Swamp Talk: Things We Should Know by Now

By Meaghan Cloherty

Somewhere along the line, I picked up this dangerous fondness for introducing all of my friends to each other. Afterwards, the “what do you think?” answers start to reveal blunders or habits that make other people unnecessarily uncomfortable. I am so grateful for my brutally honest friends who will let me know when I’ve done something that throws people off, but when you aren’t so close to someone, there are topics that are really hard to bring up.

Here are some things that I wish we could just say to each other, because these small changes can make our likes so much less stressful.


When you’re dropping someone off or walking someone home: Make sure they get inside safely. Some of us feel silly asking, but you know what? Gainesville can be a dangerous place. Please help us feel better by waiting to make sure we walk through the door.

If you live in Florida: Shower regularly. This is one of the most uncomfortable subjects to broach if you like to avoid offending people. You can get used to your own funk and forget that it’s easy for others to notice, especially in close quarters. A good rule of thumb is to soap up at least every other day. In conclusion, showering is good. Take my word for it.

If you’re going to stereotype and insult a wide group of people: Make sure the other person isn’t a part of that group first. I mean, it may be better not to stereotype and complain in general, but baby steps; let’s try not to offend people to their faces. An important part of college is learning to interact with new people without shoving your foot into your mouth every chance you get. Take advantage of this opportunity.

If the conversation gets around to sex: Don’t tell people that their choices are immature. If they have lots of partners, don’t act disgusted. If they choose not to have sex, don’t tell them to grow up; they’re adults who can make their own decisions.

Lastly, if you have any female friends over, at all, ever: Keep a wastebasket in your bathroom. You know why. You just may not have thought it through. Please don’t give your guests anxiety–just give them a trash can next to your toilet.

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