I’ve witnessed and partaken in enough of them to know that your time at Kenyon, and Middle Path, is too long to ever avoid a sloppy, public breakdown. So when you find yourself feeling low and hugging a bench, and you’re not quite sure why, here is a helpful guide for figuring out just what’s causing that eruption of emotion.
The First Bench in Front of Old Kenyon.
- What Happened: This is the classic. You went out tonight really hyped for whatever sweat-drenched, beer-slinging, pizza-scrounging night Old Kenyon had in store for you — and it bombed. Your “person of interest” was DFMO-ing with your (now) nemesis, you lost your phone and K-Card somewhere among the stampede and now have to send one of those allstus, or the night just fell flat and no matter what substance you guzzled, the people were pushy, the music was loud and you were having no fun at all.
- Key Phrases: “I’ve just been working so hard,” “I really deserve just one good night,” “Fuck him/her/boys/girls/it/everything, I’m going home.”
The Last Bench Before the Ganter/Delt Lodge
- What Happened: You really didn’t feel like going out tonight, but everyone else was, and while watching Sleepless in Seattle in bed sounded far more appealing than walking all the way North, you haven’t had any new Facebook photos in a while and you were worried that some of your relatives were starting to think you were dead. So you pulled yourself up and and trudged all the way there only to be jostled and spilled-upon while everyone else was having fun.
- Key Phrases: “Now I’m not going to get any work done tomorrow,” “If I had just stayed in my paper would be done by now,” “Meg Ryan and Tom Hanks have more chemistry than he and I will ever have.”
Any Bench Near the Library
- What Happened: You just got out of class and are trying to make it back to your room before completely falling apart over the terrible grade you just got on your paper when a vague acquaintance waves to you and asks you how you’re doing, and because it’s the first time anyone has showed any interest in how you’re feeling in what seems like weeks, you start to say “Oh, fine, you?” but can’t, because you’ve collapsed on a bench and are now crying on their shoulder.
- Key Phrases: “And I’m just starting to think that maybe I’m not cut out for this,” “I went to his office hours three times,” “I feel like I’m always giving and giving and giving and I just never have any time for myself anymore!”
Either Bench Sandwiching the Gates of Hell
- What Happened: This is less of a break down and more of a forced time-out by your companions. They are trying to bring you home in one piece but you seem more focused on dangling off of their elbows and drooling about how much you love them. They sit you down on a bench to try to sober you up before attempting to make the last stretch of Middle Path. You’ve probably already been Good-Samaritaned three times by passers-by.
- Key phrases: “Fjkghgieiahosdlgihewa,” “Wioeiewo sdklahehihtve dsk blsah maaaaaaaaaaaa!”
Any Bench in the Stretch of What I Like to Call “Downtown Gambier”
- What Happened: You’ve been monitoring the package you ordered for weeks, and news of its arrival was the highlight of your day, and you rushed to the post office only to realize that it was after 4:00 p.m./a national holiday that only the Postal Service seems to honor.
- Key Phrases: Silence. Because you are brooding.