We’ve all been there. Inevitably you will head to a class alone (even a meal, if you’re feeling dangerous). But it’s almost always awkward. So what do you do? Do you stare at your phone and end up colliding into people? Do you look around and risk making eye contact with someone you don’t know? Do you speed up your walk to make conversation with the stranger with abnormally long strides, attempting to hide the fact that you’re jogging to keep up? These internally agonizing questions have stumped students for years. But never fear, fellow peers, be stumped no longer. Scholars worked tirelessly over the summer, concocting the following list to give you a few options for when you’re walking to class alone and trying to look ‘cool’ while doing so:
1. Listen to “Donda.” So trendy! Whether there is music truly playing in your headphones or not, it is entirely permissible to act as though you are deep in contemplation about the tunes going in your ears.
2. Fake a phone call. I suppose you could call your mom, but really who has that kind of time? The walk to class only takes about 10 minutes, not the 30 you would need to listen to hometown gossip from your dear mother. So put the phone up to your ear, give an occasional “Yup” or “Oh, really?” and walk on.
3. Engage in a very real, very intense text message conversation. With fingers flying across your phone, people are almost forced to assume that there is something very important on your screen. Maybe now is when you actually text your Mom? To the onlooker, you’re very busy, very engaged. Can’t go wrong.
4. Starbucks! Is it not a personality trait to walk across campus with a cup in hand, even swirling the cup so the ice rattles as you walk? Every few steps take an exaggerated sip, swirl some more, and there you have it! Albeit stereotypical, it’s foolproof.
5. Go entirely incognito. Throw on a hat, dark sweatshirt and maybe a mask if you want to stay both safe and unrecognizable. With your head slightly turned downwards, adhere to the mindset that you know no one, no one knows you. Walk straight ahead; no one will notice.*
Your fellow Irish students are incredibly friendly, however, so these tips are not inherently necessary. Still, we’ve all been there. Pick a couple or try them all. Walking alone will never again be so terrifying. Good luck Irish!
*Make sure to remain on high alert for scooters; they really zip by you.