To be honest, I was never a sophomore at the University of Wisconsin, which is also the probable reason why I haven’t lived in the “sophomore slums.” (That’s how logic works, right?)
You might be reading right now, as a sophomore, in your cozy College Park living room.
I’m not in the “sophomore slums” you tell yourself, and my friends at The Hub are totally close to me.
If these thoughts have crossed your mind, there is a 99.97 percent chance you are living in the “sophomore slums.” It is scientifically proven, and I would cite a source but honestly it’s my third semester writing these things and I’ve given up on effort. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
Regardless of my senioritis, here are the key signs to note that you have indeed signed a lease in the “sophomore slums” and will be a resident of such for the next 11-and-a-half months.
There’s space in your rooms to do activities
One potential attraction to the “sophomore slums” is the spacious availability in the area. While many choose to stay in apartments that necessitate sleeping two-to-a-room in the other neighborhoods, single rooms are always an option in the southwestern neighborhood. Sure, you might be sleeping on the floor, the extra leg room is perfect for sprawling. Your living room might be large enough that you can actually live in it too!
You have windows
Everyone knows dungeon life is the best life. Windows are sometimes hard to come by in the sought-after neighborhoods to the east of campus. If you can see the light of day, that’s a pretty good indicator you are in fact in the derided “sophomore slums.” Take your Vitamin D in stride.
You use the Southwest Commuter Path for commuting
Honestly, this isn’t a very cute trail. There are no scenic trees or hills along the path. For “sophomore slums” dwellers though, the Southwest Commuter Path is needed for commuting. Sigh. Beware of bikes that populate this trail, you could be next.
You love your scenic view of Smith Hall
Smith Hall doesn’t exist, but you swear you can see it. You testify that can see eager freshmen creep in through its rounded entrance and appear to live normal lives inside of its air-conditioned confines. These, of course, are delusions. Smith Hall is completely made up by residents of the “sophomore slums” to make it seem like the neighborhood isn’t totally deserted. Out of all the mirages one could dream up, I’ve got to say Smith Hall is the weirdest of them all.
You’re constantly asked for addresses
Here, you might have to actually know your building number because many upperclassmen don’t even really know where Fahrenbrook Court is. Sophomore year is also that weird time where you technically shouldn’t be in bars yet, but turning up in Witte isn’t a viable option. Due to the aforementioned spacious living rooms, your apartment will likely be a prime spot for an occasion, or the house next to you, or the one across the street. This means your phone is the central hub for all of your underclassmen friends to text in for notifications on the latest hip happenings.
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McDonald’s is a viable part of your diet
Ever just have a craving for some McNuggets and Tangy BBQ sauce and think, “Oh, I can get those right now!”
Right, you only have those if your neighborhood borders Regent Street. Readily available frappes and fries are the hallmark of the “sophomore slum” experience. Of course, expect the rest of Madison to laugh at you as they eat their frozen dino nuggets instead, as obviously those are much higher class and peak luxury cuisine.
As clearly evidenced by this list, we here at The Badger Herald express our condolences to everyone who has found themselves cooped up in the “sophomore slums” this year. Save me a large fry from McDonald’s.
No, seriously, please. I can’t afford to pay $8 for another salad over here.