The heavy stigma placed on partiers of Gen-Y has become a frustrating internal battle for many of us. I might be the first one to stand up and admit that we do dig our own graves by publicly affiliating ourselves with bongs and half gallons in our Instagram photos. That being said, those of us that pride ourselves on balancing a healthy social life with a fully booked class schedule are often amalgamated with those who have similar weekend habits but lack the discipline to make it acceptable.
Is this fair? Not really. Is it understandable? Sort of. Gen-X doesn't see partying the way we do. Logically, waking up with a nebulous, amusing idea of what went on the night before doesn't exactly seem conducive to raising our overall qualities of life.
Thus, we don't take our antics on such a literal level. The weekend warrior craves the danger, the excitement, and the stories that come along with a Friday chalk full of idiotic mistakes. Think of all the great minds (Hemingway, Hendrix, etc.) that have used some trippy hallucinogen to gain perspective and open new horizons of their existence. They sought something new, something they'd never experienced before.
Sure, a night at the frat house won't exactly give you the material to write the next Jimi Hendrix Experience, but it does have a certain stereotypical poetic-ness that will always resonate when you think of your wild, confusing years of college. Being able to take such activities at more than face value is a skill on its own.
Being a true weekend warrior is a fine, cultured art attributed to the few of us that actually give a damn about our level of intellectualism. It isn't easy to foster a brimming social life when you've got four hours of linear algebra due on Monday, but we do it regardless. We sit here and roll our eyes at someone who goes out six nights a week, complains about how difficult college is, and writes essays lacking the most basic of grammar skills. Like, seriously, we learned this shit in third grade, people.
One of my personal favorite weekend warriors is my roommate and best friend, who comes home plastered at 3AM and immediately starts on her advertising homework assiduously, until her morning classes start. This is the stuff that makes life – to say that you plowed through college half-drunk, yet incredibly hardworking, and still managed to come out more academically successful than most of your peers.
It's a lifestyle that simply isn't appreciated or even accepted in the eyes of most of our older contemporaries. They don't understand our breed; yet, we don't understand why we aren't allowed to blow off a little steam once we've put in our time doing undergrad slave work.
The Gen-X syndrome even resonates with some of our own. That's one of the biggest issues I had with a lot of people at my old high school. Some of the snobbiest gals had no issue immediately writing off anyone who associated themselves with underage drinking/drinkers. But how far has this attitude gotten them, thus far, in the grand scheme of life? Trust me, not far at all.
A solution to this puzzle is not a clearly cut path. Should we sacrifice the few years when it's actually acceptable to behave in this manner? If the weekend warrior manages his online, public image as to not portray him in a complete party-boy light, what exactly does he have to lose? Such questions are personal ones, but ones that really do shed light on that fact that the issue isn't so black and white. Things really aren't as serious as they seem.
In the words of a great mathlete, “Don't let the haters keep you from doing your thang.” (But, obviously, do it wisely and with good intention.)
Rage on, weekend warriors.
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