There is no better way to kick off your Saturday than walking through a crowd of middle-aged men while clad in only a towel. Or at least that seems to be what the University thought when it scheduled part of the campus tours for prospective students the dorms.

Everyone has seen the tours on campus — a bunch of high school students and their parents clutching pamphlets about our great establishment and scuttling around like ducklings while following a student in a yellow coat. They stop in the middle of the hallway in Angell Hall to point out the Fishbowl and block the sidewalk in front of the Union to point out the building’s historic appeal. Many University students even went on tours themselves when they were in high school. I went on two.

Having tours block the hallways and sidewalks can be irritating when you are late to class and it’s 27 degrees below zero yet again and you can feel your blood slowly freezing in your veins. But five minutes later, warm and inside a building, you forget about strangling all of them and move on. This is a luxury you don’t have when they follow you home to South Quad.

The tourists block the front doors to hear about safety, sneak a peak in the dining room, take up the entire lobby to talk about residence halls and then march upstairs to a vacant third floor room directly across from the girls’ bathroom. A collective groan rises from the inhabitants of the third floor when a tour arrives.

Not only do the tours block the hallway, making it impossible to get to your room, they don’t move when you politely request to get by. The tour guide announces at the top of his lungs that this floor is currently under “quiet hours” due to exams (completely disregarding said quiet hours), comments on the messy state of the other rooms and then blatantly lies to the tour group, asserting that all rooms have wood floors and this is the average size of a room at the University (have you seen Markley?).

All this is after you’ve been woken up at 9 a.m. on a Saturday morning by a someone singing the praises of University housing. You stumble — bleary eyed, with messy hair and make-up from the night before — out of your room and right into a group of high school boys who are trying to look like they aren’t trying to be cool. You don’t even want to imagine what a walk of shame would feel like if you ran into a tour.

Dashing to the shower between tours is ultimately thwarted when another tour arrives as you are stepping out of the shower. And, somehow, it’s always the dads in the hallway that you have to awkwardly weave through toward the safety of your room while clutching your towel. Don’t forget to multiply this tragic situation — there are always several tours going through the building at the same time. You have the joy of running into a group in front of the building, in the lobby and outside your room. The sad thing is that these descriptions aren’t worst-case scenarios — they’re reality.

When Campus Days started after winter break, the number of tours increased. Tours now run on Mondays and Tuesdays in addition to Fridays and Saturdays. Campus Day tours have added lunch in the dining hall to their rounds, just in case you happened to miss them. If you wanted to be dragged out of bed and thrown into a group of giddy high schoolers who think they’re the next big thing, this is your dream situation. For the rest of us, it’s another reason to sleep until the afternoon (for those not being rudely awakened at 9 a.m.). But, no matter what you do, it’s impossible to escape them.

Of course, touring the University is a great way to get a feel for the campus. We should be excited that so many people want to tour our school. And it isn’t really reasonable to end tours just because the third floor of South Quad is miserable. Maybe it’s our punishment for living in a great dorm with an awesome location. Or maybe we are just such wonderful people that they want to show us off. Either way, tours will continue. And I will continue to despise them.

Erika Mayer is an LSA freshman

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