White Loop Etiquette: A Guide for Late Night Riders

Everyone knows the routine: the weekend rolls around, and now that Happy Valley is at its frigid best, many on-campus students, especially freshman in East Halls, take advantage of UPUA’s White Loop extension. For anyone who has never had the fortune of riding it, to say that the crowds get a little rambunctious would be putting it mildly. But hope is not lost! Here are a few tips, try to keep them in mind as you embark on your White Loop journey this weekend. Trust me, it will make it easier for everyone involved.

#1. Keep the chanting to a minimum

Okay, I get it. It’s Penn State, and we’re filled to the brim with school spirit. The occasional “We Are” is cute, and shouting to a bus of drunk people who love Penn State just as much as you is fun, but remember this: less is more. One, maybe two, per ride is okay, but when the soundtrack for the entire ride from East Halls to the Beaver Hill stop is “We Are…Penn State!,” it gets to the point where I’m tempted to start answering Ohio State. This rule applies to singalongs as well.

#2. Hold on

There are over 40,000 people at Penn State. I really don’t want to meet you for the first time because you weren’t holding on and ended up in my lap. If you think you’ve mastered your balance enough not to hold on, think again. This isn’t Wii Fit. Let me put it simply for you:

(You + (Alcohol x Y)) + (White Loop + Not Holding On) + Sharp Turn = You + The Lap of What is Likely to be a Random Stranger.

I’m not a math major, nor do I ever plan on taking a GQ that isn’t statistics, but it’s pretty straightforward math. Especially when Y, or the pregaming variable, goes up, things are bound to get interesting.

This rule even applies if you’re one of the lucky ones to get a seat. I’ve actually seen somebody roll off their seat onto the bus floor. The floor’s covered in a grime mixed of who knows what, and, now that it’s snowy, it’s wet grime. There are handles on the seats for a reason. Just hold on, it’s for the best.

#3. Move all the way back

This should be pretty straight forward. As those who have experienced the White Loop after dark know, there are a lot of people piling on these buses. When the bus driver says move back, he isn’t doing it for his benefit. We’re all trying to get to the same place at the same time, so just listen to the driver.

If you’re worried about getting separated from your friends who snatched up coveted seats, sit on their laps. If they’re really your friends, it shouldn’t be too awkward.

#4. Don’t ride alone

The buddy system exists for a reason. Use it.

#5. Don’t argue with the driver

Do not ever get in a fight with the driver. If they tell you to do something, do it. If they tell you not to eat your Canyon Pizza, don’t eat your Canyon Pizza. No matter where you’re going, the ride isn’t long enough that you can’t wait. By fighting with the driver, you’re only delaying everyone else on the bus. Plus, if you fight and get kicked off, the wait for you gets that much longer. Just don’t fight the driver. If you do, I promise you will lose.

#6. Do not throw up on the bus

This should go without saying, but, as I learned last week, some people think the CATA buses are an acceptable place to relieve themselves. Needless to say, it wasn’t very pleasant for everyone else on the bus. Even if you think you absolutely cannot hold it in, at least try to make it to the next stop. No one should have to realize that the person behind you is vomiting on themselves. If you do, hopefully you’ll get lucky like me and they’ll miss you.

Learn and live these tips, and they’ll make the ride on the drunk bus easier for you and everyone involved.

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Ali Fogarty

Ali Fogarty is a senior from the suburbs of Philadelphia majoring in Public Relations and Political Science who's passionate about Netflix and everything bagels.

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