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Student Life: Fraternity and Sorority Bullshit, Or Duct Tape Dresses

by Sanne van Lochem in Columns & Opinions , 16 November 2017

Dit artikel is ook in het Nederlands beschikbaar

I was twenty-years-old, new in Amsterdam and looking for some nice people to hang out with. A student association sounded like a great plan. But an initiation where I would be yelled at about my incapable self and where I would have to stay standing for twelve long hours and then get applesauce in my hair? Nah...

And where I would get a beer down my shirt just for standing with my back to the bar? Or where I would always have to get two beer because otherwise I would be seen as antisocial. Nope, that was not something I was looking for.

Fortunately, then there was A.S.V.Gay. With no bullshit, I could just enjoy having a beer, wine or soda with some GLBTQ people. There I would not be “that lesbian,” but I would be “one of many.” No mandatory drinks, activities and no weird rules.

Altogether, I think that these “mores,” as they call those rules, don’t fit well with the GLBTQ community. We already don’t conform to the general norm, why bother to follow rules that have been set by “gentlemen” with a self-proclaimed status who speak way to pompously. Why would we let ourselves be voluntarily humiliated at an initiation when we already have enough to deal with just being ourselves?

Thankfully, the A.S.V.Gay introduction is quite different. In the meanwhile, the new association year had a great start and the new members are slowly starting to find their place within the association. During the introduction week (the “kweekweek”) and the introduction weekend (the “ontrozing”) they got to know the association and the members. The overall theme of the introduction was “gay-tv.” With “Help my gay is a handyman” the “kweekweek” paid a visit to Ikea and the handiest themed drink ever was organized. If you ever want to make a duct tape dress, I know someone who can help you. The pub-crawl was also very popular. This introduces the new members to the versatility of the Amsterdam gay bars. A visit to the Church could not miss.

The “ontrozing” weekend with the theme “temptation weiland” (temptation meadow) was also a big success. This parody on the Dutch intitiation, “ontgroening,” brought the new members to farmer Jan in a far corner of the Netherlands. In this secluded area the members were submerged in A.S.V.Gay spheres by the creative “ontrozing” committee. Let’s just say that the members can never eat yoghurt or cucumbers the same way without having this infamous weekend in mind. Even the piercing cold could not lessen the fun. Fortunately, the unlimited drinks helped.

This time the introduction period was extra fun for me. I was allowed to participate as upcoming board member. On September 25 board eight, including me, was officially put in charge. With a lot of enthusiasm we are looking forward to a new year.

And the beers? Those I will sometimes consume with my back to the bar.

 Sanne van Lochem is chair of the student body A.S.V. Gay,
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