Spooky Rich

It has often been said of the Freshman dorms, “Belk is always the party dorm” or “Little? They’re always just a little bit crazy” or even “Oh yeah, Watts doesn’t actually exist.” But the statements on Belk, Little, and Watts—with the exception of the last, Watts truly is not a place rooted in this reality—are fluid and highly generalized; it is not so in Richardson. 

“Every year, Rich is the ‘cult’ dorm.” Yes, no further investigation required to validate Rich’s ‘cult’ status, but I wanted to dive deeper into this obvious plot by RLO to fill Rich with rarae aves every year. What makes Rich tic? Is this cult one of a consistent belief system, which upon its leader’s death will become an official tax-exempt religion in the eyes of the United States Federal Government? Or might Rich be more than the monolithic cult that many Davidson students describe?

To complete my research, I compelled my contact inside RLO—meaning I took him up to the dome of Chambers and dangled him over its edge by his shirt collar (A surefire way to persuade anyone to your own thinking: he complied in seconds)—to place me inside this community for a single academic year. If anyone doesn’t believe that I actually am an undercover agent and have no idea what I am talking about, just come knock on my door in May. I currently live on the second floor in room 213 just across from the water fountain and water-bottle filler. (These words have been redacted as they would reveal incriminating information about the author. All Yowl writers are protected by their 1st and 5th Amendment rights.)

So here are my findings: Richardson Hall seems to have been divided into three spheres of influence; certain unpredictable actors cross the boundaries of these spheres quite often, but overall, I have found the resistive force of these boundaries to be quite powerful. 

The first sphere is marked out by the first floor alone. This community’s residents lack any definition or understanding of sleep. At any given hour of the night, at least one poor soul will be in 1st Rich lounge, grinding out homework or watching early-2000’s era Disney movies or furiously crafting the next day’s floor-wide poll on the whiteboard. Moreover, because of RLO’s unjust conversion of every floor’s lounge (except 1st’s) into a triple dorm room, this sphere’s residents originally held a superiority complex over every other floor because they controlled the only lounge left in Rich. However, soon enough that superiority was wounded first by the discovery of a hidden treasure: the forgotten lounge in Base Rich and second by the ruthless invasion of their space by other Rich floors’ residents. 

The second sphere is quite odd. These residents live on both 2nd Rich and Base Rich; however, I have yet to understand how these physically-disconnected communities have forged such an intense bond. I suspect romantic interests abound, providing a convenient excuse not to engage in ‘hallcest,’ which is a much greater sin than ‘buildingcest.’ Anyways, whatever the origin of this bond, these people have some very odd habits. ‘That’s what she said’ jokes are a forced staple; their Flickerball team was named with an indecipherable acronym (Richardson PFDRP? What in Will E. Wildcat’s good name does that stand for?!); and strangely these floors are nearly devoid of Humsters! There are one or two token Humsters on 2nd and Base Rich, but I was under the impression that they were everywhere, all the time, inescapable, inevitable, Thanos, … I think I lost my train of thought. 

Anyways, I mentioned earlier how the resistive force of these boundaries is extremely powerful in Rich; well, that may be mostly true, but the boundary between the first and second spheres is less restrictive than the boundaries between Rich’s final sphere and the previous two. So much less restrictive that only a brave soul would ever venture up another flight of stairs to reach the 3rd or 4th floors of Richardson. 

Here, you may find a team of savage flickerball players, most of whom do actually live elsewhere, all of whom could have played Division-Two college sports. Perhaps, you see this sphere’s residents on the town for a night down the hill; do not expect to see them return as a group. By the end of the night, they may not be quite sure where they in fact live. I even wonder sometimes if 3rd and 4th Rich happen to be populated by Steve Mirabello, First-Year Class President, and all his many shadow voters. I would never level any such serious accusation of political fraud unless I truly were skeptical that any community could support a campaign so lacking in creativity that it adopted the slogan ‘Believe in Steve.’

Unfortunately, my evidence of this last sphere’s characteristics is purely external in nature, for I too fear what might happen if I were to ascend into the heavens of mystery that are 3rd and 4th Richardson. I rather prefer being the mysterious undercover investigator to some common ghost applicant.