Components required for a successful Screw: a costume (preferably embarrassing), dinner on a paper plate, a sense of humor, and hopefully a reliable roommate.
Screw Your Roommate is one of those Swat marvels that could only happen here, and it remains one of the most popular social occasions of the semester. When asked about how they viewed Swarthmore’s version of blind dating, most students described the event as either “fun” or “awkward”…. usually the second one though. Yet Sharples was buzzing Saturday night, filled with students dressed as suns and moons, lifeguards and swimmers, and Lilos and Stiches. Despite its awkwardness, Swatties were happy to get another opportunity to meet new people.
“Screw gives you the opportunity to meet people you don’t run in the same circle with, someone you wouldn’t run into” says one Junior who goes on to explain how “it’s interesting to see who your friends think you are compatible with.”
Screw is a chance to see how well your roommate (or friend) knows you. Has your roommate picked up on the fact that you’ve been eyeing a certain someone in your stat class or that you’re into fencers/debaters/bio majors. Screw dates often get set up weeks in advance, highlighting not only the popularity of the event but also the importance roommates can place on finding a good match. There is often particular excitement among Freshman who are unsure about how this strange tradition actually goes down.
“People can be pretty hopeful about Screw” says Murphy Austin ‘16. “No matter what though you get a good story from it.”
This seems to be the attitude with which most students go into Screw with. The whole occasion is harmless, with the worst outcome being that you met someone new. And if the conversation lulls with your date, you can easily make fun of everyone’s costumes.
The costumes are as idiosyncratic as the event itself, making it hard to take Screw seriously when you’re dressed up like a cupcake. Some sweet costumes that were featured Saturday included Firefox and Chrome, Obama with two smartly dressed secret service agents and Michelle, NASA and an alien, a carrot and Bugs Bunny, and gender role reversed Pocahontas and John Smith. With Swatties dressed up as dorky as they are, the room was buzzing and was a fun place to be.