Senior Wisdom: Monica Quaintance
Written by Bwog Staff
Claim to fame: University Senate, Alpha Chi Omega, Ski Team!, Capoeira, Bach Society, Rock Climbing, Ballroom Dance, and, lately, that girl that is always on the steps skipping class and getting sunburnt.
Where are you going? 60 blocks south!
Three things you learned at Columbia: The best things I learned here weren’t from the faculty (not even the fabulous Caterina Pizzingoni), as amazing as they are. All the best stuff comes from other students:
- How to convince a bouncer you are an Armenian exchange student that doesn’t speak English
- How to fake just about anything: a scary face; a fencing stance; a terrible Russian accent; or a scary face, in a fencing stance, while speaking in a terrible Russian accent, like Cliff Massey taught me freshman year
- How to not take things too seriously, because in the long run no one remembers that stuff anyway.
Justify your existence in 30 words or fewer: Sometimes, to bring them together, people just need a smile. Or they need a firecracker. Or a firestorm. If I could do that even once, it was all worth it.
Any war stories from the War on Fun? I think the worst part of the “war on fun” is the administration’s general attitude towards students. They treat us like a liability, not like a potential wellspring of creativity and school spirit, and that makes the whole campus hostile to new and exciting things. For example, I was there when facilities commandeered the giant snowball this winter, and that was really tragic.
Would you rather give up oral sex or cheese? I think I would actually not be able to survive without cheese, because on a no-carb, low-meat diet I am basically a cheeseatarian, if such a thing exists. Cheese is my primary food group, so I can’t really give it up, even though the alternative is incredibly devastating.
Any advice for the Class of 2014? Push yourself! I am, at heart, totally lame, and given the choice between a) going out and b) watching Battlestar Galactica in my pajamas I am always inclined to the latter. But one of my best memories is romping downtown with fellow then first-years, that at the time I didn’t even know, and getting cut in line at Misfits by Jessica Simpson (she is really short, by the way, and not that hot). It’s the things outside your comfort zone that make you grow. So go for it, what have you got to lose?
Any regrets? Never. It has become such a cliché, there is even an amazing Jimmy Eat World song about it, but I refuse to ever regret anything. Every choice you make turns you into who you are, even the crappy ones, and you learn so much more from screwing up than you do from accidentally getting anything right. So no, no regrets! But I am going to try and meet as many fellow seniors as I can before I graduate, because you are all amazing and it would be a shame to go without meeting you all.