The do’s and don’ts of Whitman parties

Hailey Livingston, Columnist

Illustration Paloma Link.

The past year, every weekend has been pretty much the same: Yik Yaks and Instagram posts begging “Parties tonight?” followed by comments saying something along the lines of “better luck next time.” 

That’s probably for the best. Well, it was definitely for the best. With COVID-19 posing as a constant threat, obviously we weren’t going out of our way to party and potentially get ourselves and our classmates sick. 

Whitman never suffered any huge COVID-19 outbreaks, which I’m sure is partly because of the lack of parties, but students did suffer a major loss in morale. Before COVID-19, parties were the one thing students could agree on. Greek or non-Greek, STEM major or theatre—everyone came together Friday night with a handle of Vitali in hand.

Last semester was better, while also being terrible. Once again, for the best; COVID-19 was still pretty darn bad. That doesn’t mean there were no parties—there were just bad parties. People huddled on front lawns, the alcohol running through their veins the only thing keeping them warm. 

The nights ended early, people meandering off the lawn before midnight. Naturally, these flops of parties were followed by more Yik Yaks in disappointment. 

It’s been tough. Parties bring us together, and we haven’t had a good one since 2019. 

Whitties, it’s happening. The time is now! 

Last week, after what feels like decades worth of waiting, we received an email from Kathy Murray regarding masks. She said, “Indoor public spaces will become mask-optional for everyone who is up-to-date on the COVID-19 vaccine,” and most importantly (for you party animals) “We will remove the five-person limit for social gatherings.”

Things are looking up, but we need to remember where we started. I, for one, am beyond enthused to get back out there and regain some social normalcy. That said, I want to review some party do’s and don’ts:

Do: Remember, people live where you are partying.

Don’t: Steal fun knick-knacks—lighters are always okay though. 

Do: Get tested, get vaccinated. If you’re not, get out and go home. We don’t want you at our party.

Don’t: Get so drunk you’re a menace. This includes: puking on floors, grabbing girls’ waists, throwing things, pushing people… must I go on?

Do: Bring the host a Walla Walla sweet onion. That’s generally how freshmen get into any good parties. 

I could go on and on with what you should and shouldn’t do at parties, but I trust you can figure out some party etiquette on your own. It’s been a long time since we’ve all had the opportunity to party together, which means we have the chance to rewrite Whitman’s party culture. 

There are a lot of aspects of Whitman’s party culture that we should absolutely keep. For example, I love the way girls look out for each other at parties. I’ve seen drunk girls team up to get another drunk girl home, it’s beautiful. 

We need to get rid of other things. I’m trying my best to not turn this article into a sexual assault rant, but my moral compass will not allow me to write an article about parties without at least mentioning what is a huge problem on our campus.

We’ve grown comfortable on campus the past few years during COVID-19, and while that’s great, we need to remember to be safe. I’m sure when we get back to campus from spring break, the alcohol is going to be flowing. Remember that rape happens everywhere, even here. 

Coming back from spring break, let’s have fun, be safe and party. Get your shots, take your tests and let’s rage.