Red flag alert: 13 obvious signs you still act like a freshman

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We were all first-year students at one point or another. But after going through our first few semesters of college, we thought we had all adjusted to Cal and were well out of that “freshman phase.” But we at the Clog have noticed many students, upperclassmen included, who still display quintessentially “freshman” behavior. Take a look below to see if you exhibit any of these telltale signs.

1. You still wear a lanyard for your keys and Cal ID.

If you wear a Pepsi advertisement around your neck or hanging from your pocket, it might be time to get a real keychain. Sure, it may be super handy to have easy access to your Cal 1 Card, but it gives off a “fresh from orientation” vibe.

2. You still freak out about getting a C on a midterm.

You may have been the top of your class in high school, but this is UC Berkeley, and you are no longer the biggest fish in the pond. Obviously, we all want to ace our classes, but sometimes even weeks of preparation for an exam may result in a less-than-spectacular grade. Perhaps in high school you never knew there were letters other than A on the grading scale. But after you’ve weathered a few college midterms, you’ve probably realized that sometimes getting a bad grade is normal and just a bump on the road to graduation.

3. You still wear your high school T-shirt (outside the RSF).

By all means, be proud of your high school. But now that you are in college, it’s time to trade that “Class of 20–” shirt for a “Beat Stanford” one. Unless you are using it to collect sweat at the gym, rocking your old high school uniform is a red flag that you are still living in the past.

4. You still don’t know your way around campus.

Assuming you have gone to classes, club meetings and events in various buildings, you should be reasonably well acquainted with the campus. If you have asked someone where Tolman or Pimentel is located, then congratulations: You have revealed that you are a freshman in less than three seconds.

5. You still talk about other colleges you applied to.

Offenders include those who are always quick to mention that they applied to whatever school we’re playing against in that week’s football game or those who talk about what life would be like if they had gone somewhere else. If college apps are still on your mind and you can remember what you wrote about for each supplement essay, then you have not yet truly embraced your new life here at Cal.

6. You add someone on Facebook right after you meet them.

Freshmen sometimes feel the need to be overly friendly because they are trying to establish connections in the mysterious new world they have found themselves in. While it is nice to form bonds, be careful not to seem too eager — you might scare off potential buds if you friend-request them 11 seconds after you finish a conversation.

7. Your room is decorated with free posters from Calapalooza.

Remember when you just had to find something — anything — to cover up the drab walls of your barren dorm room? Some of the worst offenders have even taped the cover of the BearFacts booklet they got at CalSO to their walls (a move we think even their first-year roommates probably deemed to be “too freshman”). Now that you have collected real memories of your time at Cal, we hope you’ve also been able to gather more meaningful and tasteful mementos with which to decorate your living space.

8. You are on the email list for 30 clubs.

Everyone is guilty of overloading on clubs during the first couple weeks of school. But usually, by the end of the first month, you’ve figured out which organizations you’re going to stick with and unsubscribed from (or at least tried to unsubscribe from) the mailing list of the other dozen organizations you put your name down for.

9. You still don’t know how to do laundry.

We all went through it: We’ve all spent an hour precisely following the WikiHow on how to wash your clothes only to have them emerge from the dryer three sizes smaller. But after a couple trials — and many white clothes dyed pink — you should be able to declare yourself a laundry master!

10. You keep thinking you are going to find “the one” everywhere you go.

The movies always make college seem like a land of romance first and an educational institution second. It turns out college is not quite the land of love it is promised to be, and while the person sitting next to you in the library could be “the one,” odds are, he or she will be just a person you ask to watch your stuff while you use the restroom.

11. You put a ton of effort into looking good for an 8 a.m. class.

After all, you never know when you are going to find “the one.”

12. Your profile picture is a picture from your prom.

Because it takes your mind off the fact that you still haven’t found “the one” yet.

13. You hate the dining commons.

You never realize what you’ve got until it’s gone. Just wait until you have to cook for yourself and are strapped for cash; then, those grimaces toward an unlimited buffet of warm meals will be traded for tears of longing. Are you complaining about fresh pizza, unlimited fruit, frozen yogurt machines and multiple main-course options daily? You are obviously a freshman.

Image sources:  quinn.anya under Creative Commons

Contact Pranav Trewn at [email protected]