Is BlogHer like a sorority?

Even though I'm not going to the BlogHer conference in New York City, I still like to read posts about pre-conference anxiety, what to wear, what to bring, who to hang out with. Then the posts AT the conference, and especially, the posts AFTER the conference. I wonder if going to BlogHer is like sorority rush. . .

It is the end of September, but the first day of sorority rush is hot and humid. I join hundreds of girls who are talking loudly to each other in a ball room in the student union. It is chaotic. The clamour of their voices makes my head ache.

I don't know if I want to join a sorority, but it seems like it might be a good way to meet people. I look at the computer printout of the rush schedule. It lists all of the sororities that we are going to visit. I have never heard of some of them.

My rho chi (rush counselor) leads our group of 30 girls out of the union and across the street. We won't find out to which sorority our rho chi belongs until rush ends.

As we walk up Greek Row, our rho chi points to some steps that lead to a gate in front of a brown two-storey building. We will meet by these steps before and after the next rounds of rush parties. We will go to the student union to get our bids.

For the first round of rush, we go to all the sorority houses as a group with our rho chi. The first house is across the street. We wait on the path in front of the house, and at the scheduled time, all of the girls in the sorority come running out of their house, singing and clapping like cheerleaders. They are wearing tee shirts and sweatshirts with Greek letters. Our group forms a line. As we walk up the path, we each pair off with one of the sorority girls and go inside the house.

My sorority girl leads me to a corner in a sitting room. She talks to me for a few minutes. Then she introduces me to another girl and another. We are all wearing name tags. I can’t hear what anyone is saying. After 15 minutes, the sorority girls form a line again in the foyer, and they sing another song as we leave their house.

Every sorority house that we visit is the same. In some houses, we stay downstairs in the living rooms and parlours. In other houses, they give us a tour of the entire house while they talk to us. Girls that I knew in high school belong to a few sororities. Two of the "best" sororities have houses that are tiny and cramped. In other houses, all of the girls who live there sleep in big dormers. I don’t want to live in those houses. I think one grey house that is made of slate or stone bricks and shaded by a big old birch tree is beautiful.

The sororities are not allowed to give us anything. Even a plastic cup could be a bribe. I tell two of the sororities that I am a legacy. The girls at those sororities introduce me to lots of girls. I talk a lot about myself. I tell another sorority full of mean girls that I am a legacy, but I can tell I should not have said this. I don't like them, but I'm disappointed when they don't ask me back for the next round.


lisahgolden said...

I love this. I eschewed the whole Greek thing when I attended college. I was the first of my family to attend school and the whole thing seemed rather elitist and silly.

My daughter, on the other hand, has found her people among her sorority sisters. Like a duck to water.

Your short story is very much in keeping with her description of this unknown thing for me.

As for blogher - I'm trying not to die a little of envy each time I see it mentioned. Suddenly, I want to belong?

CiCi said...

Good writing. It helped me see some of the excitement that my daughter felt during sorority rush.

Sheila Siler said...

Wish I knew more about BlogHer - perhaps it would be my chance to belong to a "sorority". Love your story.

drlori71 said...

I've never been to BlogHer and I'm not there right now. But after reading everyone's tweets I've come to conclusion that, yes, BlogHer is like a sorority. Why? Two words - parties & alcohol ;-)

Ann said...

Lovely picture you've painted - I think it may have confirmed my suspicion that schooling in Australia is a lot easier than the college/high school thing Americans deal with...I formed that considered opinion watching Beverley Hills 910210 and lots of trashy movies.