By Andrew Spear (instagram: andrewspear1)
As that very special time of year in which it becomes too hot for a coat yet to cold for just a suit jacket, love and romance once again was in the air. The Battalion Ball was upon us, the most prestigious of all college events (so called because “UCC formal’ would be far to plebeian) to be held, as tradition dictated, at least a forty minute drive from the nearest residential neighbourhood. After my time at Battalion ball this year it is easy to see why Battalion Ball (or “Batt ball” as the cool kids are known to call it) is such a big deal at our school. I have summarized my night as such:
April 4th 2014: night of the Battalion Ball
5:00 Pm: after a short trip to Moore’s I have fulfilled another item on my bucket list by becoming the proud owner of a pocket square: that most high brow of accessories. I rush home in order to prepare myself for what is sure to be a night to remember.
5:30 Pm: Upon further experimentation, I have discovered that while pocket squares are simple in appearance, folding one is among one of the most difficult tasks I have undertook in the past year.
6:10 Pm: After 40 minutes on the Harry Rosen Website I have discovered that haphazardly shoving an unfolded pocket square into a pocket is, in fact, an acceptable employment of the accessory. Problem solved.
6:20pm: Fully dressed for the “pre-party” which starts at 7 o’clock sharp, I proceed to anxiously browse Reddit for half an out while I contemplate all the things that are most likely to go wrong during the night.
7:00 pm: This generation has apparently never heard of anything called punctuality, as I am the first to arrive at the pre. I talk awkwardly for 30 minutes with the host while I await the arrivals of the guests by eating Doritos.
7:50 pm: Everyone has arrived including my date. I talk awkwardly with her for ten minutes before she goes to talk to her friends in a corner of the room.
8:10 pm: We have entered a limo that is to take us to the venue. As I sit down I am hit with the full extent of my sobriety, that social anxiety. My jitters and inability to make casual conversation are incredibly evident to all those around me. “Man this kid is soooo sober” one party-goer states. Others agree to his supposition, and the entire limo comes to the inevitable conclusion that I am in fact extremely sober.
8:40 pm: After a 30 minute bus ride we arrive at the “Palais Royale,” which I am told is French for “royal palace”, so called because it is neither royal nor a palace. We are greeted by large men in suits who frisk me before letting me through. As I walk towards the long line of people ready to shake my hand I am reminded of an old quote from my tenth grade history teacher: “Caesar’s wife must not only be honest, she must appear to be honest.” I resolve to ensure that my appearance shall cause no doubt in my absolute sobriety and, strengthened by my new philosophy, I head towards the line of senior house advisors.
8:41 pm: I stumble on the steps leading up to the line. Mrs. Krstich asks me if I am ok, but my embarrassment causes me to sputter incoherently. Attempting to lighten the mood while shaking hands with Mr. Griem I attempt to make an economics joke which ends in some mumbling about supply and demand. Not a good start.
10:00 pm: I dance awkwardly for 50 minutes. My legs hurt. It’s too loud to talk to my date. I have been walking around for a while simply greeting people I know, and this being the formal of the school I go to I have greeted upwards of one hundred people while subsequently judging them on the physical appearance of their dates.
11:00 pm: We leave. I have no memory past this point. Facebook photos and witness testimonies prove dubious and unreliable.
Conclusion: 10/10 will reach next year.