Freshman year. It’s finally here. You’ve posted your commitment photos. You’ve made your obligatory “I love to go out but I also enjoy a quiet night in” Facebook post hoping to simultaneously seem effortlessly chill and social to your fellow incoming Badgers.

You’ve bought those 89-cent plastic bowls from Target for your dorm. And that futon that doubles as a bed … 😉

You’re 18. You’re unstoppable. It’s time to spread your wings, step on campus and finally enjoy the freedom — not just from the past year and a half of online school, masks and social distancing, but freedom from your childhood.

Rats of Madison: Jean Paul de RatatouilleIn an effort to broaden The Badger Herald’s student life section, I set out to interview some unique subjects we Read…

Freshman year is the time in a young Badger’s life where you get to enjoy freedom with none of the responsibility. You got a 2.6 in the first semester? You’re just AdJusTinG tO tHe ColLegE LiFeStyle. Chlamydia in the first week? The same excuse is applicable.

In all seriousness, freshman year is a wonderful, exciting, unprecedented time in your life where everyone is on the same page — nervous, excited, unsure of themselves, wanting to make new friends and fit in but not totally sure of how to yet.

All of the doubt and the uncertainty that comes with being on your own for the first time is 100% natural. Even if someone seems like they know what they’re doing, they don’t — they’re just better at hiding that they’re using Google Maps to get to Gordon than you are. There is nothing to be afraid of freshman year. Not. One. Single. Thing.

Well … I take that back.

POV: You’re a waitress at bottomless mimosa brunchMorning! It’s Saturday, 60 degrees, a beautiful spring day. Bottomless mimosa/margarita brunch is calling your name. It’s not what you Read…

So there’s one teeny, tiny, insignificant, unimportant detail no University of Wisconsin freshman year class has had to handle in almost a century. What is this looming threat, you may wonder? Well, it’s the barely-bigger-than-you Badgers. Sophomores who never got to fully experience their own freshman year.

It’s like when an immovable object meets an unstoppable force — incoming UW freshman versus the sophomores who never got to experience college in full due to Mrs. (Mr.? Mx.?) Rona.

This is how I predict the year is about to go.

What’s this? Sophomores??? At YOUR bars? Stealing all the brunettes at Riley’s? Clogging the line at Wando’s. Taking the cup night THEY never got to experience back by storm.

My side of the story: Why I stole a whole-ass treeYes, it was me. I was one of the ex-frat guys who stole that really expensive tree at The Arboretum. Read…

They’re back. And they’re hungry. Hungry for all the darties they never got to experience in full. Ravaged for those Saturday afternoons at Camp Randall singing “Build me up Buttercup” and “Jump Around” at the top of their lungs. Hell, I’m a junior writing this while listening to Build Me Up Buttercup right now and I’m tearing up a little.

They’re envious of the renovated — and no longer shitty — Witte and Sellery dorms sans a two-week-long lockdown. It’s a showdown between the class of 2024 and 2025 at UW in its full, packed, rowdy glory!

Not that I’m picking sides, but … best of luck, baby Badgers. Keep in mind that I’m no psychic or anything, so this is just a hunch, but don’t worry, you’ll see.

Anyway, never forget class of 2025, this is YOUR year. Welcome and as always, On Wisconsin!