Tag Archives: doors

Green Doors at Loyola University

Main Piece:

TF, a freshman at Loyola University Chicago, explains the lore of the Green Doors at Cudahy Library.

“So there are these green doors to our library and they only open on the first day of classes and on graduation every year. So on the first day of classes, freshmen will walk through them into the library. Then on graduation, the seniors will walk through them out of the library.”


TF is a freshman at Loyola University Chicago. She is a relative of mine and is in her first year in college. As a freshman she would have participated in the Green Door tradition very recently.


As a USC student, we do not have many traditions like this one. These is not many things or places that we can only go at certain times in our education. The concept of going through the doors represents how they are starting and ending their education through the same doors of the university. What this reminds me of is my college tours during my junior and senior year of high school when tour guides mentioned similar things such as seals and places that you are forbidden to go with the risk of not graduating if you go there. For Instance, Boston University has a legend where stepping on the university seal can put your graduation at risk (see http://www.bu.edu/articles/2019/boston-university-seal/).

Doors and Windows Saying

The interviewer’s initials are denoted through the initials BD, while the informant’s responses are marked as PH.

PH: Every time that I’m blocking something, specifically when I’m like walking by the television and my mom is watching TV and then I get distracted, and I start watching, and I’m standing in front of the television, and she says “you’re a better door than window!” Like, “please move, you’re blocking my way.” But it’s like a cute thing that she says.

BD: Did she get it from anywhere?

PH: I don’t know! I think it is a normal saying, and I think her mom used to say it to her, but I’m not sure.

This piece of folklore is a very lighthearted metaphor. I have never heard it before, but it does make an awful lot of sense. It is interesting how the informant’s mother had likely heard it from her own mother, and I speculate this saying may be relegated to only their family. The use of doors and windows draws the mind to think of houses and buildings, which may be an effect the metaphor is going for.