surrounded by your friends, you can manipulate the DJ
into playing the latest Ke$ha and/or Grimes, and you’re mere minutes away from
your warm bed. The very same bed you can roll out of in the morning to stumble
down Bates hill for slimy but wonderful brunch pierogis.
It’s safe. Some might say too safe, especially when students go to the hospital the
minute security sees them stumble. But after experiencing city bar crawls and the
street harassment that goes along with them, I’m grateful that at Sarah Lawrence I
get to go out in a semi-sheltered environment. I’m less likely to be groped by a man
with a receding hairline and gold fillings, and if my peers are just as rowdy or rude,
security is waiting at the door.
It’s young and wild and free. Be prepared to push your stringy, sweaty hair out
of your eyes every 10 seconds. Get low. Do your sexiest Ciara impressions on the
platform they occasionally leave in the middle of the dance floor. If you were at The
Standard, you’d be worried about forgetting your bag, worried about looking like a
fool in front of some Ford models. Even if you were at Mama’s Bar in Alphabet City,
some bros would probably snigger in the corner as you attempted your best rock n’
roll head nod.
At the Blue Room, you’ve got no one to impress (to think otherwise would mean
the downfall of the inimitable atmosphere). For once, Sarah Lawrence students are
a swarm of similar individuals, looking to let loose or get laid. You might bemoan
the fact that, once again, you’re drinking a 40 and slathering yourself in glitter, but
consider the fleeting nature of deliciously sordid Blue Room times. No Parisian
nightclub can compare.