Julia Juliana Stone ’12 writes on her first year at Williams.

Two Friday nights ago our junior advisers set us up on random dates with other freshmen. We got dressed up and met our dates and jumped around to ’90s dance music and some other weird techno stuff.

My date was a varsity football player named Eric (names have been changed to protect the guilty) who wore a Red Sox baseball cap – ewww. I should’ve known his judgment would be seriously impaired.

He ditched me after 2-1/2 hours for another girl, which was fine because my friend Hannah and I choreographed original dances to SClub7 and watched “True Lies” in the common room the rest of the night. That movie is weird.

I turned in my first real college paper earlier this week. It was eight pages of Gaventa’s theory on the third-dimensional approach to power, in terms of Scott’s hidden transcript and a bunch of fancy words I used to make it seem like I know what’s going on even though I probably don’t.

When I registered for Justice and Power: A Study of Political Theory, the course catalog said preference was given to philosophy majors, which I thought meant that they would be given priority if the class was over-enrolled.

I can’t find that class in the catalog but I would advise against using “fancy words” in any paper for a Williams philosophy professor. Joe Cruz et al are not so easily fooled.

What it really means is that you need to be BFFs with Montesquieu and have an extensive background in philosophy, but of course I’m a freshman and no one told me.

The kids in my class are mostly super-articulate juniors and seniors who bring double espressos to class and actually understand Arendt. I tried to pose them and drink my coffee black in class on Tuesday morning, hoping it would inspire some Aristotelian thinking. It didn’t. I need the milk.

I didn’t start the paper until 10 the night before it was due because I had to study for a calculus midterm, and I kept putting off writing the paper because I knew it would totally consume me once I started it and I had to prepare myself for hibernation.

I should have started earlier. I was in the library working on the paper until 3:30 in the morning – my mom right now is probably doing the Debbie Reynolds “I told you so” dance from “Will & Grace.”

But the coolest thing was that five or six other kids in my class were in the library at 3 in the morning working on their papers, too, and a few of us were writing on the same topic.

We brought coffee and chocolate and those huge cartons of Goldfish to the basement of the library and had a dialogue about Scott’s theory of the hidden transcript versus the public transcript and how it relates to quiescence.

It was exactly the kind of totally clich intellectually stimulating late-night debate you always see in movie-college that I hoped would happen in real-life college.

Indeed. Welcome to Williams. Make the most of your four years.

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