You are creepy.

There is no way around it. You are creepy by definition. You are a graduate student.

As a former graduate student, I know this first-hand. But there is hope for you. First, you must accept your shortcomings. Second, I can provide some practical advice on how to beat the odds.

Your Shortcomings

As a graduate student, you already have two strikes against you. Why two strikes, you ask? Well they have names, these so-called "'strikes.' I call them age and location.

You are creepy because of your age. You took a few years off between college and grad school, and the freshmen are highly suspicious of your strange late-20's age group. You might be losing your hair. You are too old for a goatee or a baseball hat. The college girls wonder, "Does he like the same music? Why does he keep talking to me about The Strokes? Why does he keep reciting lines to me from John Tucker Must Die?"

"Hey fellas! Where's the party?
I brought my Peter Gabriel cassettes!
It's ironic, because as a senior the age difference works to your advantage. But, you have now crossed the line- from "'mature senior' to "'weird guy who lives in graduate housing.' It's not that there is a generation gap, it's more of a generation crack. None of these kids appreciate the erotic impact that a certain scene in Fast Times at Ridgemont High had on your development.

You are also creepy because you live, as already mentioned, in graduate housing. It's not a dorm. It's not a fraternity house. It's not an off-campus apartment. No one seems happy. No one is stumbling around drunk. And there are lots of foreign students there.

Welcome to graduate housing a.k.a. the Land of the Walking Dead. Like some poor sucker who has already seen The Ring, these people have all seen "'The Real World.' And here things are suddenly "'unacceptable.' As a college student it is acceptable to vomit in your girlfriend's pillowcase. As a college student it is acceptable to wear your "'Hooters More Than a Mouthful' t-shirt to class. You can't even where that shirt indoors anymore.

Graduate housing is a sad purgatory-like place. Most undergraduates try to avoid it like the plague. In order to meet undergrad girls, one must venture out to the campus and follow the rules listed below.

Beating the Odds

Follow these rules to increase your chances. As a basic guideline- the less effort you make the more success you will have. And always remember that you are creepy.

1. Do not audit undergraduate classes.
2. Do not sleaze around undergraduate dorms.
3. Do not wear your graduate school sweatshirt.
4. Do not put your graduate school sticker on your car.
5. Do, however, offer to take your sister's friends out to dinner to a somewhat-nice Italian restaurant.
6. Order lots of wine.
7. Include all of her friends, guys too.
8. Do not invite the good looking guy fiend that is on the soccer team.
9. Do not try to impress them with your knowledge wine.
10. Do not reference the movie "'Sideways.'
11. Do not talk about college boys being "'so immature.'
12. Do not ask them what their major is.
13. Do not go with them to their sorority formal.
14. Stop acting so creepy.

If these rules are closely followed you might have a chance of bringing an undergraduate girl home with you. Unfortunately, you live in graduate housing so no undergraduate is actually going to enter your home.

But bringing an undergraduate girl back to the front door of your graduate dorm is in itself a small coup. You should reward yourself with a private viewing of Phoebe getting out of the pool. You are a grad student- this is the closest you are going to get to any action.