Last weekend's matchup between TCU and UVA featured two major Conference teams battling for ESPN exposure while also trying to survive El Nino and its 90+ degree September temperatures. But did you also know that it was a matchup of two of the top ten party schools in the nation? WELL, DID YOU? According to Playboy Magazine - in this case you really ARE just reading it for the articles - Texas Christian University checks in at #9 on the list and UVA, believe it or not, clocks in all the way at the top spot, dethroning the University of Texas. Apparently having athletes who are good at murdering trumps having athletes that are only good at dealing drugs. Remember that time every girl you knew read Deadspin that one time when Spencer Hall and Drew Magary mentioned that TCU kids like to drink, just so they could link it to their Facebook pages? Well, you're in for an entirely new round of self-congratulatory status updates from girls who graduated 5+ years ago. Thanks, Playboy.
Playboy doesn't flesh out their reasoning for TCU specifically, but you can probably do the math on why we qualified - the overwhelmingly skewed ratio of girls to guys which increases the number of drunk/desperate hookups, the overemphasis on Greek life to the point that it makes everyone involved HYPER-Frat and alienates all the normals , and football success, to name a few. And while some of you might use this as an opportunity to put on your high-waisted, "WELL, BACK IN MY DAY THESE WHIPPERSNAPPERS COULDN'T HOLD MY JOCK IN A DRINKING CONTEST" pants, just remember that VANDERBILT is #7 and realize this isn't an exact science.
Playboy also gave their Honorable Mention rankings based on sex life, sporting life and nightlife. For each individual category they give a list of specific schools and, wouldn't you know, topping the "nightlife" segment are our pals to the east, SMU. Current SMU student Colton Moyer concurs, offering, "The bar scene at SMU definitely dominates. Everyone is all about going to the bar and balling out" If that DIRECT QUOTE doesn't tell you all you need to know about why we hate SMU, then I'm not sure you can ever be convinced.
I guess Playboy is basically awarding this to the city of Dallas and giving SMU all the credit; they easily could've just said "University of Texas at Dallas," "University of North Texas at Dallas," or "El Centro." Heck, they could've said, "Texas Woman's University," and the idea would've been the same. And while I'm not sure you should technically be able to count a college in a major metropolitan area among your "best nightlife" picks, here we are.
So, my first thought, on the surface of this is, "Does this mean Dallas has the best nightlife of any city in the United States?" Look at their other 4 picks - Stevens Institute of Technology (Hoboken, NJ - right across the Hudson from NYC, so NYC), University of Pennsylvania (Philly), Northwestern University (Chicago), Lehigh University (Bethlehem, PA - not really near anything. CURIOUS pick) and University of Denver. So, according to Playboy, Dallas, Philadelphia, Denver, New York AND BETHLEHEM are the consensus top 5 picks for nightlife options for a college student. Uhh, Hef - doesn't UNLV win this in an absolutely incredible landslide? Did you go to a Vegas club - or, heck, any club for that matter - in college? Have you been to a club since? Did you enjoy it? Yes? THEN GET THE HELL OFF MY BLOGLAWN. Seriously, though, if we're allowing any city with a University in its limits to be included, it's Vegas, it's New York, it's LA, and then it's everyone else.
This begs the question, "Has anyone from Playboy actually ever BEEN OUT in Dallas?" Holy hell! Dallas has two good bars. One of them - Slip Inn - is seedy, but in a good part of town and is usually only accessible after you've had 17 drinks because all they play is really loud rap music. The other one - Lee Harvey's - is seedy, but in a bad part of town and is only accessible early in the evening because you'll never get home, otherwise. Both bars offer the distinct opportunity for getting mugged and/or carjacked on the way home. Remember, these are the BEST Dallas has to offer.
For instance - there's a new bar in Dallas called "Sixth Street Bar." It is meant to resemble an "Austin Bar," which means absolutely nothing to me and probably nothing to most people from Austin, either. In Dallas, any bar with a patio and cans of PBR is considered an "Austin Bar." What makes Sixth Street Bar more Austinish than literally any other bar in the city is beyond me. Did they find their own homeless man who cross dresses and have him work the door? Did they hang more UT flags than an average bar? It's unclear.
Furthering the Austin theme, TCU hosts game watch parties for the young alumni in Dallas, EVEN WHEN THE GAMES ARE IN FORT WORTH, which is another piece altogether. They host them at a bar called J. Black's. Do you know where J. Black's originated? Austin. Also, it is maybe the worst bar in Dallas. If my satellite went out at my house, I'd listen on the radio before I'd go watch at J. Black's. And if my radio didn't work, I'd just read about it in USA Today 3 days later.
Two bars, both copping another town's mojo, one directly, one indirectly. And there are SO many other examples. Dallas bars fall into four categories - ones where divorcees are looking for a sugar daddy (any bar in Highland Park Village or a hotel), ones where the 30K millionaires strut their stuff (Uptown), those where you can feel comfortable despite your unfortunate tattoo and piercing situation (Greenville Avenue and Oak Cliff) and ones where SMU kids go to overdose on drugs...which is actually just their dorm rooms. So three categories. They are all awful in their own way. Last time I went to one of the divorcee-centric bars, a waitress knocked my wife's red wine glass into her face and did not stop to apologize. The last time I went to one of the 30K millionaire bars, I got strange looks for not wearing club clothes. The last time I went to one of the hipster bars, I was judged for preferring Stephen Malkmus' solo work over his Pavement output. I have never been to SMU's campus outside of gameday, and I will probably never do that again, either. You can never be too careful.
So in the article, it specifically mentions the Idle Rich Pub, the "campus hotspot that best describes the student body." Now, if we're talking about "Campus Bars," your options are the bars on SMU and Yale BLVD's which include the Barley House, Milo Butterfingers, the Green Elephant and the irritatingly named Across the Street Bar. Without going into too much detail, they are all terrible. I'm pretty sure I once did a Hate post about the Barley House that was one of my finer efforts. To summarize - even Grubes from the Ticket screaming Rage Against the Machine covers in the corner couldn't elevate that place to "inhabitable." Green Elephant isn't much better, and Ozona's is a restaurant.
The Idle Rich, though, is a different kind of terrible. For one, it's miles from SMU's campus, and therefore should not be credited to SMU. For another, while I'm sure SMU kids go there, Idle Rich is mostly just the dregs of the Uptown Crowd, sipping well vodka sodas and figuring out how to make the lease payment on the BMW they can't afford. Imagine Snookies in FW before it went away. Now, imagine those night's when you'd go, the line would be out the door and, once you got inside, you had no chance of getting a drink, going to the bathroom or even moving from your spot. Now, add a faux Pub theme, make the line twice as long, remove your friends from the equation and replace them with entitled assholes, and stick it in a parking lot with a crappy burger joint and that's Idle Rich. Sounds pleasant, eh? The type of place where you could, "Ball out?" The type of place you'd want to describe the student body of the school you attend? According to Playboy, Idle Rich could be the best bar in America.