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Fo... The ShortiesGetting Around MIT

By Wang Lei and Chris Cabral

You’re a freshman in college, so the possibilities are literally endless. You can either go on being the nerd that got you here in the first place, or you can totally reinvent yourself into someone remotely interesting. As seniors, we feel like we should help freshmen avoid some potential pitfalls that can stand in the way of the reinvention process.

Don’t take anything that other freshmen aren’t taking. Seriously. No one cares that you got an A++ in multi-variable calculus at your local Rejected From State Schools Community College. What is multi-variable calculus anyway? Around these parts, it’s 18.02. Welcome to MIT, where we don’t play with “names”. Even the students have numbers. Hey, at least they’re not tattooed on you, yet.

How was your senior prom? So you won state in soccer at Montana Mountain High? Where the hell is Montana? No one cares about your high school. Moving on.

No one takes 18.03 their fall term freshman year, except the Course VI smellies; you’ll know what we’re talking about when you walk into an Athena Cluster the night before that first 6.001 project is due. While we’re on classes, take TEAL and rip on it even if you don’t really hate it that much. Why? Because everyone else is doing it. As a wise man once said in John 3:16 (maybe John? Could be Jesus), “It’s not about doing what’s right; it’s about doing what’s cool.” At least, that’s what we got out of John 3:16.

Make friends with smart kids in your class. When you see one checking his email on the TEAL computers using a text-based mail client, ask him if he wants to go get boba tea and play DDR after class. If you feel bad about copying, well, then don’t think of it as copying ’cause everyone does it; refer to John 3:16. Remember: at MIT, you never do the math: that smart, 5’4”, quiet guy with the forgettable name does. In related news, if any of you ladies out there need help with your psets, feel free to email or

End any long distance relationship within the next … well, immediately. Let’s be honest, there’s only one reason to be in a relationship, and that’s spiritual enlightenment. And by spiritual enlightenment, we don’t mean phone sex, we mean sex. If it weren’t for the headache of having to patch things up every month, we’d totally break up with our girlfriends during those special few days. However, don’t be clever and change your voicemail to, “Hey Ann, we’re over, everyone else, leave a message.” And definitely don’t write something in your school newspaper about specifically breaking up with her. Oh, wait …. Anyway, when you go home for Thanksgiving, you’re going to want to be stuffing that turkey, if you know what we’re saying. So just let her down gently, you asshole.

None of what we just said matters if you didn’t manage to do the most important thing you have to do as a college freshman — join a house. Just know this: if you didn’t get a bid anywhere, that means over 50 percent of the male population at MIT thinks you’re lame. Think about it, MIT kids think you’re lame.

Ladies, don’t think we forgot about you. If you’re not affiliated as a “house girl” by now, think of the bright side, no one will expect you to shave your legs for the next four years.

You can figure the rest out on your own.