My informant, AK, is a 19 year old student at the University of Michigan. She was born and raised in Southern California and is studying engineering. While in high school, AK was an active member and team captain of her school’s swim team. She attended the school from kindergarten until she graduated and knew the place inside and out. (I’ll be referring to myself as SW in the actual performance).
AK: For as long as I can remember, it’s been tradition at our high school to make a fake name on facebook for senior year. Everyone would make a pun based off their name, referencing a movie or celebrity. When it first started, it was to protect people’s identities, so that of prospective colleges looked up students on facebook, they wouldn’t find their page. By the time we were seniors, there wasn’t really a need to do this because it was general knowledge that colleges didn’t really care, but our grade kept on with the tradition anyways.
It’s interesting to understand where some aspect of folklore comes from, and to see how its meaning has changed over time. What started as a superstition morphed into a tradition that stood to be a rite of passage. Kids as early as freshman year would begin to think about their senior name, anxious to be done with high school and on their way to college. Senior names were a way of expressing yourself, while also engaging in a unifying experience across the grade.
“A lot of Sorority girls at CSUCI have fought over who gets to live in a Sorority apartment building like most sorority girls at other schools would fight over living in the Sorority house. To call something a Sorority apartment came from a stupid law in Camarillo from the olden days that prohibits more than ten unrelated women to live in the same house, so sororities have gone around the issue by leasing specific buildings in apartment complexes around the school. That’s how the term came to be!”
SM is from Camarillo, California and has grown up in the area since he was born. He says he knows this from his sister who went to CSUCI and was in a sorority that had to do this. He remembers specifically being confused about why her friends would always call it the Sorority apartments cause on TV, people would always talk about sorority houses, but never apartments.
SM is an old high school friend of mine. I invited him to a Discord server and I watched him play The Witcher. He was open to talk about folklore of the area we grew up in during cutscenes he said he had already watched when he had played the entirety of the game before.
Folklore acting as a sort of counteraction against a law is nothing new, but the fact that it has stuck around as long as it has is impressive. The saying of this word must come out of a unique sense of being and is probably not just specific to CSUCI sorority girls, but CSUCI students as a whole. It must be somewhat nice for this folk group to know they get to say something that would seem a bit odd to the average person, but completely relatable and even political to those who knew the issue.
Main Piece: One myth I heard about coronavirus is that tequila or any hard alcohol kills the virus. This is something I’ve heard not just about the virus but when you’re sick in general. It’s based on the fact that alcohol is normally a sanitizing agent so drinking alcohol would sanitize your body. The joke would be set up when someone is feeling slightly ill. Then when someone else hears about the illness, they sarcastically say that they should go take a shot of tequila.
Context: The informant is a current junior at Cal Poly SLO. She is one of many students that were removed from her school due to the Coronavirus pandemic. She encountered the joke from her classmates and peers.
Thoughts: This joke shows off the stereotypical college experience in which people drink a lot. This joke stems from another folk belief that alcohol sanitizes your system for any disease. I think it’s just another excuse for people to drink alcohol.
The following is transcribed from a conversation between my friend, identified as SK, and myself, identified as GK.
SK: I want to tell you about a game I have been playing with my buddies at college called “Beerio Kart”. It’s a drinking game that involves the video game “Mario Kart” and is super competitive. So the basic objective of the game is to be the first player to finish the race while at the same time finishing his/her beer. However the catch is that you must completely stop driving and drop your controller while you’re drinking the beer as it is illegal to drink and drive. So the game becomes pretty strategic because of this rule.
GK: So what’s the best strategy for this game?
SK: It really depends. I usually do all the driving first, so I know how much time I have to chug the beer. However, I have friends who will chug at the very beginning so they could play from behind the whole race and get the best items in the game because of it. There are also people who will take stops after each lap to drink the beer at a steady pace while keeping up with the other opponents in the Mario Kart race. I would say my strategy is the best, but to each their own.
Background: The informant knows of this game from college. He says that his roommate during his freshman year taught him the game, and that they would often play with the other guys in his dorm. Due to the fact that the new Mario Kart is on the Nitendo Switch, up to eight people could play at once. The game serves as a fun way for the informant and his friends to compete with one another while drinking.
Context: The informant and I discussed this game over Face Time.
My Thoughts: This game, in my opinion, serves as a great way to compete with friends while at the same time expanding the entertainment of Mario Kart even further. The courses start to get boring after a while, so adding a whole new aspect to the game really spices things up. It also illustrates the rise in popularity that video games have taken amongst the college demographic. For the longest time, I always thought video games were mainly played by children, and when they were played by adults, that those people were weird. However, with the creation of platforms such as Twitch, video games being played by older people have become more acceptable in society. I also believe that the multiplayer aspect that the Nintendo Switch offers makes the game more appealing to college students living in a dorm because they can compete with one another easily.
The following is transcribed from a conversation with the informant, CZ.
CZ: So here’s how the pickup line goes: “If I was to ask you out right now, would your answer to that question be the same as your answer to this question?
GK: I don’t really get it
CZ: It’s a bit confusing, but here’s how it works. First of all you need to split it up into the two questions because it could be a bit difficult to explain. So in this case:
“Will you go out with me”?
“Will your answer to (question #1) be same as the answer to this question”?
Question #2 will be the answer she gives you, because that is, in essence, the question you are asking her. And as it turns out, the answer to Question #1 will always be “yes”. Here is why:
Answer in terms of Question #2
Answer to Question #1
No, the answer to you asking me out will not be the same to the answer I just gave you.
She said “no” meaning the answer to Question #1 is “yes” because the answers won’t be the same
Yes, the answer to you asking me out will be the same to the answer I just gave you.
She said “yes” meaning the answer to Question #1 is “yes” because the answers will be the same
Background: The informant is a 20 year old college student from Indiana. Like a lot of people his age, he likes to use pickup lines to hit on women either in person or on dating apps. He says to have found this one online, and has has used it on Tinder before.
Context: The informant and I discussed this pickup line over Face Time.
My Thoughts: This pickup line is interesting because I feel like it breaks the mold of most other pickup lines. This one really makes you think about it, while other ones are cheesy and are easy to pickup on. That makes me wonder about the success that this has, because it took me a while to figure out what he meant by this. I would be inclined to think this would be more successful on a dating app because you are not talking to the person face to face, which gives the recipient more time to think about the question. If you were to try this pickup line in person, I feel like it would lead to an awkward silence, due to its complexity. This pickup line also made me reflect on how technology has influenced dating amongst a younger generation. People are now able to swipe on profiles, making it way easier to find love connections. I feel like this is bad for society because it takes away the human interaction that was needed to accomplish this before the rise in dating apps.