How to Spiral After Getting Waitlisted at Your First-Choice College

Illustration for article titled How to Spiral After Getting Waitlisted at Your First-Choice College

You've been waitlisted. Now what?

Didn't the interview with the admissions counselor go well? She laughed warmly when you told her the anecdote about your father whispering that you'd eventually go to this school — his alma mater — the first time he cradled your infant body in his arms, didn't she? You fool. She wasn't laughing warmly, she was humoring you. And what were you wearing? A cardigan? Is this 1955? Is this Peggy Sue Got fucking Married? You should have worn something sluttier. Or no, better yet, you should have shown up in full university mascot regalia to demonstrate how open your heart is these days and how you're trying to say yes to everything. Yes to new experiences! Yes to pre-med! Yes to AP English credits transferring over from your high school! Just say yes.


What was it that the counselor said as she guided you out the door? "We'll be in touch." We'll be in touch? Why would she say that if she didn't mean it? You had had a nice time together. There was that time when your knees bumped into each other and she said "Excuse me" and you shouted "Sorry! Old Betty Knock Knees over here!" while pointing at yourself with your both your thumbs. That was a fun moment, at least that's what you thought, but her name doesn't even appear on the wait list letter you received in the mail. Also, in the mail? She couldn't, like, pick up a phone or sit you down for coffee and tell you to your face that the university isn't quite ready to commit to you?

You know what, she probably doesn't even know that this happened. You should call her. Or shoot her a text. Yeah, play it cool and definitely shoot her some quick texts. Or you could poke her on Facebook. Is poking over? Poking is over, isn't it? Just play it safe and email her something short and alluring like How could you do this to me? No, that's too defensive. Please know that I am still very much interested in attending your institution in the fall. Yeah, okay, Captain Dorkball. Dude, just be cool.

Sent Friday, May 8th, 11:42 PM: Hi:)

Sent Friday, May 8th, 11:48 PM: Thinking of you;)

Sent Saturday, May 9th, 12:04 AM: [Supernatural GIF]

Sent Saturday, May 9th, 12:07: I love you I love you I love you.

Okay, so she hasn't responded. Nor has the Dean or any of the other college employees that you emailed. They're probably just busy with work and family stuff. When they see your message, they'll get back to you right away. Why wouldn't they? You're an independent, smart and attractive woman. Any university would be lucky to have you. Go look in the mirror and tell yourself how independent, smart and attractive you are. Out loud. Don't you feel better now? Of course, you do. Check your inbox. Still empty. Email that you love them again.

Stop kidding yourself. You're disgusting. You're an idiot. Of course, they don't want you — they could have any girl in the world. Go back to your reflection. Look how you hold your arms and how they just hang there. The students who got in probably use their arms way better than you do — you saw how the others gestured at things on your campus-wide tour, but you stupidly chose not to join in because you thought it was showboating. Well, YOUR MISTAKE and now your education is ruined all because of some stupid arm movements.

Oh, god. Your inbox is still empty. Do you think that they're getting emails from other people on the wait list and won't even notice yours? Write again though this time make them jealous. Tell them that one of the Seven Sisters is sweating you hard. No, dummy! That will make them think that you're not serious. Send them gifts. Yeah, send them a gift a day because no one else is doing that.


Make a list of gifts now:

  • Flowers
  • A framed picture of yourself
  • Baked goods with a note that says "The next box will have razor blades in them if you don't let me in. Haha, just joking. Too bad I can't major in jokes :-P"
  • A video reel of your family, friends and teachers saying nice things about you, spliced with that sped-up footage of the decaying fox corpse that video artists like so much.
  • A mix tape. (A side: "You Belong with Me," "Call Me Maybe," "And I'm Telling You" from Dreamgirls. B side: "Dancing On My Own," "If You Don't Know Me By Now," "You Oughta Know.")
  • Think of better gifts.

How can you still have heard nothing? Soul Man yourself. Oh, no. Now you've gone much too far.


On a College Waiting List? Sending Cookies Isn’t Going to Help [NYT]

Image via Getty.



I think I am really screwing my future kids by living in areas with good schools. I got into every school to which I applied with scholarships because I was from Appalachia and had pretty good SAT and ACT scores.