The Signal

Serving the College since 1885

Wednesday October 5th

From a Basement: Student unsure where the line between ‘icebreaker’ and ‘trauma dumping’ is

<p>From A Basement is a satirical column written by Miss Misery. This piece touches on the topic of inevitable icebreakers and the trauma dumping that they may sustain<em> (Navya Sinha</em>).</p>

From A Basement is a satirical column written by Miss Misery. This piece touches on the topic of inevitable icebreakers and the trauma dumping that they may sustain (Navya Sinha).

By Miss Misery
Correspondent

Disclaimer: This is a satirical piece and does not reflect a real event.

The start of a new semester opens the door for an abundance of possibilities — joining a new club, taking new classes, starting a new job — all of which come with the unfortunate caveat of having to meet new people. Perhaps you would consider yourself to be a “people person,” yet even those fond of meeting new people can concede that the typical small talk in “getting to know you” type conversations can be tedious.

A freshman at the College, who wishes to remain anonymous for fear of further embarrassing themself, has found a particular struggle in discerning the line between acceptable icebreaker and straight up trauma dumping on their peers.

“I went to an interest session for a fraternity on campus,” the student said. “Eventually we broke off into smaller groups. The group I was in started talking about pets and stuff so, you know, I told them I used to have a dog as a kid. That should’ve been a fine stopping point, but, and I couldn’t tell you why, I just kept going, eventually telling how my mom ran over the dog while backing out of the driveway to take me to soccer practice in fifth grade.”

Unfortunately, this students’ plight is not unique. In a campus wide survey, we found up to 82% of students felt guilty of some degree of trauma dumping when first meeting peers. In this survey, we also invited students to share particular experiences. Some notable instances of this type of oversharing were: “First we were talking about siblings then I explained to them about how, as the oldest child, I’ve never felt good enough for my parents;” “after discussing our home towns, I somehow got into the time I was six and was an eyewitness to an armed robbery at the local convenience store;” and “we were talking about music and I told them my favorite artist was Ed Sheeran. It was horrifying.”

While these students may have found discomfort in these situations, we still have not determined how it affects future chances of friendship. Alas, based on this single interview which we will use to generalize the student body at large, it does not appear optimistic.

“Well, I decided to never rush the frat,” the student said. “Sometimes I see guys from the info session. I’ll pass by them on my way to Eick, see them glance at me with slight recognition, and then remember that this guy knows more about me than my therapist and we’ll probably never talk again.”

What, then, would be the solution to help these poor students?

Well, it seems, when left to their own devices, students as a whole struggle with conversation skills. Therefore, we recommend three key phrases in conversation that are sure to keep the flow of the conversation lighthearted and friendly.

  1. “That’s politics for you!”

  2. “I actually think smartphones are making us less connected.”

  3. “Sir, you can’t take your shoes off inside the Applebees.”

Disclaimer: This is a satirical piece and does not reflect a real event.




Comments

This Week's Issue

Issuu Preview