Tuesday, February 22, 2005

Passion and Shopping Carts

I went to Dorm Wars 2005 last night, despite being an off campus student now. My roommate and I decided to go support our ex-dorm, Cross Hall, in the competitions between dorms in eating, shopping cart races, and obstacle courses. The basket ball court was packed with students in all sorts of costumes, from StarWars to Ghetto Chicks to quasi-River Dancers. As the night started, I commented to the person sitting next to me that events like this always bring out the uncivilized/caveman nature in everyone, guys and girls alike. Somehow the sheer competitiveness of eating cherry pie filling, running madly across the court pushing someone in a shopping cart, and vaulting over a 3-1/2 foot wall shows the raw primitive passion even in the most reserved. Normally prissy girls shoved their faces into pie filling, studious guys flew over walls, and students that sit in class and never say a word screamed wild encouragements.

The victors of the night were Bowdle Hall (guys) and Atkins-Ellis (girls). Congrats to you all! When the names were announced, the winning dorms came streaming from the bleachers, yelling, cheering, hugging, and pounding each other on the back. The golden trophies were lifted high, and medals were proudly placed around the victor's necks. You would have thought that the Olympics had visited Walker Arena.

After I left the craziness of the arena, smiling to myself and cheering for the truckload of Bowdle guys that were yelling and careening down the street, I couldn't help but think about the passion that I had just seen. It was passion brought about simply because of the competition, the physical challenge, and the camaraderie of the participants, despite the absurdity of the activities.

I think that it is these moments that we are most alive, when desire, loyalty, physical exertion, and community come together in some form, even if it is pushing someone down the court in a shopping cart.

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