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Small handwriting sample of Kristin's First-Year Student Journals, link to journals home page
Kristin hangs out on campus

Kristin's miniature straw box that looks like the White House

Kristin wears her sunglasses while hanging out on campus

Halloween at Sixth Street: People in various stages
of dress and undress, sanity and insanity
All walking in circles listening to loud music,
Hanging on to the closest person they know
and trying not to get lost.

No, this journal is not about “Kristin Gone Wild.”

Halloween is my favorite holiday. Now, I know that Sixth Street is not in any way shape or form associated with the university. Sixth Street has no academic value, nor is it to be considered edifying in any way. Nonetheless, most UT students will make at least one pilgrimage to Sixth Street and I would like to share mine.

The week following Halloween, from all of my projections, appeared to be academically intense and I felt I needed to depressurize before turning in papers and studying for two tests. I promised myself that I would never go to Sixth Street until I was 21. I thought it was useless to even attempt to go before then. And so, Halloween, my personal favorite holiday, approached. I wanted to party (in moderation) before I was chained to my desk and a computer screen for the rest of the week.

I wanted to find a nice little Halloween party equipped with junk food and horror flicks or perhaps a costume ball. No luck. In the meantime I was busy assembling my costume. I traversed up and down Guadalupe and finally settled on the purchase of some accessories to complement some costume items already in my closet. (Yes, I keep costumes in my closet.) On All Hallows Eve I transformed myself into a darling flapper. My flapper costume constituted a little black dress, little black sandals, a red feather boa, gloves and some tawdry jewelry and excessive makeup. I thought I looked charming.

And then some of my friends told me they were going to Sixth Street. I kept changing my mind about it. One minute I really wanted to go and get my pre-ordained pilgrimage over with. The next minute, I was really nervous and thinking, “Me? Freshman? Sixth Street? At night? Can I handle this? Should I do this?” Of course, I went, or else this whole journal would be one big joke.

It’s interesting what you can learn about people from their costumes. Some are elegant, some people wore matching costumes, some are grungy, some earthy and some are just plain frightening when given the chance. For about two hours my friends and I fussed over each other’s makeup and hair, trying to create various looks and pooling our cosmetic resources together to make everyone look splendid.

And then we were off…. The traffic was horrible on Halloween night. In some places it was more like a parking lot than an expressway. My friends and I ended up at Riverside Drive and after some brief distractions there we took the E-bus to Sixth Street and the visual extravaganza began. Halloween on Sixth Street is like a giant competition for who can have the most absurd or curious costume. The costume must be creative, unique and unexpected; it must have the element of surprise.

In many respects, it was like a circular parade of angels, devils, superheroes, monarchs and animals. There were some really funny costumes. One guy was dressed as a traffic cone and actually sat in the middle of the street for a while. That was awesome. People were bumping up against each other and my feet were getting blistered from walking in heels. I felt like I was back in kindergarten because I had to hold my buddies’ hands, or else I was going to get lost. Occasionally some would lag behind and we’d have to pull them up to speed or yell at them. But hey, that’s what friends are for.

I must say my evening was anticlimactic…no hedonism or debauchery to report. I just walked in circles for a few hours with some friends I trusted. I woke up the next morning with some souvenirs from my excursion: blisters from heels, a cough from too much second-hand cigarette smoke, raunchy looking hair and strange dreams about angels, ninjas and traffic cones. But now I do have my badge of pseudo-maturity and vainglory: I’ve been to Sixth Street. Look out world: Bourbon Street for the Final Four?! (Yeah right.)

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