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Damn, UVM bares it all

Life Is Good Column


Published: Thursday, May 2, 2013

Updated: Thursday, May 2, 2013 21:05


The naked bike ride has come and it has gone. 

Boobs flopped freely out of bras while weenies dangled left and right. 

On a scale of one to nakey, we got real nakey.

Yet while the ride started as a two-person celebration of classes being over, it has evolved into a celebration of life, of UVM being weird and open about it.

While UVM is known for its lively student body in terms of protesting, most outsider look at our end of the semester tradition and see it as another group of students rallying to voice our opinions.

Those outsiders are wrong. 

The naked bike is one of the only times as students where the majority of our peers come together. 

Sure we may be naked, but that’s just how the magic groovy UV works.

On this night of nights, UVM in its entirety gathers at the central campus loop to toss their clothes in the air like its Woodstock all over again. 

Nonetheless every semester there’s a sizable amount of—questionably creepy—onlookers who come to cheer their friends on. 

These people are the support group in this “burning man festival” version of a marathon.

Other schools may have weekly tailgates and parades in celebration of their schools football teams and what not, but at UVM this aspect of school is absent. 

This isn’t necessarily a bad thing, for with the absence of general school spirit in the athletics department, we find instances of spirit in a different fashion.

Who needs a kickass football stadium in Vermont? 

To our west stands Adirondacks hugging the shores of Lake Champlain, to our right, endless hiking trails, kayaking rivers and places to climb.

As we walk through campus we are amidst students who have gotten as many as 100 days of skiing in, others who woke up at the crack of dawn to get a quick kayak in before a 10:00 class. 

Not students who hole up all day.

If we wanted a football stadium we all would have thrown our drug rugs and Phish records in the trash and shipped off to University of Illinois to enjoy the flatlands.

While I think athletics are awesome to watch, and I’ve been an avid Cubs fan—hoping this century will turn out better than the last—UVM just offers so much more.

That’s why we all find ourselves here in the weird state of Vermont. 

We’re not sitting on the sidelines cheering for a football team; we’re off doing better things; hiking, protesting and running around naked.

On a side note, a wise man once told me that the funniest part of the naked bike ride is to wear as much as possible, while not wearing anything at all. 

In the past this has brought out apparel featuring climbing harness to paint, cow hats to flag-capes.

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