Dartbeat Debates: Sophomore Summer’s Over- and Underrated Parts

By Stacy Livingston, The Dartmouth Staff, and Will Peisch | 6/2/15 10:55am

Last Thursday, the few, the proud, the (only) ’16 Dartbeat writers had a conversation about whether certain sophomore summer experiences were over- or underrated. For your sake, we’ve edited the conversation to give you our decisions — overrated, underrated or appropriately rated based on student perceptions — on quintessential sophomore summer activities. Get ready, 15X!

Late Night FoCo
Stacy Livingston: I definitely sacrificed my dignity to the altar of Late Night FoCo wings on several occasions.
Will Peisch: Oh my gosh yes, it’s the cat’s pajamas.

Stacy says: Super underrated and almost worth sacrificing the Hop for
Will says: Underrated

Copper Mines
WP: There are a bunch of studies that say being in the copper mines is just not good for you or your health.
SL: This is true. Though I do feel that I succeeded as a human by conquering my fears of heights… and infertility… you know, the usual. (Sidenote: According to Stacy, it’s also technically trespassing.)

Stacy says: Appropriately rated
Will says: Overrated

Ledyard Challenge
WP: I’ve done this!
SL: I have not. I feel like if I’m gonna die, I’d prefer not to be naked, and I’m a terrible swimmer so it’s just too risky.

Stacy says: Overrated
Will says: Memorable but overrated

Short lines at KAF
WP: I don’t drink coffee ‘cause I’m just so kewl.
SL: I actually started drinking coffee over the summer because my friend Kate showed me how to order without being asked 60 questions. Now she’s turned me into a monster, and I have $31 in DBA left. Thanks, Kate.

Stacy says: Underrated, if you’re awake during the shortened hours — which she was not.
Will says: Overrated

4th of July
WP: There were fireworks on the bridge. Make sure that makes it in! Great date spot! I wasn’t actually there with a date, kinda just stumbled upon it, but plenty of other people were.
SL: I was asleep from dinner until 11 p.m. on 4th of July, so I definitely missed those, but if it has the Will Peisch date-spot seal of approval, I’ll go with underrated. I had a pretty boss 4th of July, the highlight of which was probably playing “True American,” a game that combines American history with “the floor is lava,” which are probably the two greatest things to be combined since chocolate and peanut butter.

Stacy says: Underrated
Will says: Underrated (and a good date spot!)

Ice Cream Fore-U
SL: So this is Gifford’s Ice Cream, which is the same thing you can get in FoCo or Collis. It is also a huge portion, and not very good. DBA is not real money. Love yourself.
WP: It’s a great time with friends, but the ice cream is ice cream. I would never go out of my way for Ice Cream Fore-U if I were by myself and wanted ice cream. I’m told it’s a good date spot though!

Stacy says: Massively overrated
Will says: Overrated, but friendship in general is always underrated


WP: I did not do those.
SL: Ugh, I did...Someone grievously injured themselves, but was too far down the river to be transported out by the medics and [they] had to be winched up a tree from a cliff...The ambulances blocked the rest of our cars in, so there we stayed for several hours.

Stacy says: Overrated
Will says: Overrated

WP: What happens at Fieldstock?
SL: I was not actually here for Fieldstock...

Notes: No one within immediate earshot knows what happens during Fieldstock.

Stacy Says: ???
Will Says: ???

Joint Formals
WP: My date did not make all the way through our formal so I ended up third-wheeling everyone else’s dates at the roller skating rink. Other than that it was fun!
SL: Wow, roller formal. Everyone else was wheeling… you were third-wheeling.
WP: Were you just possessed by the ghost of Jerry Seinfeld just now?
SL: Joint formal really limits your date choices, though. There were six houses having formal on the same day, so that was rough. I’m thinking overrated.

Stacy Says: Overrated
Will Says: Underrated

WP: So, I don’t know how to grill, but some people don’t know that they don’t know how to grill, so sometimes you really get really disgusting pinkish raw meat. It’s not awesome.
SL: You always arrive and the food isn’t ready, so you just mill mill mill mill for an hour then leave.

Stacy Says: Overrated
Will Says: Overrated

Friday @ the Farm (known by the inside crowd as “Free Pizza Friday”)
WP: I have no idea what that is.
SL: This one is so underrated that I didn’t even know about it over sophomore summer. But man, do I wish I had. Anything with free pizza has my heart. Is it a Will Peisch quality date spot?
WP: Yes! Because it’s so unknown and has delicious pizza you’ll probably come across as a mysterious pizza hipster on your first date.

Stacy says: Anything with free pizza is underrated.
Will says: Underrated


SL: I actually signed up for a Strip and decided I didn’t want to go. Oops.
WP: I personally had more fun than my freshman trip, cause everyone sort of knew each other so we could all get a little more goofy. Plus I made some really good friends.

Stacy says: Overrated
Will says: Way underrated


Rope Swing at Gilman Island
SL: I sadly could not do this because I broke my arm… mysteriously...
WP: I did do this, and it’s the perfect example of the law of diminishing marginal returns.

Stacy says: It was not actually mysterious at all and may possibly have been during a game of harbor…
Will says: Overrated

WP: My partner and I did not even qualify for this, but lobbied hard as a joke to be the house Masters representatives on account of us being so horrible. I’m not incredibly competitive about pong, but it’s fun as a social thing.
SL: Wow, that’s like saying you’re fiscally conservative and socially liberal. Everyone likes to pretend that they value pong as a social construct yada yada… no. Friendships will be destroyed, hearts broken, tears shed over masters. It’s the truth.

Sidenote: Even if you miss it, people will be snapchatting it like crazy.

Stacy says: Overrated, but live it to the max anyway. Friends come and go. Save-sinks are forever.
Will Says: Overrated, but that’s just to help me sleep at night.

WP: It’s awesome because it opens up a whole new world of activities for you to do outdoors.
SL: The whole air-conditioner business is a pain with getting a doctor’s note and everything, though. I just set up a system of three fans that Rube Goldberg-ed air onto my face. Not great.
WP: Would you say you were not...a fan? (Will then slaps his own knee and says gotcha, marveling at his off-the-cuff pun genius.)
SL: People wear less clothes, though, so I guess that’s nice. If you can sleep without being swaddled in blankets like a small rabbit at Barn Babies, it’s underrated. I, unfortunately, cannot.

Will says: Underrated
Stacy says: Underrated if you plan not to sleep

Sophomore summer in general
WP: At first I thought that I wasn’t qualified to rate normal sophomore summer experiences, considering I did about half of these. But then I realized there’s no such thing as a normal sophomore summer experience, and that’s what makes it so awesome.
SL: I tried not to hype it, I did. But it was the best term ever. I legitimately almost cried on 3FB the other day when I came across the “essential 14X playlist” article and realized that it’s been almost a year and that I’m old and washed up. There’s no time like soph sum, ’17s. Live it up.

Will says: there’s no wrong way to do sophomore summer, other than not doing it
Stacy says: 14X no regrets

Stacy Livingston, The Dartmouth Staff, and Will Peisch