The Beerfest Embarassment

Andrew H. Berkowitz

Can I ask you for a favor? If ever in the future you should have an opportunity to plug something on the talk-show circuit and that something is going to embarrass me, could you just not mention Colgate? This fall, the movie Beerfest will be opening in theaters nationwide and in the limited press releases I’ve seen, the creative force behind this movie have repeatedly mentioned that they all met while at Colgate University. Among my friends in the post-collegiate world, I am in contact with tons of people who didn’t go to Colgate. These people have the not entirely inaccurate impression of a campus where white people spend four (or, in my case, more) years getting drunk, listening to jam bands and awkwardly tongue-kissing other white peole in the basements of smelly fraternities. I’ve tried to explain to them that some of these fraternities didn’t smell so awful and that jam bands are fun to listen to when you’re 19 and the whole room is spinning. Nevertheless, it’s an image that I’d rather not have reinforced everywhere.

However, as funny as Beerfest may or may not be, the commercials are chock full of scantily clad white people drinking beer and laughing at foreigners.

This is only going to reinforce people’s negative impression of the school. So, if in the future any of you go on talk shows to promote some equally frat-tastic device or film, be it a vanilla-flavored tranquilizer to slip into women’s drinks or an MP3 player that broadcasts Grateful Dead concerts in reverse or a television series about seven white guys who spend money like it’s their job and are pursuing the Guinness Book of World record for largest beer bong, can you just say you went to a big 10 school instead?

I don’t care which one.