The Lens of an RA: Car Chases, Write-Ups, and Nights Spent Alone

ra spokeI always call my mom and tell her about each of my residents, and how they’re all doing. One of them is going to graduate in three years, thanks to the advice I gave her, and the rest of them think I’m pretty awesome. I mean, it’s been awhile since they’ve asked me about adjusting to college life or asked about what I did this weekend, but I’m, like, their cool older brother.

Also, my housing is free. Just saying.

Every Friday and Saturday night, I make my rounds. I love doing it—I knock on each door on my floor, and I get to hang out with each of my residents for like ten minutes. I love seeing all of them, but they are never successful in evading my watchful eye, looking for droplets of that “Burdette’s” vodka on their desks. I’m really good at my job.

One time, I saw a kid walk past my door to the bathroom really late Saturday night, and he stumbled out a half hour later. I motioned him down to a nearby couch, and lectured him about the dangers of alcohol. I know he looks up to me, so I thought he would listen, but this time, my wisdom seemed to be lost on him. He kept saying, “I just want to go to bed, please.” I put myself on the line every day for these kids, and what do I get? Some people can be so ungrateful.

Don’t chalk me up as a fuddy-duddy, though. Did you see the Harris Pink-Out? That party was a totally legit rager. We had candy, punch, cookies, soda, and there was even pizza, but don’t tell the residence hall director. That stays between me and my residents. We even got an SA from another floor to DJ for us, and it was awesome. Other nights, when we aren’t getting turned up, we sometimes like to cook and hand out pancakes at midnight, which is pretty wild, if I do say so myself. The Row thinks it’s got better parties than us, but believe me, I’ve seen it on all sides. I know what’s up—I know how to have a good time, and I’m one hundred percent sure my kids agree. No parents, no rules. Unless someone gets hurt during any of this, then we have to stop. Safety first.

When me and the rest of the Harris staff aren’t throwing down, or trying to get our residents to come out of their respective shells and hang out with us, I like to chill out in my room with a 24-pack of Mountain Dew or, if I’m feeling rowdy while writing a term paper, a Monster. Heck, sometimes I’ll guzzle two. I can really put it away. Energy drinks, I mean.

A job like this is only for the truly determined, the truly clever, the truly noble, like myself. You always got to be on your guard and you’ve got to be vigilant. But when I get back to my room at the end of the day, I know I’ve made a difference.

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