Nothing brings out the drunken college kids like the first vaguely warmer days of spring. (We drunken out-of-college kids drink proudly and consistently, heedless of weather.) So suddenly, here they are. And they're confusing us. To help us understand the folkways of this exotic tribe, we asked Gawker Mascot and amateur anthropologist Andrew Krucoff to don his trusty pith helmet, enlist earnest documentarian Nikola Tamindzic, and head to the remotest depths of the Central Village — the native habitat of this unusual people — to investigate. After the jump, his reports of beer pong, fake IDs, and the dreaded Look of Shame.
The month of March can be a rough one for college students — there's a cruelly calculated collision of midterms, formals, St Patrick's Day, thawing temperatures, Spring Break, and the NCAA basketball tournament. It's the time of year that fungus grows wildly on bedrock advice like, "You can always re-take a class but you can't re-live a party." Madness, thy name is earned.
To re-enter that world I left so many half-baked moons ago, I enlisted Streeter Seidell, co-author of CollegeHumor.com's soon-to-be released Guide to College, to organize a pleasant, nocturnal walking tour (OK, "bar crawl"), blogger Manhattan Transfer who knows a thing or two about local drinking establishments, and Dodgeball Maps to track our activity through the evening. Please join us and watch your step on the NYU Vomit Trail.
After a brief warm-up at College Humor's Tribeca HQ (#1, 9:16PM) for ping-pong and The Warriors stand-up arcade style (basically an XBox shoved into a branded console cabinet) we were led by an NYU sophomore to Lafayette Hall (#2, 9:55PM). If we are to believe the Hong Kong Student Association's Guide to NYU, then "Lafayette is located in Chinatown and is known as the party dorm." These are two facts which we will not dispute.
Entry past security was tougher than boarding Air Force One, and I expected a psychological evaluation before entering. When we eventually got to the gate and wiggled our way back to coach, we were rewarded with miles of (drum and joint roll)... COLLEGE!!!
The Violet Femmes of NYU were cradling 40s of Coors Light. Always classy, sometimes gassy.
But in any variation of the game, girl-on-girl boob licking is highly encouraged as a means to distract your opponent and enthrall the crowd.
Or, if you ask nicely and promise not to touch, free peeks might be available. Also, if you couldn't tell by now, that's a Slip-n-Slide tacked to the wall.
The Patron Saint of College Binge Drinking, John 'Bluto' Blutarsky, hangs on the wall as a subtle reminder that it's OK to fondle breasts when wearing a Lance Armstrong wristband.
SOCIALLLLL (!!!) networking is cool, apparently. Facebook.com has facilitated over 1,000,000 sexual acts by consensually drunk students.
Now for a brief interruption to tell you about two new classes from the Gawker Course Catalog:
Applied Drunkenomics: The Bong Tail Theory
The era of the "blockbuster" party is over and the price elasticity of the Pleasure Principle has been stretched and snapped into the millions of niche gatherings at the shallow end of humanity. Guest speakers include Wired's Chris Anderson and Drink Club's Mykel Board
Card Game Theory for Dormies
Studies the competitive and (mostly un-) cooperative behavior that results when several parties with opposing interests must work together to avoid cock-blockage and debt collectors. Learn how to use card game theory to analyze situations of potential conflict for maximum exploitation. Final exam involves throwing a card through a watermelon rind.
So the pre-game portion of the evening was over and it was time to hit the mean streets. Have 20 people in tow? Leave the pros at home and stink-up the 6 train from Canal to Astor Place.
We became "those people" when Mr. Freshman decided to show off his monkey bar skills and spilled the beer deftly hiding in his coat. Even a homeless man moved away from us.
We arrived safely, if not entirely dry, and after the requisite good luck spinning of the Astor Place cube for better lays, we headed to Roll-n-Roaster (#3, 11:47PM). Neighborhood blogs like Gothamist and Curbed don't write about it, but the Sheepshead Bay institution has an admirable outpost in the East Village. It may become our new home. Why?
Answer: $3.75 pitchers of beer!! (I mean, iced tea, dear NYU officials.) Plus, food fit for the intestinal fortitude of Tony Soprano. This picture is obviously the evening's money shot. Three points, all fishnet. It reeks sweetly of college on every level.
Next we headed to Euro-football hangout Nevada Smith's (#4, 12:26AM), Man U-obsessed by day but NYU-infested at night, where we were greeted by a bouncer who was stingier than Petr Cech in goal. All but a few of us were booted by the legal ID test so we took our red-faced cards to Cooper 35 Asian Pub (#5, 12:35AM) where the barrier to entry was considerably lower.
As was the talent, but we made creepy, crawly friends.
Cleavy ones, too.
This breast thing is nearly impossible to escape. Unfortunately the too polite faux-lesbo vibe to this picture would even make their parents approve.
We gave one last salute to Asian Pub and a toast to the girl who made me order her a "woo-woo" but then refused to drink it. Note: this is poor form no matter how young or old you are. D minus.
Last stop of the evening was at Josie Woods Pub (#6, 1:21AM), the Rheingold-standard in underaged undergrad NYU bars. A basement level place described here as "Probably the worst bar I've ever been to, but NYU youngsters and guys huntin' illegal tail seem to love it here. But for anyone with an ounce of class or the desire to not be ogled like you're in a porno, go somewhere else." In other words, this place was awesome.
These guys were with us all night and talked a good game of how easy it is to hook up. "Dude, NYU is the best college for guys. 60/40 girl/guy ratio and 30 percent of the guys are gay. Do the math." Hold on to your abacus, fellas. The interlocking chug of brotherhood solves another equation. Better known as the "the null set."
On the other hand, if you really want to impress a girl, the best make-out sessions are usually held in locations with high sanitation standards. Like bathrooms.
And the subway.
As for the rest of us, who knows. I can only speak for myself — I passed out on my couch nuzzling with a doner kebab sandwich. Got the Look of Shame from my roommate the next morning.
Just like college.