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Second Chance

From Jenna Taft ’09:

Second Chance is a senior event. After discovering how hard it is to meet someone new with loud music and dancing, I decided we need another chance to meet our fellow seniors. A whimsical way to meet a random 09 you might not have known or maybe one of those people you always seen but have no idea their name and never got the chance to talk to.

This follows in the trend I see this year of community building events from the student body. Follow the link for more details, and a little opinion.

Each of senior received a questionnaire in their SU box. Simply fill it out and return it to the mailroom. Then, each senior will be matched up with someone who has similar interests to them. We will arrange a meeting time, a place and provide a fun date packet. Meetings (dates) will happen in November.

Also, note, it is not a dance. It is more like a JA date meets a Screw date.

EDIT @ 10:22 There is now no doubt, at least in my mind, that Ephs are more interested in community than we were a year ago. I have no idea where it came from, but thoughts on all campus community during your time here would be appreciated.

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#1 Comment By frank uible On October 17, 2008 @ 2:21 am

One’s determination that after over 3 years at Williams it is desirable to resort to a campus lonely hearts service is a sad commentary on the quality of the College’s social life.

#2 Comment By R Shepard On October 17, 2008 @ 9:25 am

Will, I would suggest that it has to do a lot with my class leaving, and the nature of the ’09 class.

My class was a socially fractured class, unlike the ’09s who all have common experiences: namely being the first class not to have the free agency system, and being the first sophomore class not having the opportunity to live in Mission Park.

These shared experiences along with the common griping that went along with them, helped foster this since of community among the ’09s.

Also, perhaps the neighborhood system is working after all, in terms of its goal of fostering community…Actually…nah.

#3 Comment By Soph Mom On October 17, 2008 @ 11:40 am

“Also, note, it is not a dance. It is more like a JA date meets a Screw date.

Will:
I almost hate to ask, but what does this mean? If the latter is just modern day lingo for a ‘one-night stand’, then at least define “JA date” for me.

#4 Comment By hwc On October 17, 2008 @ 1:16 pm

A “Screw” dance or party is an event where each student arranges arranges a blind date for his or her roommate. The discovery of the blind date’s identity may occur at a big public event where the roommate is told to, for example, dress as Juliet and “look for your Romeo”.

The term is short for “Screw Your Roommate”.

It’s a craze that swept college campuses in the early 1980s and is not an annual fixture on the social calendar.

#5 Comment By hwc On October 17, 2008 @ 1:18 pm

Arggg. That should be, “it’s NOW an annual fixture on the social calendar.”

#6 Comment By Will Slack ’11 On October 17, 2008 @ 1:25 pm

Screw dates these days revolve more around a party involving a few entries, where JA’s match everyone together. Some go well, some don’t, but they offer the chance to meet someone new.

JA dates are the period when the new JAs have to find their co-JA. They are known for getting creative near the end, when going to snackbar has gotten very repetitious.

#7 Comment By Soph Mom On October 17, 2008 @ 1:30 pm

Thanks for the clarification, HWC. At least it sounds a little more ‘creative’ than the title insinuates.

I suppose it was a bit crass of me to assume that it was just…well…but what would I know? I never understood the appeal of a ‘one night stand’ even in my youth, but each to his own.

And “JA date”? Same kind of thing, but arranged by one’s JA?

#8 Comment By Soph Mom On October 17, 2008 @ 1:36 pm

Thanks Will. We cross-posted.

Kind of another really stupid guess on my part as I don’t suppose JAs would ever want, or be expected, to set up dates. In fact, I would guess that sort of thing would be heartily disapproved.

Time to get back to work, before I say something else really dumb.

#9 Comment By hwc On October 17, 2008 @ 1:38 pm

Here’s a link to a Photo Slide Show of Screw dates discovering each other in a public setting, i.e. the dining hall in front of the entire campus.

I liked the Mr. Darcy/Elizabeth Bennett pairing, the Eminem/Elton John pairing, and the Daft Bodies pairing referencing this iconic You Tube video with over 4 million views.

#10 Comment By Rich Kelly On October 17, 2008 @ 2:09 pm

Years ago I worked for a very dysfunctional organization in serious need of “community building”. One event we used, which was quite effective, was similar to the “screw date” situation. People were paired up by a small group of us applying a reverse-dating-service logic; that is, we paired people who we thought had the least in common. The pairs had to have lunch together, and complete a small assignment.

Getting to know someone least like you, who you’d probably never have gotten to know otherwise, helps the community as a whole more than having individuals add friends to their own niche.

#11 Comment By Soph Mom On October 17, 2008 @ 2:20 pm

Pretty clever. And now I’m really feeling dated (especially, having never seen a video that’s considered “iconic”).

And the ‘daft’ piece is terrific! Seems almost amateur at first, and then evolves into what appears to have taken substantial choreography and rehearsal.

As a parent, I think you hear more about this kind of thing if you have a daughter. That’s my excuse anyway.

#12 Comment By hwc On October 17, 2008 @ 3:18 pm

The Screw Your Roommate dance is particularly ingenious for “community building” because setting up the blind date involves a four party negotiation with the Screwee’s roommates interacting as Screwer’s to put the date together.

I don’t think the original intent was community building. It was just fun.

If you google “screw your roommate”, you’ll get page after page of colleges that have these events. It seems like Stanford pops up in most of the articles attempting to give the history of the idea. Who knows?

The other one that’s popular is Assassins. There are variations, but at Swarthmore, it’s a dorm-by-dorm contest lasting over weeks in the fall. The goal is to be the last one standing. The goal is to kill your assigned target by grabbing them with two hands on the butt. Conversely, you have to be vigilant in guarding your own backside against your unknown Assassin. The only rules are that you can’t grab them when they are in their own room, when they are carrying a food tray in the dining hall, or when they are nude or wearing just a towel.

You are eliminated from the game when your assassin gets you. Once you have killed a target, you are assigned the killed person’s target and so the game continues — in dorms, in the dining hall, in the science labs, etc.

Assasins article.

It’s kind of funny to see future Truman Scholarships winners refered to as the “Assmaster”.

#13 Comment By Will Slack ’11 On October 17, 2008 @ 3:26 pm

#14 Comment By hwc On October 17, 2008 @ 3:26 pm

The Daft Bodies video was a response to the even more iconic Daft Hands video, now seen almost 25 million times.