The Dating Games: Freshers’ Night

Read Previous Posts here:
Barsaat Ki Ek Raat: The Committee Conundrum
Once Upon A Time, There Was A Pre-read
The First MICAn Night-out

At the end of the first month, the seniors throw the Freshers’ party for the new batch. For every freshman this is a special night to look forward to during his/her college life. Every college has some special rituals, traditions and plans to mark this landmark event. But by far in my experience, MICA exceeds all expectations hands down. On Freshers’ night, MICA is the place to be at. In simple terms, it absolutely rocks. And no, I’m not exaggerating.

As I mentioned in my previous articles about the Culnite (The Poetic Encounter and Music at MICA: Part -1), that junior batch has to pull off in honor of the senior batch. The juniors’ Culnite is what seals their transformation into the “cultured civilization” of MICA. If juniors’ pull off the mammoth task of pleasing their seniors with their performances (spoiler alert: which every batch always does by the way, no matter how much seniors pretend otherwise and yes, seniors do give a tough time to the performing juniors), then the juniors get treated to an awesome Freshers’ Night. The days, leading to this coveted night in the unpredictable life of a MICAn junior, are marked with interesting activities, surprises and huge anticipation. I do not intend to kill the fun of this anticipation for the coming batches and hence will be careful into how much I share here 🙂

As it’s no longer a well-guarded secret anymore, one of the most different aspects of MICA’s Freshers’ Night is “The Dating Game”. Every senior gets to take a junior (sometimes even 2 dates, oh yes!) as their date to the party. There is a well-structured process (I’m not too sure about that though, as there is not much transparency in it) that is followed to allocate the dates. There are formal and serious committee meetings & even batch-meets that take place to discuss upon this “very important” matter at hand. There are interviews and questionnaires, ratings and rankings, votes and discussions, brain-storming sessions and what not. No matter how trivial the whole process seems later, it was actually quite a lot of fun attending those batch-meets. One shouldn’t miss this amazing experience while at MICA.

There is very well guarded “The Date List”. There is a lot of secrecy surrounding the whole process and the results. There is politics and favoritism and cheating. There are controversies and heart burns. There are rude shocks and back-stabbing. There are rumors, speculations and intense bitching. You name it and it has all the elements of a high-octane drama. The final list gets revealed on a sleepy night when utmost care is taken so that no one sees when and who pasted that list. And fellas, there is a student committee to execute all this. Well, yes, we are still talking about “The Dating Games”. No matter how well I try to describe it, you’ve got to experience it to know it.

After the list is revealed, the whole campus is abuzz with lot of activities. Some people are aghast with their date allocations and some are extremely delighted. Some allocations surprise us and some were too predictable. The whole process reminds me of “The Hunger Games” and hence (you must have guessed it) the name “The Dating Games”.

People want to know their dates in person. Some of us want to impress them. Some guys even pull off stunts to formally invite their dates. Some people start meeting or investigating secretly about their dates. We go shopping for the right gifts for them. We dress up (or dress down for that matter) for our dates. On the night of party, we get seats assigned to us where we sit with our dates during performances. We wait for our dates in the Audi while holding our breaths. We pose for pictures; scream with joy upon seeing our unique gifts. We enjoy our night with our dates. All-in-all, some of us find a very good friend, a great companion, a great senior/junior and loads of fun memories to cherish, at the end of this extremely enjoyable “Dating Game”. Some of us even find their partners (no kidding!) and this fun dating becomes serious dating too. Some of us get to experience our first-ever date and have time of our lives while being made to feel special and all.

I’ll talk about my personal experiences for this night later in the blog. But the Freshers’ Night was one of the most memorable and fun experience for me at MICA, for more than just one reason. This is also one of the MICAn traditions that I absolutely adore and trust me, there are not many.

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