Before I go on to tackle the issue of our dwindling Grove attendance, I need to clear two things up. First and foremost, I am not angry. This post won’t be me retorting behind a computer screen nor will it be a roast session on reasons I don’t like the University of Miami. I love this school and quiet frankly I think it truly is great to be a Miami Hurricane. Secondly, unlike any of my prior posts, I suppose you could say that this one has a more defined audience. While my cult following of readers may only include my parents and my older brother “when he has a minute,”normally I like to write about things that are more or less universally relatable, or at least not segmented to one college in a country of hundreds. Therefore, I know that some of my points here may go over the heads of someone who doesn’t attend UM. So just to bring everyone onto the same page, Miamis bar scene revolves around an area called Coconut Grove. With Miamis 5am closing call, “The Grove” is a 24/7 happening in the South Florida area. The 15 or so bars stay open until about the same time as the 15 or so restaurants start serving breakfast. Located just about 5 minutes from school, its by far the most accessible and available watering hole for the local college kids. For three and a half years now, the Grove has been beckoning me to come grab a drink every Tuesday and Thursday and will continue doing so for others long after I’m gone….maybe. What was once an absolute given has turned into a ghost town, where the once cluttered social hangout has grown stagnant and frankly…erm…blase blase blase. Well I’m here to say its not the Groves fault, it’s ours. I’m looking forward to my finals months down here as a college student and I intend for the Grove to play somewhat of a weekly roll in that. Here’s what I think we need to do and what all of my fellow Hurricanes need to realize.
All About Attitude.
Fun fact about myself…I cried myself out of sleep away camp at the age 0f 12. Plain and simple it wasn’t my cup of tea. After I was able to shake the separation anxiety of being so far removed from Mommy dearest, I signed up for 2 summers at Camp Windells, a snowboarding summer camp that had 8 weekly sessions of snowboard training/coaching on the glacier of Mount Hood, Oregon. Well, as one may imagine about Snowboarding in the dead heat of July, it was anything but a guarantee. If it was 5 degrees to warm, the snow would melt and riding was near impossible. 5 degrees too cold and the T shirt you opted for would leave you cold as titties. All in all, each and everyday was variable…again to say the least. Windells lived by the motto that its All About Attitude. AAA was basically tattooed on all of the counselors necks as the staff was eager to smarten the kids up to the fact that there were to be “no bad days.” I’ve loved that expression ever since I’ve heard it and have applied it to all aspects of life…nightlife and partying included. Life is all about attitude my friends. The energy or the vibe you start with will dictate the ending result and your experience 100000%. Going out to the Grove is no different, its AAA. So next time you hear that the crowd is heading to Fat Tuesdays or Tavern leave your “ew’s” and “yucks” at home with your christian louboutin South Beach heals. Bring a smile. Its contagious.
Check Your Privilege, Bro.
I honestly don’t know how us Miami kids are more spoiled. Is it the fact that we have one of the most happening and chic metropolitan areas in world at our finger tips? Or is the fact that kids who haven’t had their first real job could possibly even afford it? Like I said prior, I’m not here to bash our eclectic student body. I seriously think its great that us private schoolers have the bank roll to drop a tuition worth of money at LIV on Sunday every other weekend. Trust me, I want to be like Lil Wayne too and roll around with that “Fuck You Money.” But take a big step back and check your privilege everyone. Just because we can, doesn’t mean we should. I don’t think everyone really understands what my fellas go through every weekend and the pressure to get yourself a spot on the table at Wall every Friday. My friends up at Bloomington, Indiana would shit their pants if they woke up to the group text asking “so who’s in for $250 tonight.” I think most of them would reply with something along the lines of “Sorry, I can’t. I still need to eat lunch throughout February.” I think collectively we need to realize who we are and where all of this fluff is coming from. Miami’s amazing and we’re spoiled with choice…never a bad thing to be honest. But remember, your friends who are balling out aren’t doing so on their own merit. My dads a hard working Gynecologist, that sick fuck, and my mom sells ad space in a parenting magazine. They work hard for their money just like sometime in the not so distant future, I will do for my own. The Grove gives us a game board where everyones on the same playing field. Lets see how you do when the drinks are $5 instead of $50 and when your ratio is about as important as History of Rock & Roll tomorrow at 8am.
Low Risk High Rewards
This little section just has to do with the logistics of it all. The Grove is safe…and yes I know 5 steps in the wrong direction and you’ll end up at the local trap house where you’ll meet some dude named Jose whos pushing crushed up Baby Powder saying its in fact “fire booger sugar.” By safe I just mean its not a gamble, cause honestly whats the worst that could happen. Again, maybe I’m biased here as I already touched upon my sleepaway camp woes, but I always found comfort in the fact of being close to home. I could throw a football off of my balcony and land that dime on the roof of Mr. Moes (come over I’ll show you). South Beach is a 35$ uber ride away and your piece of shit Nebarska ID chief fake won’t even resell for your ride back home when you get DENIED. The Grove is just a string of college bars…nothing more nothing less. This is the time of our lives where mistakes are not only expected to be made but inevitable and frankly you don’t want to fuck up in Little Havana. Keep it in the Gables when you can guys…you’re a local here. Everywhere else is just such a big roll of the dice. Low risk, high rewards…any finance major will tell you that that’s the stock you are looking for. Example? Big Joe, the bouncer who runs tavern, won’t turn you away if you just slip a fiver under your ID. Heck make in 10 bucks and he’ll give you the shirt off his damn back…god bless him. Try throwing the Wall bouncer a $5. He’ll blow his nose in it and probably tell you he’s allergic to your bullshit. Me and my friends used to call him the Grim Reaper and that instead of holding a VIP guest clipboard he should just hold a scythe cause with one flick of the wrist that man will KILL your night.
This Is College.
Heres my last point that I want to remind my peers, an idea that I think slips the mind of most down here. We are in college right now. For my international friends, UNIVERSIDAD! We are never, ever going to get to experience a time as diverse and experimental as we are now. It’s the time to meet people, try new things, and moreover, figure out the person you are. Now I know few and far people who actually feel comfortable in a night club. It’s load and chaotic and the only place you could probably have an actual conversation would be in the bathroom where the attendant will assume you’re doing blow and will ask you for 10$ for the jolly rancher you just took. Go to the college bars. I know they aren’t the best…tav is too small, Moes tries way too hard, and Tuesdays its outdoors so anything other than white or black shirts and you’ll look like you just took a dip in the ocean. As shitty and uncomfortable as you may feel out there in Coconut Grove, its actually your intended comfort zone at this point in your sophomoric life. Go out and meet someone. Stop worrying about what frat hes in or the fact that the girl in the corner isn’t even in a sorority. Pike’s flag isn’t on the wall anymore, these places don’t discriminate…neither should you.
So listen folks, it doesn’t have to be every Tuesday and Thursday…I think that ship has sailed. But when it comes down to it, Miami is like no other school on this planet…that doesn’t mean that the kids that go here have to live life on Mars. Lets bring this shit back to reality and enjoy ourselves…worry free. This are supposed to be the best 4 years of our lives, stop spending half of that time in ubers and waiting on lines outside. SHEESH.