10 O’Clock List: Ways Liberal Arts College is Like my Nana’s Gated Community in Boca Raton, FL

It wouldn’t be the first time, but I’m about to turn an only potentially witty observation of similarities into and attempt at comedy.

  1. They both have uniform looking residence spaces. Whether we are talking about dorm rooms, college apartments, or condos and houses in South Florida– I have to point out that both take pride in making living spaces look like each other. In many instances, these are eerily and cult-like in a way that outsiders are unsettled by but insiders appreciate. Think NCAs. This also leads me to my next point.
  2. Cult Mentality. The thoughts going through the heads of retired people and people who have not yet been chewed up and spit out by American capitalism may be different (although oftentimes similar than you would guess– disillusionment is quite the common denominator) but the ways of thinking these thoughts are identical. Routine, behavior, and everything is culty. It makes sense to those who live there and freaks out those who don’t.
  3. Age Requirements. Well, to be fair, I’ve never looked up whether or not my Nana’s neighborhood requires you to be above 40-50 to buy a house there. And at this point I’m scared to check. But rules or not, the self-selection here is enough and leads to a specified age group. When else in your life could you possibly be around a group of people so close in age to you that shares the common experience of being alive for the same amount of time! Well, liberal arts college of course. Especially Kenyon, a self-proclaimed intentional community. We all choose to be here, around each other, and a big appeal of that is the fact that we rarely have to socialize with anyone that much younger or older.
  4. A Vibrant Social Scene. Whether the events are mahjong or tote bag painting, water aerobics or New Apt parties, neither of these places leave their citizens with a shortage of activity. And in the off chance that they do, you can always rely on the buffet to be a constant sight of happenings.
  5. Toxic Rumor Mill/Gossip Culture. I have never felt as judged in my life as I have felt in Boca, until I committed to Kenyon College and moved to Gambier. No matter which way you move, there’s a pair of shifty eyes tracking you. It doesn’t matter if their up-in-arms about who you almost maybe hooked up with last weekend (but didn’t because their roommate was already snoozing on the floor of their Leonard double) or whether or not you’re the grandchild with the drug problem. The sentiment is the same.
  6. Hella Jews. It’s okay guys my Nana lives in Boca I can say “Jew” on the internet And you can too.

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