With our finals over in May, and a year of college under our belts, we were all ready for summer. With visions of laying by the pool, going on vacation, and hanging out with our family and hometown friends, not all of us realized the reality of going home to curfews, work, and even the horrible invention of summer classes. Some of us stayed in Oklahoma, while others like myself went back to our hometowns, mine being in Southern California. And as July is coming to an end, I'm more anxious than ever to get back to Norman.
It’s always interesting going back to your hometown friends and hearing what their experiences are like at school. Especially when you can compare their in-state experiences, while you were away. Many people, including myself, leave the state to experience something new. So hearing what it was like to go to school in California made me realize how similar yet different our experiences were.
Going back to Orange County in my big t-shirt and Nike shorts made me realize how accustomed I became to the OU lifestyle. I found by talking to my friends that they dressed up for class over 90 percent of the time. WHAT?! While home, it was no longer acceptable to wear this comfortable clothing unless you were actually working out.
Location is key. While in Norman we are lucky to have everything we need around us (thanks to it being a college town). The easy-to-get-to bars on Campus Corner, the Greek houses basically on campus. There’s always something going on and you can easily walk everywhere. I’ve found that my friends who go to school in-state have to deal with LA traffic. Most sociable outings are off campus due to there being no Greek houses. They either go to schools that have those houses, or hit up LA clubs on the weekend. And I am not talking about two-stepping clubs.
The traffic would make it difficult to go to more than one place in a night, and having to drive everywhere does not seem like a fun or even safe option. Although, instead of going to empty fields for concerts or parties, they do have the advantage of going on a friend’s house boat for a weekend. The beach is always available to them and it’s nice to have such a popular city around them. They can get tickets to so many concerts and go to different parts of LA. It’s just too bad it takes hours to get to all these locations.
In sunny Southern California, they don’t have snow days. Is that good or bad? I have yet to decide. Also, no one in California has ever heard of mudding and boys do not walk to your side of the car to open the door for you. Southern hospitality makes the boys in Oklahoma much more attractive.
Football is nowhere near as big a deal as it is in Oklahoma. We have a huge stadium at the center of the campus, we have intense tailgates that last all day, we all look forward to putting on our cute game-day attire, and there’s no better feeling than yelling “BOOMER SOONER” back and forth in the stadium during the game. If I were to say that to someone while home, they wouldn’t understand. We are die-hard fans willing to travel with the team to the games, and always have faith in our team. We love our PRIDE band and it’s a big deal to us if even the uniforms attempted to be different. It’s all about tradition. We look forward to the video before each game, and will stand in the blazing sun or pouring rain to watch the game live. Getting season tickets is a battle of waking up extremely early and claiming them on time. It’s a loving tradition and the only way to truly be a Sooner is to experience the feeling of loving your football team so much. This school spirit and tradition doesn’t exist as much in California schools. In fact, no one in California would know what game-day attire is. Horns down!
Although the schools are very different, both states offer great education and good experiences. It just depends on the type of experience you would find fitting for yourself. California has the sun, the beach, LA and a different lifestyle than the simpler, traditional Oklahoma experience. But from what I have learned, OU has given me more of a traditional, fun experience, where I get to live in a town full of college students that love and attend the same university as myself. I am lucky to have found a school that fits me so well and am proud to be a Sooner. Although I will miss the beach and sunshine in California while I am away, I am so excited to be back in the football stadium yelling for my team, I am excited to live in my sorority house, to wear my Nikes while walking to class, and to be able to say “Boomer Sooner” to everyone that walks by, and to have them say it back to me with a smile.