Column: An encouraging case of Hoya paranoia

At least two students from Georgetown University went around Thurston Hall last weekend with a blue marker and wrote several variations of “GW sucks” inside the building. Let’s clarify that. These kids weren’t doodling on someone’s marker board. This was a systematic defacement of five floors, an elevator and a stairwell that someone must have spent a good hour finishing on a Friday night.

And people say GW students are the ones with an inferiority complex to the school down the street?

If anything, Friday night’s bizarre incident (even by Thurston standards) proves the opposite. Apparently, our friends at Georgetown are so insecure about their so-called superior standing that they feel the need to re-affirm it with a Sharpie.

GW students, on the other hand, don’t really need to affirm anything. We may not have gotten accepted to Georgetown, we may still cheer when the public address guy at our basketball games announces that the Hoyas lost that day, but for the most part, I don’t think GW students have much to envy about Georgetown anymore.

Everyone talks about their superior academics, but how much better are they nowadays? Thanks to U.S. News and World Report restructuring their rankings, Georgetown and GW are now both in the “top tier,” so our precise ranking in relation to theirs isn’t so important anymore. Plus, GW President Stephen Joel Trachtenberg told The Hatchet that there was a mistake and GW was supposed to be ranked No. 1 and not No. 51. That’s enough evidence for me.

And as GW has become more selective, look at the students Georgetown is turning out. Two freshmen in Thurston 907 said one of these Georgetown students, presumably drunk, asked if he could use their bathroom at 11 p.m. Friday night. Any student smart enough to get into GW would know never to break the seal that early in the evening.

And the vandals’ work doesn’t show much creativity, either. I didn’t learn much in my freshman writing class, but I could probably come up with something better than “GW blows” or “GW is gay.” Perhaps there isn’t much more they could have said. After all, they are everything we are, but worse. What are they going to do, call us a bunch of spoiled rich kids who think we’re going to run the country some day? A really good prank would have shown more intellectual sophistication.

Another category in which people mistakenly think Georgetown is better is athletics. Now, I love Patrick Ewing, but the fact of the matter is, and I can’t emphasize this enough, he doesn’t play there anymore. He graduated in 1985. The only place to watch the Hoyas on national television today is ESPN Classic. The plain truth is that in the past year, GW has beaten Georgetown in men’s soccer, women’s soccer, baseball, volleyball, rowing, men’s tennis and women’s tennis. Heck, even our swimming and diving team roughed up the Hoyas. And our women’s basketball team is perpetually superior to theirs. The only bragging rights they have left are in men’s basketball, and that’s only because they refuse to play us.

Finally, not that anyone ever accused Georgetown of being the center of D.C. nightlife, but there is something to be said for the fact that large groups of students from Georgetown, Howard and Maryland – and a reported 20 to 25 male students from the University of Richmond – were all hanging around Thurston Friday night. They weren’t at Georgetown, they weren’t at Maryland, they weren’t at Howard and God knows they weren’t at Richmond. They were all here at GW, looking for a good time and probably finding one with a Thurston girl – except, of course, for the Georgetown kids, who surely saw little action beyond themselves and their Sharpies.

So, in response to a comment by one resident, who called the vandalism “a poor reflection on (GW) student life,” I’d say last Friday night reflects pretty well on GW. If you don’t believe me, just look down the street.

-The writer, a junior majoring in history, is the Hatchet sports editor.

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