Not really in the mood to be sent home again.
( Sophia Sanders / Rowdy Magazine Graphic Designer)
After spending months in isolation, reentering a campus filled with over 30,000 people is a surreal feeling to say the least. Since March this year, human interaction has become increasingly rare. I couldn’t even remember the last time I had hugged my friends.
So, while campuses reopening may seem like cause for celebration, I’m here to remind you that partying doesn’t make you look cool, it makes you careless. Clearly, some of you forgot how to act.
Having the chance to go back to your college town is a privilege. It’s a small step towards some kind of normalcy with immense responsibility for yourself and your peers. And we’re already screwing up. All we have to do is look at other major universities and how this situation is unraveling. The most recent numbers from University of Alabama show that since reopening, over 1,200 students and 166 staff members have tested positive for COVID-19. I personally find those numbers terrifying and you should too.
The energy in this TikTok is the energy I will maintain for the entire fall semester. If I see one more maskless rush post or a video of scattered red solo cups, I’m going to lose it. Don’t think I won’t tell on y’all.
That being said, wearing a mask is the literal bare minimum, and even that seems to be a challenge.
Just as a general rule of thumb:
if you’re leaving your apartment or dorm, wear the damn mask. And wear it correctly — yes, that means covering your nose!
Don’t be the guy that people avoid getting into the elevator with.
And while this next piece of advice seems obvious, my Snapchat stories say otherwise. It doesn’t matter if it’s bid day and you want to have every single one of your sisters over. It doesn’t matter if all the Midtown bars have opened and you really missed Salty Dog. I’m sick of seeing people pretend that this is somehow OK.
And clearly, so are others.
Two UF students created an anonymous Instagram page called @maskoffuf to hold their classmates accountable and I’m here for it. When asked about their intentions for the page, the owners expressed that they originally got the idea from a similar platform at Florida State University, @maskupfsu (previously @maskofffsu). Born out of pure frustration, the owners state that they think the account will show that “students around them are watching.”
I know that being back on campus creates a false atmosphere of regularity, but we have to remind ourselves and others that the current state of the world is far from normal. I truly dream about the day when I can have a fishbowl at Tatu and dance with strangers, but that night won’t be here for a while. Especially if we don’t come together and stick to small circles.
I really wish we didn’t have to have this conversation, but I, and those who also care, are not afraid to snitch until you get the point. Sorry, not sorry.
Madeline Murphy is an Online Writer at Rowdy Magazine. She’s currently studying Journalism with a minor in Women’s Studies. Madeline can be found making Apple Music playlists, trying Nigella Lawson recipes and binging SATC. She’s fiercely passionate about social justice and the power of words.