What kind of bubble of quirky young academics would Oberlin be without a little substance use and abuse? Exposure to social substance use is an element of almost any college experience. For better or worse, it’s something you will encounter at this big kid sleep-away camp we call Oberlin. Here’s what to expect.
The most accessible and widely used substances at Oberlin are alcohol and marijuana. For some reason lots of college kids like to smoke and drink. Beer, 40’s, wine, whiskey, moonshine, J’s, blunts, bowls, whatever–weed and alcohol facilitate social interactions, break ice, and wash away inhibitions during this coming of age phase we all pass through at Oberlin.
Where to find said elixirs of good times? As a first-year your best bet is to attend some parties; most serve cheap liquor and PBR, and have circles up in smoke out back. If you’re looking to stock up your dorm room bar there’s only one liquor store in town, Johnny’s. Don’t venture in without a good fake; they like to take bad ones and tape them to the front door as an example. Befriend an older student, hall mate, Resident Assistant, or a friend’s sibling. If you ask nicely, almost anyone will be happy to help when they go on their next booze run.
As far as finding weed goes; don’t try so hard. Weed is just about everywhere and you will meet a friendly student dealer before long. Ask around. Don’t be sketchy, pushy, or nervous. You’re not buying arms on the black market – it’s weed at the friendliest of liberal arts schools. You can ask an older student from a class or extracurricular, that sleepy-eyed kid with the skunky room on your hall, or even approach a circle of blazers at TGIF. It’s not hard to find if you make a slight effort.
Oberlin Lock Up
There’s no such thing. Safety and Security does not want to get you in trouble, so don’t be too reckless and you will have nothing to worry about. Staying out of trouble is easy as long as you make the effort to avoid Safety and Security (Oberlin College’s amiable police), and follow a few basic rules:
- Don’t have open containers outside.
- You can’t smoke weed anywhere, but just about.
- Drinking in your dorm rooms is a safe bet as long as you’re not too loud, know your RAs well, or know when S&S makes its daily rounds.
- Smoking is best done outdoors, but if the winter has got you hibernating use a window fan; the later at night the better, the less smoke the better (no blunts indoors is a good rule).
As far as trouble goes you will have to get written up a few times your first year before you face any serious repercussions like academic probation or suspension. The first few times you’re caught drinking or smoking you will be asked to make an appointment with someone in the administration, which will sound serious at first but will end in a quick survey and essay about substance abuse, and a multiple choice web quiz (E-Toke or E-Chug), which collects information about students’ substance habits for the college but is not attached to your name.
If confronted here are a few good things to remember:
- S&S cannot open your dorm door. You have to turn the knob yourself. This buys you a good couple of minutes to put everything away.
- S&S cannot open your drawers or cabinets. Keep everything out of sight, especially for the once a semester room checks (ask your RA).
- You have a lot of deny-ability. Just because it smells like weed on your hall doesn’t mean you were smoking it. They’re not going to take an air sample so don’t get intimidated. “It was probably that heady kid next door, officer…”
- You’re faster than them, but it’s a small campus and you will see them again. It’s not usually worth it.
- Smoke weed at the Wisdom Tree (the big wise one in North Quad) for extra wisdom. Listen and it will speak.
- In some dooms, you can take off the closet doors and put them over chairs for beer pong.
- Every store in town cards for alcohol and cigarettes.
- Weed is decriminalized in Ohio but will still cause you plenty trouble, especially if you’re caught with paraphernalia.
- Avoid Oberlin police if you can help it. They are serious and over funded.
- Hard drugs are scarce at Oberlin and fairly taboo.
- The Feve is the only Oberlin bar but will card everyone. For those over 21, it’s nice to remember that it sells 12 packs of Black Label long after Gibson’s and Johnny’s have closed each night.
- The fresh chocolate covered fruits at Gibson’s are the closest thing to legal drugs sold in Oberlin.
- The bead store sells the best papers in town upstairs and has a bunch of cool stuff to check out.
- Take psychedelics in the Arb while the weather is nice; it’s like a music festival out there while it’s warm.