A Tale of Two DBAs

By PJ Bigley | 2/29/16 7:36am

It is the best of times worst of times. As week nine rolls around, I think we can all agree that things are grim at best. As I write this post in the periodicals on a Saturday night, I’m realizing that there are way too many people in here with me, which is indicative of a few things: 1) Finals are coming, 2) I’m not the only one who hasn’t started that huge final paper due next week and 3) We are all screwed. Misery likes company, right?

Few things suck worse than pulling all-nighters (and subsequently sleeping through a final exam), but breaking even on DBA takes the cake. There are two kinds of people at Dartmouth — the people who end the term with negative DBA, and the people who leave with hundreds of dollars still left over. Come week ten, it’s nearly impossible to have hit that DBA sweet spot.

As a student whose DBA is hovering dangerously close to zero dollars, I have serious trouble understanding people with too much leftover DBA (Don’t you people eat?) On my quest to understand how the other half lives, I’ve mapped out how I think both groups spend money over the course of the ten-week term.

If your DBA is negative:

You probably go to KAF too much, or you buy Kombucha. Come on, people, that stuff is like six bucks a bottle! Also, you’re drinking bacteria and fungus.

As the term comes to an end, campus starts to feel a little like the Hunger Games (mostly just the hunger part).

And you freak out a little when you see the words “free food” in a blitz. A lecture about dung beetles? Sign me up!

Having dinner with that weirdo you met on Tinder starts looking like a really good idea.

On second thought, probably not.

But still, to those of you with DBA left during week nine, I have only one question: How? Seriously. I really don’t understand you, but I imagine your term went something like this:

You buy a lot of takeout at the beginning of the term…

Then realize you should probably start using the meal plan you paid for. When people learn you can’t possibly spend all that DBA on your own, suddenly everyone on campus wants to be your best friend.

Even with the help of your “friends,” you can’t spend all that extra money. With so much DBA to blow, you start buying out Collis lemonades, Hop candy bags and Late Night tenders like it’s nobody’s business. Food options on campus seem endless. I imagine it feels quite magical.

There’s probably even a KAF cake with your name on it ready for pickup.

I really wish I could be you. So if you catch me staring at your account balance while you’re buying food at Collis, just know that I am staring mostly out of admiration (and also judging you).

But whether you end the term negative or rolling in dough, there is one thing we should all strive to understand: We, as a community, need to work together to collectively spend every dollar of DBA on this campus so that DDS doesn’t win. Eat up, my friends!

PJ Bigley