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Sunday, March 3, 2024
The Observer

Notre Dame’s most overrated

I love this school — really, I do. But there are parts of daily life here I simply don’t understand. Below, you will find a list of grievances. Direct all thoughts and comments to the “contact Tom” button at the bottom.

Every food option in LaFun

Look, I know the dining halls have their challenges. But the LaFun alternatives? I have not been to Smashburger in three years—I’m not in the market for a grinding stomachache. Starbucks? I lack the patience for that line and the economic resources for those prices. Taco Bell? I don’t want the EPA to have to perform my autopsy. I don’t care that Subway was “the highest grossing location in America.” The only thing “gross” about it is what they try to pass off as food.

Dorm parties

I don’t love crowds, so perhaps it’s not surprising I hate the thought of 80 people crammed in a room only slightly wider than I am tall. These events are so warm that even the floor sweats. It’s hard to carry out conversations with a speaker blaring and every sound bouncing off the cinderblock walls. I shake my head every time I see a group of people getting hype to attend one of these functions. But maybe I’m just bitter. I took an (inadvertent) elbow straight to the stomach at a “social gathering” freshman year and subsequently declared, “Never again.” Plus, fire hazard much?

Tailgating

Too much depends on the day. Tailgating is far more pleasant on a spectacular September afternoon than it is on a frozen November morning. Some game days I wake up, rearing to go. On others, my alarm goes off and I groan. Not because I don’t appreciate generous hospitality and spending time with friends, but rather because the thought of spending eight hours on my feet in a blizzard is a sad way to start your day. Maybe this entry would not have made this list if I was Canadian.

The snowball fight

A light dusting of snow and overeager freshmen are a lethal combo. When you have a snowball fight when blades of grass are still visible, it quickly turns into a literal mudslinging contest. Which is why I was excited when, for the first time in my undergraduate career, last week’s first snow brought some substantial snowfall. I had a blast — until I took an iceball from an unidentified attacker straight to the forehead. I had a headache for a week.

Touchdown Jesus

Notre Dame is a beautiful campus. There’s the Dome, which shimmers in the midday sun; the breathtaking Basilica of the Sacred Heart; the understated Grotto. And then there’s tacky, quasi-cubist Jesus. One of these is not like the others.

Touchdown Jesus does not fit the campus aesthetic — at all. I’m all for glorifying God, but is that really how we decided to do it? With a super weird representation of the Messiah and a bunch of other difficult to identify biblical figures? Plus, we need to discuss the moniker. Whoever gave the mosaic that name had definitely never seen a touchdown signal. Jesus’ arms are far too perpendicular for that. The nickname is undeserved.

Contact Tom at tnaatz@nd.edu

The views expressed in this column are those of the author and not necessarily those of The Observer.