By Anna Lipari 

GARDINER LOUNGE– Returning to classes on Monday after a big weekend can be rough at the best of times, but the post-Fetish letdown is especially notable. How should you behave in an early morning English class, staring across the table at a classmate who you watched being walked on a leash like a dog? Is there an appropriate way to acknowledge the fact that your friends, your roommates, and the freshmen you tutor in the Math Lab have now seen you in an outfit skimpier than the college’s budget for student wages? The B&S interviewed seasoned third- and fourth-year Fetish-goers for their tried-and-tested advice for underclassmen struggling with post-Fetish blues.

Jared Salamander, ‘23 advises his fellow students to let their freak flag fly: “Having a couple kinks is totally normal. Why not just own it? Maybe the girl making awkward eye contact with you in the mailroom was totally turned on by your nipple clamps and assless jorts.” Salamander shrugs. “It hasn’t worked for me yet, but who knows?”

Sarah Walker, ‘22 suggests that being seen in a racy getup isn’t that big a deal. “Fetish is about dressing up as something silly and goofy; you don’t actually have to be into whatever it is.” When questioned by B&S writers about where she acquired the hyper-realistic and expensive-looking wolf tail she wore to Fetish, Walker suddenly remembered she had an urgent meeting and quickly exited the publications office. 

Casey Chandrasekar, ‘23 shows off a set of handcuffs still locked around their wrist. “I started to panic when I woke up on Saturday morning and realized I’d drunkenly lost the key the night before, but it’s actually not that bad! When you think about it, the cuffs are really a cool accessory, like an avant-garde statement about the way we are shackled to fast fashion and beauty standards. Plus, I’ve made a new friend!” Chandrasekar gestures to Lucy Mills, ‘24, locked into the other cuff. The two, who were complete strangers before Friday, have been inseparable ever since. 

“It’s an odd twist of fate,” Mills agrees. “But our schedules work out so we can alternate who’s in class, and my boss at the Grill doesn’t mind me bringing Casey in with me as long as I can make smoothies one-handed. And we’re like, suuuuuuuper compatible in the bedroom.”

However, many students seem content to leave Fetish behind them. “It’s like a parallel reality, or a pleasant dream, you know?” said Derek Perez, ‘22. “It happened, and I had fun, but I don’t need to acknowledge to my friends that we all stripped down and sucked  marinara sauce off each other’s toes. Not until next year, at least.”