Quintessential Kenyon: Student Life, Uncut

Kenyon College Study Guide

Kate Lindsay
August 9, 2013

This summer has both flown and stalled. I have moments where the hours seem to just barely pass, like water dripping from a faucet, and then other times where I’m writing the date and can’t believe it’s already August. But why am I telling you this? If there’s anyone who is more uncomfortably aware of the passing of time, it’s someone about to leave for college. Some of you might be doing Pre-Orientation, while others are arriving on August 24th like I did. Either way, the time is coming up and you have to prepare. Here I present to you your first piece of homework. Below is a list of quintessential Kenyon (Hey! That’s the name of this blog!) terms, events, and jokes that are unique to this hilltop. Study time is now--the next four years is your test.


Kenyon married: This is the first thing that comes to mind when I think of annoying Kenyon-specific phrases. I hate this term because, like the word “hipster,” everyone has a different idea of what it means. The gist of it, however, is a couple who meets at Kenyon and starts dating and from that point on are never out of each other’s sight. They eat every meal together, live in the same dorm, only hang out with each other, and do essentially every unhealthy thing you shouldn’t do in a college relationship. Don’t get me wrong, relationships in college are extremely important. I’m a fan. But by relationships I mean every kind of connection. Connections with professors, yourself, your friends, and your romantic interests. It’s these connections combined that help you grow as a person, so make sure you allow yourself room for all of them.


Shock Your Mom: It’s likely you’ve already heard of this. It’s Kenyon’s thing, and it got picked up by a few publications, broadcasting it as a totally craaaaazy college party. It’s a party for the Men’s swim team for which everyone is instructed to arrive dressed in a way that would shock their moms. People take this in every possible direction. You get republicans/democrats, vegans/carnivores, goth/prissy, and essentially just naked. For your first year, it’s definitely a lot of fun. You get to spend the whole week before planning and curating your costume, and then you get to show it off, ogling all the other outfits and dancing in showers of beer.


The Cove: Technically, The Gambier Grill, one of Gambier’s two bars, but never make the mistake of calling it that. Refer to it by it’s old name and use it when it’s “Cove-o-clock.” By that, most people mean stumbling on over to it in hordes and ordering jello shots and dancing and all other sorts of tomfoolery that I can never participate in because I look fifteen years old and would never be able to sneak my way in but I’m not bitter at all about it nope not me. To compensate, my usual 1 AM weekend practice is to call The Cove, order cheese fries and Mac n’ Cheese wedges, and sit in bed getting delicious grease all over my laptop keyboard.


Big Cookie: When you hear this, I don’t care where you are, you run to Peirce. I shouldn’t really have to explain what this is, but I will anyway. Big Cookie is a big cookie. Usually on Fridays, what is normally the pizza station turns into a glorious heaven of pizza-sized cookies, varying from chocolate chip to M&M to chocolate with white chocolate and chocolate chips. I’d recommend scurrying to get it while it’s still fresh from the oven.


Kenyon cats: THIS IS THE BEST PART OF KENYON HANDS-DOWN. Okay, for me. It’s something I wasn’t even aware of when I decided on Kenyon and moved in, but it was an amazing surprise. Kenyon has feral cats. Lots of them. And I know the word “feral” conjures up images of dirty animals with frothing mouths, but these are the sweetest, happiest cats you will ever see. They curl up on benches, rub up against your legs on Middle Path, and give birth to litters of kittens outside of Gund Commons in front of an audience of bewildered students. They’re the bomb-diggity, and I highly suggest paying one a visit after you’ve moved in.