The calendar page has turned over into March and the weather continues tug-of-warring between winter and spring, settling on a happy medium of mud, slush and ever-changing temperatures. What were once shiny-and-brand-new course schedules have lost their original glimmer and appeal, and as the student body settles into its semester, a campus-wide lack of motivation now leaves students avoiding studying for midterms, livin’ on a prayer and counting down the minutes until they will meet the sweet, sweet embrace of Spring Break.
I myself have alternated between either pouring over my studies in the basement of Rolvaag or violently thrashing on the floor of my dorm room, wishing that I had any viable skills that would allow me to get rich and drop out of school. But while I am slowly withering away and drowning in my studies, I cannot help noticing that the gloomy weather and the death within my very soul are juxtaposed by blooming romances across campus. I walk past couples sharing window seats, flirtatiously giggling and sharing pastries from the Cage. Lovers walk hand-in-hand across the snowy quad and snuggle up with each other in Fireside. Ole love has come alive in preparation for the blossoming of spring.
Although I am running my tail off and striving to stay afloat amid an academic hell-storm, I can’t help but feel a little bit jealous that I do not have a special someone to finish out the year with. Another semester is flying by and the St. Olaf dating gods have once again failed to deliver me my St.Ol-mate. I’ll be the first to admit that I’ve been much more committed over the last few (dozen) months to hibernating and scrounging up loose change to fund my frequent voyages to the Pause Kitchen, and I’ve been much less focused on searching for a mate. That said, I have made a couple haphazard attempts at finding that special someone, or just someone, yet all has seemingly been for naught. The college dating scene is a tough nut to crack; it’s no wonder those campus squirrels are so belligerent.
As I was wallowing on the first floor of the library and daydreaming of summer whilst scouring Catalyst for scholarly articles, it hit me: what this campus needs is an online research database for dating. Research librarians, take note because this could be a real game-changer. Here’s how it works: you start out with 3000+ possible matches, and you narrow down your search from there. You would obviously remove already spoken-for members of the community, but everybody else is fair game! Ebsco and JSTOR will never be the same.
With the St. Olaf “Date-a-Base,” balancing work and play has never been so easy! Stick with me, brave reader. Here’s what I’m envisioning: every current Ole gets a database entry (and I suppose we could include Carls too). When a single-and-ready-to-mingle logs on, they can perform an advanced search to aid their selection process. Looking for a specific gender identity or sexual orientation? Check the box! Want someone who is in your graduating class? Fill in the bubble! Searching for a pre-med babe who enjoys playing Frisbee golf in their downtime? Select from the dropdown menu! Click “save” and wait for the love scholars to generate your fate!
Zero results match your search? Beggars can’t be choosers, you picky Mickey. Stay open to the possibilities that lie outside of Great Con or Ole Choir. Still hundreds of viable options? Narrow your results again. Click “Peer Reviewed” if you want a second opinion to vouch that no, this individual is not a serial killer, or yes, this person is a manipulative tool – steer clear! You can keep focusing in on your group of potential mates by using categories including academic and co-curricular interests and whether they prefer pizza from the Caf or the Pause. Submit your parameters, double double toil and trouble, and BOOM! You get a short list of the people on this hill who are most suitable for your romantic yearnings, and the ball is in your court.
Friends with benefits, ride or die, future spouse, snuggle buddy, Caf date or whatever you’re looking for, your match could be just one quick online search away. Can you imagine the possibilities! Research has never been this sexy! After immersing myself in deep thought, I have concluded that an online Date-a-base would have a wonderful impact on this community and would be a worthwhile investment for this institution. Just think of all the future Legacy Oles that it could lead to!
Perhaps one day we will see the materialization of St. Olaf’s scholarly search engine, but until then, I will continue to live in a study carrel with my coffee and Kierkegaard, wishing that there was a hunky distraction to help me procrastinate my studies.