College is supposed to be the best four years of your life. For the most part, they are. With all those fun new people, reckless abandon, and the power of youth on your side, why wouldn't they be? Well, because reality bites. Uncle Sam steals all your money and those fun new people can turn out to be pretty effing brutal. (No, this humble author isn't just projecting his experience into writing.) Hindsight is 20/20, after all, and there are many things we wish we knew going into those "best four years of our lives." With spring break just around the corner, we polled our office, freelancers, cohorts, lovers, and friends to see what they wish they knew as bright, young, wide-eyed youths. And now we're giving it to you. Take note, but really, have fun. These are but mere guidelines for living your hashtag best life.
“That FOMO you have about your friends who are all pledging sororities and going to super-fun formals will turn into relief when you realize that you weren't part of an overpriced cult that forced you to wear horrible T-shirts and drink until you gained 20 pounds.” —Katie T.
“Drugs are way fun, but failing classes isn't. Actually, failing is more un-fun than drugs are pro-fun. Fun is a game of balance, and lack of sleep, drinking, and weed makes you all wobbly. Basically, make sure you have your shit in order by Thanksgiving break, by chilling and getting real about studying around Columbus Day. Going off the rails is what spring break is for." —A Grown-Ass Man
“No matter how broke you are, never go into the ‘gigs’ section of Craigslist, searching for ways to make extra textbook money. Think that's a landscaping job? Nope; it's porn. Think that old lady needs help cleaning up her garage? Porn.” —Lindsay S.
“Never do shrooms with your type-A friend. Ever.” — Hannah M.
“Avoid signing up for an 8am Friday class at all costs. You will miss it every week, without fail, and fail.” — Corey R.
“When your equally drunk roommate tells you he's good at tattooing, that doesn't mean you should let him do it.” —Ricky M.
“Jell-O shots at 3am, before you leave a party, are never a good idea.” —Rachel M.
“Not everyone in college is as nice as you are going to want them to be.” —Michelle R.
“Don’t cry yourself to sleep over student loan debt. It gets better with time…” — Vincent P.
“Stay away from the late-night dining hall! Pizza and fries at midnight equals a bad idea—even if it seems like a godsend at the time.” — Dianna G.