It’s the worst weekend of the semester for any fraternity — the weekend that nationals come to town. Our chapter’s recent check in with the good old national’s reps was nothing out of the ordinary. We received all of the usual criticisms about how we cannot justify taping pledges to a wall by calling it a brotherhood event, that sober brothers actually have to remain sober at parties, not just consume beverages with a lower alcohol content at the same excessive rate as everyone else, that the money we raise during philanthropy events actually has to be sent to philanthropic organizations, not just get deposited into our bank account, etc. Our nationals rep chose to close out the weekend in an interesting way, however, by suggesting that I come work for nationals after I graduate, which is quite possibly my worst nightmare.
The mere thought of this caused my post-graduate life flash before my eyes. Not only would my dreams of rolling up to the chapter house on alumni weekend and reliving the glory days through belligerently drunk activities be gone, you can forget the career aspirations of climbing the corporate ladder, making a hefty six-figure salary and retiring by the age of 55 as well.
Instead, life as I knew it would consist of flying economy class around the country to reprimand chapters for offenses I could care less about, having to actually enforce the fraternity’s no hazing policy, having to explain that slush funds for alcohol were frowned upon, despite spending a number of long hours nurturing and maintaining quite a few of them over the years myself, and being one of those hacks who only dresses in fraternity letter embroidered polo’s and khaki pants. Essentially it seemed like life would be like living inside of one endless leadership conference, killing all things fun and frat. Why was this monster trying to take away such a good thing I had going?
After attempting to respectfully decline his suggestion, I was met with an even more enthusiastic attempt to persuade me to turn to the dark side. He mentioned all of the “perks” that come with the job, including the opportunity to “give back to the fraternity,” as if hundreds of dollars in dues over the years isn’t enough, and even the fact that national’s reps get “personalized work bags.” I can’t think of any greater perk than a fucking personalized work bag. Forget trying to entice me with a competitive salary, or a nice signing bonus — nope, he went straight to the jugular by bringing out the personalized work bags.
It is almost sad in a way. These guys who were once shotgunning beers and raising hell like the rest of us have now been reduced to the type of dude who gets excited about the fact that his name is on a backpack. It’s like seeing your friend who got in a monogamous relationship. They are just a shell of their former selves. You can never come back from that..