Airing of Grievances: Back from abroad

Burke Joslin, Staff Reporter

Dear Tulane Community,

You’re in danger. I don’t have much time to explain, but please, for your own safety, heed what I’m about to tell you. Lock your doors, hide your booze, make your Instagram private and, for the love of Mike Fitts and all else that is unholy, get out while you can. The worst epidemic since the inception of wholesale Juul pods is upon us. If you know what I’m about to say, it’s not too late for you. If not, it was … alright knowing you.

Who’s worse than killer clowns, country music stars and B-school kids combined? You guessed it – students back from, like, a totally life-changing experience abroad. Prepare yourself for a living hell of pretentious, self-important and holier-than-thou intellectuals with opinions and viewpoints more enlightened than a middle schooler on Pornhub for the first time.

But let’s be real, is going abroad all that it’s cracked up to be? Does studying in another country for a few months really make you that sophisticated? According to returning abroad student Jacob “The Tank” Edwards-Smith III, yes, yes it does.

Edwards-Smith (whose request to remain anonymous I denied) elaborated in a recent conversation on his newfound sophistication and general lack of homesickness. “See, it’s not that I think I’m better than everyone else. It’s just that, you know, I am,” he stated with self-assured conviction. Later, he stated, “I mean, my mother’s love is great and all, but it really doesn’t measure up to my host mother’s love.”

We must, however, take Edwards-Smith’s current worldliness with a grain of salt. Scratch that – with an entire Costco-sized salt shaker. Upon returning home from Spain, Jacob had a rather unique process of acclimation.

“When I finally got home from Barca, I had become so entrenched in Spanish culture and so fluent in the language that I couldn’t even remember my own name. Mentally, spiritually and metaphysically, I had become Spanish. All I could say when I finally returned home was ‘Donde está la biblioteca?’ It was only after weeks of bingeing Reading Rainbow that I was finally able to speak English again.”

Okay, let’s pause. Record scratch. Take a deep breath. Think about it – a miniature Jacob “The Tank” Edwards-Smith III lives inside nearly every Tulane junior. Scared for your life yet? Yeah, me too.

Here’s the kicker. Abroad students think they’re the coolest thing since Shrek 2, but they couldn’t be more wrong. I recently overheard some frat kid brag about the multitude of international trips he took while abroad. Chill, dude. If you went to Ibiza and Avicii doesn’t even think you’re cool, don’t talk to me or my host son ever again.

(RIP Avicii)

Similarly, an acquaintance of mine bragged about how much better her education abroad was. Girl please, if you can’t identify which of the four ninja turtles are Donatello and Raphael, then your art study in Florence wasn’t worth shit.

And to make matters worse, Tulane abroad siphons more money from your parent’s bank account than Bruff 2.0, the potentially mandatory 4-year meal plan, and Fitts’ plan for world domination combined. Now that’s audacious.

Y’all gotta chill,

An Aggressively Disgruntled Upperclassman

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