This weekend, I once again attended the medical school's End of Basic Sciences Party. This is a formal event hosted by the 2nd Years, in order to celebrate their move from the classroom to the clinic. You might expect, from this description and the fact that the word "science" is in the title, that this would be a decorous meeting of young minds in which a perfectly appropriate amount of steam is let off in a perfectly appropriate manner.
You couldn't be further from the truth if it were Opposite Day.
Similar to an undergraduate "formal" event, EBSP is just another excuse for horny twenty-somethings to dress to the nines and rub up against each other. Cultural anthropologist that I am, I could not resist the opportunity to observe this species in its natural habitat. Also, I was told there would be an open bar. What I saw would shock the more blasé of bloggers. Please note that the following is not appropriate for small children, people with heart conditions, or my mother.
First of all, there was the blatant grinding. I was minding my own business at a table well off the dance floor, when I witnessed one young lady bend over in front of her dance partner and start shoving her buttocks into his crotch. I tried not to stare at her bosoms (put on display by her gaping neckline), but they were about a foot away from me and very jiggly. Then, to my mounting dismay, she braced her hands on the table, evidently to gain leverage. This caused the table to vibrate rhythmically, something that will haunt me to the end of my days. There was another young lady who was making the rounds, humping any and all available men. Seriously. I saw her grinding with guys who weren't even dancing, and one who was sitting down.
Secondly, there was the public drunkenness. Now, I am no stranger to 'tying one on,' as they say. The key is moderation (alternatively, close-lipped friends and a safe way home). When you are falling down drunk and security comes to escort you out, that is a signal that you have gone too far. Do not argue or ignore the security officer. And if you go to a place that offers an open bar but soon switches to cash, you grumble and pay up. You do not, under any circumstances, steal liquor. Before last night, I would have thought that these things were obvious. Obviously, I was wrong.
The most mortifying part of the night for me, however, happened on the dance floor. I have a sort of ... distinctive dance style. It is exuberant. It is uninhibited. It involves a lot of pantomime, flailing elbows, and stomping around in heavy boots. When I dance, I dance alone, with a wide space all around me. So it took me completely by surprise when someone braved my blast radius to tap me on the shoulder.
Me: *singing along* My out-fit's ri-di-cu-lous, in the club lookin' so con-spi-cu-ous! And ROWL -
Girl: *tap tap tap*
Me: Wha-? Oh, hello.
Girl: Hi! You're Sri, right?
Me: Um. Maybe...
Girl: I'm the student who will be shadowing you this summer!
Me: Well, isn't this awkward.
I fear this means I won't be able to inspire in her the same amount of hero-worship and awe with my mad counseling skillz. Which is too bad, because my skillz is fierce. Word.
So I suppose I shouldn't judge the poor little med students for letting down their hair (and probably, underwear) a bit. No one, not even me, escaped EBSP without egg on his or her face. Years from now, when they are respected neurosurgeons and dermatologists, they will look back on last night and have a laugh at their youthful med school indiscretions. And then they will call up their classmates to remind them that if they ever tell anyone how they made out with Dr. Greenblatt before he had his rhinoplasty, they will be very sorry.