PDA: Public displays of “are you serious?!”

by Page Forrest and Jack Russell

You all know that one couple. The one that’s always holding hands, even in ninety-degree weather. The one that’s cuddling in the booths at McClurg. The one stealing kisses before class. Whether it’s a couple you went to high school with or people who go to Sewanee now, chances are you’ve dealt with PDA. Formerly defined as “Public Displays of Affection,” PDA has also been defined as “nauseating,” “unnecessary,” and “flat-out bizarre.”

We, the authors, of course, would never engage in such inappropriate displays. Who would want to be anywhere near a couple that was affectionate in public? Every day is not Valentine’s Day, people. We don’t need any further perpetuation of the attitude created by that exploitative Hallmark holiday.

However, if you think you may be at risk of being affected by PDA, we’ve created a handy list of the people most likely to be involved in or affected by this uncomfortable behavior so you can keep an eye out.

Roommates: First of all, I am so, so sorry if your roommate is in a relationship. Unless his or her “S.O.” has a room of their own, you’ve probably been looking for some new places to sleep. Here are a few choice locales: a friend’s room (if they’re single), a park bench (if there isn’t some oblivious couple hogging it), a common room (again, check for oblivious couples), or the ground (see list items #2 and #3).

Upperclassmen: You’re about to graduate. You’re cynical. Even if you’re in a relationship, you’ve most likely been with your partner long enough that PDA isn’t much of a thing. Let’s face it, most instances of PDA occur in the freshmen class, and brand-new couples (also usually freshmen). Chances are, if you see a couple of freshmen smooching on a bench, you’ll be caught between the desire to laugh or tell them that their relationship probably won’t make it past the end of the semester. Ouch.

Single Folks: The single ladies and gents of campus arearguably the ones hit the hardest by severe PDA. Whether you’re perfectly comfortable with your single lifestyle or just getting over a bad break-up, every touch, every nuzzle is a reminder that you are alone. No one needs to deal with that! It’s not fair to you, and it’s completely unnecessary. If you feel the urge to punch the next couple you see, however, please restrain yourself. We try not to encourage violence. (Also, it might be us. Please don’t.)

That all being said, PDA sucks. Find a better way to spend your time. Drugs, not hugs.