‘Drunk friends’ are not loose ends

It’s the weekend and you can finally go out to release the built-up stress of the previous week. Excitement for the night out is felt all around campus and the anticipation of debauchery is high. You start with your core group of friends, maybe your team, classmates, or roommate. These are the people you comfortably go to and consider your true friends. You study with them, eat with them, and now, you’re planning your night with them. After you’ve made your way into a party or dorm filled with numerous people you have never met, you branch out from your usual friends. All is well, however, because either people are numbed to awkwardness with alcohol or the party vibe helps to defuse the tension. This is when you make your “Saturday night friends.”

Whether or not you’re under the influence, the people you meet while out are deemed your best friends for the moment. In one night, a person can make many of these Saturday night buddies through mutual friends, random selection, or simply finally making the connection that you’re in the same environmental science class. This newfound bond is then cemented with plans for the future such as midweek lunch, study groups, or even an idea to travel across the country together. The hype of creating this friendship summons unlimited opportunities for the future.

Then, Sunday morning arrives. You take a walk to Dana dining hall for a good waffle with all of your favorite toppings when you spot them: your Saturday night buddies. At this point, you might not even remember the conversation you had or maybe you do, but all too often you put your eyes low and pretend you don’t really notice them. Ultimately, I am guilty of this too. In some cases, we go on for days or even weeks pretending the night never took place. We often separate our weekend lives from our “real” lives, as many admit. For those of you who do approach these Saturday night friends, I applaud you.  It takes courage.

Sophomore Kat Restrepo was one of these daring students. Kat recognized her two new Saturday night friends the following Sunday and surprisingly, their lunch plans came to fruition. She noticed one of the girls was from one of her classes. Unlike most Saturday night friends, they actually exchanged numbers (suggested if you actually plan to become friends). Kat explained, “We all texted about our exciting lunch plans Sunday morning – that’s when I knew it was legit. We all got lunch together the following week and had so much fun. We turned a Saturday night friendship into a real friendship!” They even plan to make lunch a weekly occurrence. Kat and her new friends are a testament that weekend friends can become real friends, too.

There is a culture of Saturday night friends, also known as “drunk friends,” being the best kinds of friends. Typically, people determine subconsciously that they only have to really talk to them on weekends when they see them, as if they’re off friendship duty for the rest of the week. Regardless of them being acquaintances or friends you’ve made, try to at least shine a smile at them the next time you see them. They’re probably in the same awkward position of “Do I say hi or not?” Why not? If they don’t remember you, at least you seem like a friendly person.

So make these weekend buddies, and then expand your circle. Even if it results in a simple hello every now and then, it’s better than the awkward searching through the sky to avoid eye contact. Go out this weekend with the hopes of making Saturday night friends, but also try carrying these friendships over into “real life” and see how it goes.

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