There’s this guy named Joe Webb. He’s a doctoral student at St. Louis University, and he writes a blog for college students that is awesome. In fact, I find much of his information useful and you know I’m waaaaaayyyyyy past that life phase. He is funny and irreverent, two things I hope I am sometimes, and he is refreshingly honest. Here’s what a column at STLtoday.com had to say about him:
“Webb, who teaches and studies at St. Louis University, has quickly gained a national following with his blog, www.dr-wizard.com. A couple of times a week, he posts meandering ruminations on life and pop culture that end with offbeat, humorous and no-nonsense lessons on how to survive and succeed in college. He’s a doctoral student in English as well as an instructor at SLU. So his counsel might be more described as that of an older brother who is also a professor. His age helps, too. He’s 28.”
You can read the whole article about him at STLtoday.com or Check out the full list of Dr. Wizard’s advice columns here.
Below are excerpts from the one I find most relevant to our purposes:
LESSON #15: GO ON DATES
“It seems like every week, someone in the English department will post an article from the Chronicle of Higher Education on his or her office door lamenting the fact that “26% of college graduates can’t correctly make change” or “43% of American collegians can’t pick out China on a World Map.” Now, obviously, these are problems that need to be addressed – because, in my opinion, a third-grader who can’t do these things should be labeled “a little slow.” But, there’s another problem with our college graduates that I never see addressed in the Chronicle – and that is that 94% of America’s brightest young pupils (which, given the whole “change-counting” thing might be a bit of a generous label for “college graduates”) leave their alma mater with absolutely no idea how to date. And this is just a DISASTER.
…..the majority of you don’t date in college because it is just too damn easy to hook up with a girl for the night. If things go well during the initial encounter, you then simply continue to hook up with the same girl for a period of two weeks to six months, until you are either forced to acknowledge the arrangement as a “relationship,” or, because you find relationships scary, you are forced to begin hooking up with someone new. If you choose the latter, you will get high-fives from your other single buddies after explaining to them that “a player’s gotta play.” If you choose the former, you will then take the girl with whom you have entered “relationship”-status to a formal dance twice a year, and this experience will constitute your semi-annual date….
…after you graduate, you will never again be able to invite a girl who you haven’t even had coffee with to accompany you and one hundred of your fraternity brothers to Niagara Falls for a weekend of formal wear, Jello shots, Kanye West, and a night at the Radisson. It just doesn’t translate past the age of 24.
And so, this now leads me to a discussion of the two biggest reasons why you should learn to date in college:
The first – YOUR HEALTH. Hooking up leads to more sexual partners, less use of protection, and therefore greater risk of contracting sexually transmitted diseases or producing a child. Let’s think about both of these options in terms of the mainstream media. You know how the people in the Valtrex commercials seem to be quite happy to have Herpes and act like it’s their privilege to take pills three times a day? They’re trained actors and actresses who don’t really have the disease. If they did, they’d look a lot less comfortable sitting on that park bench. And, as for the unexpected pregnancy issue, let’s consider the movie Knocked Up – just in terms of the random sexual encounter as a means of selecting the person whom you are going to raise a child with for the next 18 years. Guys, listen to me. That girl you sleep with after thirteen tequila shots doesn’t usually end up looking anything like Katherine Heigl – she probably looks more like Carrot Top. On the flip side – girls, the random guy you sleep with after eight apple-tinis usually does look a lot like Seth Rogen. This doesn’t happen if you go on dates first, then have sex.
The second – YOUR FUTURE GAME. In the United States, the average age at which males get married for the first time is 27.5; women get married around the age of 26. Do the math. This means that most of you will not be marrying one of the people you hooked up with in college. Throw in those average-lowering “courtship” specialists and the guys from your high school who went straight to Diesel-Mechanic School, and it’s a pretty safe bet that you’re going to have to navigate the grown-up mating world for at least half a dozen years. What you’ll quickly find is that the people who are still hooking up at bars on weekends are not the type of people who you want to be in a long-term relationship with. All of the sudden, you’re like Willie Mays Hayes in Major League 2: your college game was big enough to hit home runs in the University-world that is Life’s Spring Training, but once you enter the regular season, all you’ve got is the kind of warning-track power that leads to long, pathetic put-outs. The guys who can hit major-league home runs with doctors and lawyers and architects and graphic designers are the guys who’ve had substantial practice at asking girls out on dates, and who know how to operate in date-situations. So, start learning now. For the same amount of money that it costs to buy thirteen shots of tequila and eight apple-tinis, you can afford to meet a girl once for coffee, follow that first date up with Thai food and a movie, and still have enough money left over to send her flowers and a card the morning after you first make out – all without contracting one single case of the clap.”