The Gavel's Diatribe acts as the satirical medium for short rants over topics ranging from complete triviality to utmost importance.
“Are you free tomorrow from 11:25am-11:40am (ET) tomorrow? That is 8:25 am (PT) your time FYI. I can send over a Google calendar invite ASAP. Love you Mom!”
- An actual message from me this past week
Can anyone tell me when I turned into a crusty 50-year-old business man who has to schedule a 15-minute-long conversation with my mom? (Also, someone who has a Google calendar?? Gag me!) The woman that birthed me, the woman who I spent every day annoying for five straight months in quarantine, now gets an email invite to listen to me rant about BC’s COVID testing policies, the unpredictability of the weather, and my new favorite font. (It’s Bookman Old Style, if you were wondering).
What has happened to us? We were once easily social butterflies! Now I have to schedule a convenient time to say “good morning” to my roommate. Are we just out of practice? After all, we did spend five months in intense isolation only to be thrown back into the fray come August. I mean, I would love to blame it on me somehow being busy and productive, but it’s more likely a mixture of the intense reductions in my productivity and the withering away of my social aptitude.
The double whammy of online classes and the de-densification of dining halls (and campus overall) means that no one’s bumping into anyone. And literal bumping into people is frowned upon due to the the 6 feet rule. What makes matters worse? The “BC look away” that we all used to joke about has morphed into an evil cousin: the “stare for too long trying to figure out if you know those eyebrows only to not figure it out until about an hour later in the middle of your Zoom lecture, but by then it’s too late so you just move on.”
Being social has now become a part-time job. You have to coordinate schedules and make a list prioritizing your time. (Hopefully not prioritizing a list of people’s importance, although that would be saucy and very Myspace top-ten-esque). We’ve been here for just over a month and lines have already been drawn ending friendships. You can no longer rely on the chicken and two sides line to let you catch up with your Chegg homework plug Jessica. Now you and Jessica rarely see each other because you don’t make time for her and she changed her login info so you’re on your own. (OMG, it was Jessica I saw today on the quad!)
The divide between the inner circle and outer circle of your life is closing in. It now feels too forward to actively make plans with someone you used to only casually chat with. So, what happens? You never see them! When we have to invest more of our efforts into friendships, we must inevitably narrow down our other projects. For you CSOMers, we are streamlining our investment portfolios! Gone are the days where we could diversify and own a tiny piece of the entire market. (That finance metaphor seems like a stretch and is probably not correct, but TikTok has made me feel like I have the authority to talk about finance, so just go with it please).
You might be thinking, “Macie I get it, you’re lonely and want more friends." You are indeed right, but that is not the point of this rant. (Although it will be the topic of the call scheduled with my mother later). After quarantine, we have all come to realize how important social networks are. Just because they now need more upkeep, doesn’t mean their value has diminished. It’s not weird to ask those acquaintance-level classmates to hang out, even if you have to send them a Google calendar invite! Instead of letting your outer circle disappear, just make your inner circle a little bigger. When it comes down to it, put the effort in. Stare just a few seconds longer at the girl in the quad and little by little you may realize that it’s Jessica, your Chegg Queen.