Freshman Experiences

“Hey, I don’t want to alarm you, but I’m naked.”
This wasn’t how I wanted to start my first official day of college. Up until this point, everything was going according to plan. I had my alarm clock set up so that I could wake up at 8:30 (I woke up at 6am for high school, 8:30 should be a breeze in college, right?). I would get dressed, go for a short run, shower, eat and show up to my 10:30 class at 10:15 and then officially be a college student taking college classes at a college. What I did not anticipate was getting locked out of my room at 9:45 without my keys and nothing but a towel. It all played out like a bad movie: I left the bathroom, walked to my door, grabbed the handle, turned it….and sh*t. I kept thinking, “This is the first time anyone has given me any real responsibility and I have already managed to screw it up.” It was time to suck it up and live out the old first day of school nightmare where you’re naked and everyone else stares at you. I walked down my hall, which felt like a quarter mile, to my RA’s room. After knocking for what felt like an hour, he finally answered. I had woken him up which marked the start of a very embarrassing and unfortunate morning. He let me use his cellphone which I used to call TUPD. The conversation went as follows:

Me: Hi, I locked myself out of my room and my roommate has a class, is there a way I could be let back in?

TUPD: Yeah, what’s your ID number?

Me: I don’t know.

TUPD: Well what’s the address of the hall you live in?

Me: I don’t know, it’s Houston Hall.

TUPD: Are you a freshman?

Me: Could you tell?

TUPD: What’s your name?

Me: Matt Stewart.

TUPD: Well come down to the TUPD office on Boston Ave and we’ll give you a new key.

Me: I’m naked.

TUPD: Sorry, what?

Me: I can’t walk down to your office because I’m naked. The only thing I have right now is a towel.

TUPD: *sigh* Ok, we’ll send an officer down with a key to open your door.

Me: Hey, thanks. Don’t arrest me for streaking when you get here.

TUPD: The officer will be there shortly. Wait in the lobby so you can let them in.

I was thinking that I could just hang out in the bathroom, but I had class in half an hour and needed to let the TUPD officer in. I went down to the lobby, naked, with nothing but a towel, enduring stares of fellow freshmen as I used the main steps in Houston Hall. When I reached the lobby, I quickly hid behind the vending machines in the lobby so I could avoid being seen, while keeping an eye out for the TUPD officer. After about 5 minutes of hiding, a female student approached the vending machine in front of me so that her back was to me. At this point, 2 scenarios were playing out in my head: One, I could say nothing and hope that she would never see me. If she did see me, it would be very awkward for the both of us. Or two, I could just let her know that there was a naked boy standing right behind her and experience the embarrassment head on. So, that’s how we arrive at, “I don’t want to alarm you, but I’m naked.” She turned around slowly and looked at me with a face composed of half smirk and half shock.
“Good luck with that.” She said, and walked away briskly. Shortly after that, the officer came into the building, without my assistance, and helped me open my door. No other freshman experience thus far has been able to stick to me like this one. All my friends and family members now refer to me as “a goddamned idiot”, but it could be worse.

The whole fiasco is what many might call “a rookie mistake.” But, that’s what I am, at least for now: a rookie.

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