As I’ve referred to in profiles of myself on various sites (Facebook, LJ, MySpace, etc.), I’ve never been a huge partier. I’m not a fan of crowded spaces, though I’ll go to them if there’s a need or want. I love visiting Manhattan, for instance, which isn’t exactly a quiet place. My ideal situation is something with 6-12 people that I know well. Call it being shy (which might not be far off the mark), or whatever you want, it’s just my thing. To this extent, I’ve never been to many parties in my college career.

I’m not alone in this. One of my roommates also doesn’t seem to go to many parties. My aunt didn’t go to many in her college years. And I’m sure there’s many others. There are several reasons for this, and “being shy” is only one of them.

I tend to have a great fear of doing the wrong thing. I remember that I was highly angry at myself when I received my first and only detention in seventh grade for not handing in homework at time. And so I began my college career with a rather anti-underage drinking view. I changed my view somewhat after the first year, but continued only going to parties myself only occasionally over the next two years.

Now I’m in my Senior year, and I’ve probably been to more parties, or to the bar, in the last month than I ever did in the previous three years. A lot of people I know have noticed this, and here’s the two reasons why:

1) It’s my last year here, and I know that while I’ll be able to hang out with people whenever the occasion occurs, I’ll never have the chance to do it again during my college years. You can hang out in a lot of places, but parties are one way to do it.

2) I’m 21 now, and thus that “getting caught” fear is now more or less gone. You’ll probably be hard-pressed to get me to a dorm party, but off campus? Fair game.

Still, I prefer the less crowded atmosphere, even though I know many people thrive in it. Even last night, though I enjoyed being where I was, I was more comfortable when most of the people had left, and there was less of a crowd. I don’t know how to explain it. It’s just me.

So, if anyone was wondering why my sudden increase in appearances at parties and at the bar (though I could never go before this year, so it may be a moot point), that’s why.

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