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Life In The Off Campus Liveout

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The majority of off campus houses rented by fraternity men (or liveouts, as we call them in the PNW) couldn’t pass the most lenient of city inspections. I wouldn’t even be surprised to hear that my fraternity’s liveout was built on some ancient native burial ground. That’s the only feasible explanation for all the strange, dangerous, and downright evil shit that takes place in that overpriced cesspool. Plus it sounds kinda badass to live on top of dead Native Americans, purely out of respect, of course.

There are no cooks, no custodians, no landscapers, and no limits to your fantasies of endless celebration fueled by Old English and sin. For anyone brave enough to take the leap, moving into a fraternity liveout can grant you greater access to character building endeavors, richer life experiences, stronger friendships, and, if you’re like me, clinically diagnosed anxiety.

The worst part about moving into a house with a few of your brothers is the adjustment period. Going from a dorm room, chapter house, or, if you really make ill-informed decisions with your life, your parents’ home, to a rundown shack that hasn’t received a face lift since the early 1900s, can be quite a culture shock. Not to mention the struggle of being in close quarters with several men in their early twenties. With that amount of concentrated filth and testosterone, it’s surprising that salirophilia isn’t more trendy in college towns.

The time it takes for you to get settled can range from one day to your entire college career, but that’s all part of the genius of liveouts. Sometimes you don’t realize how much fun it is to live in a shit hole until you no longer live in said shit hole. Once you get acclimated to sticky floors, an ever-accumulating pile of beer cans, stumbling over empty handles, interacting with drunken strangers who are constantly trespassing on your property, and nose burning stenches that change on a daily basis but never seem to leave, you can really begin reaping the benefits of putting your name on the lease for that neglected, civil war era house, which has been used for nothing but sleeping and partying over the last century.

The sky’s the limit at this point. You wanna hop on the roof at six in the morning to enjoy a couple heaters with your coffee while shamelessly calling out passing by walk-of-shamers? Go right ahead. You wanna throw a rager the night before the beginning of finals week? Be my guest. You wanna smoke weed in the kitchen while you wait for the Jimmy Johns guy? No one’s going to stop you. This is your house, your money, and your imagination. Never stop dreaming. Some of my fondest memories involve doing illegal things at our liveout with my brothers. Criminal activity has a way of bringing people together.

To some, these houses represent all that’s good in life, like Sunday at Augusta, or those man romper things that Dillon was going on about the other day. To others, they symbolize a youth-corrupting evil, which turns otherwise upstanding members of society into monsters, who are fully consumed by their hedonistic pursuits. We all know the latter is false. Probably another defamatory misconception orchestrated by the fake news dominated media.

Doesn’t the idea of renting a house with your boys while treating it with utter disrespect sound like every young man’s dream? This is the house your dad wishes he was still living in, and the decrepit hell pit that your mom actively tries to wipe from the backlog of horrible experiences she had in college. This summer is when you should forget about your shitty bunk bed at the house and come to where the real men reside.

Image via Shutterstock

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Swoop Johnson

I'd like to thank Jesus, my family, and Busch Light for getting me to where I am today.

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