Breaking news: mental pandemic paralyzes co-eds

Darren D'Altorio

Alert! Alert! Alert!

There is a mental disorder sweeping Kent State and perhaps other campuses nationwide.

It’s not attention deficit disorder. Thanks to the massive number of kids who peddle their Adderall prescriptions, that problem is in check. It’s not agoraphobia. The events of the past weekend automatically disprove the existence of that condition.

With certainty I can say the disorder is Senioritis – and good God, it’s spreading fast.

This is an annually recurring disorder. But this year a new strain has emerged. For the first time in history, a mental disorder has evolved, making it possible for it to be spread communicably.

Symptoms of the disorder include laziness, disdain for class work, perpetual excuses, erroneous justifications, mindless agatherings of peer groups, increased alcohol consumption, daily use of marijuana and other mind-altering drugs, suntans in late April and starting fires in the middle of the street.

If you witness any of these symptoms, it could be too late. Because of the advanced nature of this disorder, exposure in any capacity exponentially increases the risk of becoming a victim.

According to a study released by the fictitious Institute of Observing College Kids, the disorder is spread in two ways. The primary transmission is via interpersonal communication in all forms – face-to-face conversation, text messaging, phone conversations, e-mail, Facebook, etc.

The second form is visual transmission, whereby an innocent bystander notices people who have the disorder, becomes highly intrigued by their actions and begins to experience feelings of jealousy, selfishness, exclusion and joy simultaneously. Once these feelings set in, they trigger a compulsory response, forcing the student to engage in interpersonal communication about the feelings, spreading the disorder to his or her peer group unintentionally. The cycle repeats, repeats and repeats.

Unlike swine flu, closing businesses and schools and wearing goofy-ass masks will not prevent the spread of Senioritis. In fact, it will only make the problem worse by encouraging students to stay home from class and work, forgoing all real-world responsibility.

Kayla Shaw, chief researcher at the Institute of Observing College Kids, discovered the existence of this mental pandemic while she taunted her cats with a broccoli and cheese Hot Pocket and contemplated starting a project.

There is a way to reverse the effects, but it requires full cooperation by the administrative authorities of every scholastic institution. All classes and finals must be canceled from this point onward. All pending homework assignments must be declared null and void. Every available means of extra credit must be administered at once without question or concern of grade inflation. All available class days should be dedicated to either showing movies or sitting in fields practicing meditation.

Only when this happens will the students suffering from this disorder be cured. Until these conditions are met, professors should be aware that the problem will only grow more rampant.

Although called Senioritis, students from every grade level are equally susceptible to the disorder.

For more information concerning the disease and its effects on the population at large, contact the Institute of Observing College Kids’ local office at 330-673-7732 or 330-672-2210. Thank you.

Darren D’Altorio is a senior magazine journalism major and columnist for the Daily Kent Stater. Contact him at [email protected].