An event is defined as ‘a thing that happens, especially one of importance,’ denoting a ‘one size fits all’ meaning. However, I believe that our perception of an event has extended beyond this and further constructed to fit the social norms; this transformation of events has become a problem we must deal with. For example, as a student, the term itself is synonymous with a party, a show, or a festival. Each time we host an event, it appears that we try so hard to create something of importance and along the way, we forget what truly makes an event. For example, a student house party is an event that can be broadly understood as a gathering of people under one roof. Yet, partying culture, especially within a university is based on generating excitement and oftentimes creates an event that extends beyond this simple meaning. This sort of culture reflects the entertainment industry where we have constant representation of new faces and ‘typical’ parties that negate the true meaning behind an event itself. So, in turn, events as we know them have a repeating cycle where people strive to obtain excitement but end up far from it.
Society and culture can change the true sense of something, especially when concerning human interactions. For example, events were first understood as ‘a thing that happens, especially one of importance,’ however, it has transformed into a competition between people to find the next biggest excitement. This race for the ‘next best thing’ has clouded the meaning of events and creates an environment where people lose themselves and their connections in the battle of fitting into the pressures of norms.
The pandemic taught us to change the way we see those around us. The events that have created blurry memories and crazy experiences are something seemingly unrealistic, especially as we are all distanced into a much-needed isolation. Our collective experience has truly allowed both myself and society as a whole to reflect on the things we must hold dear to ourselves. Through this reflection, the need to reorient our perception of what an event is and how our future endeavors to socialise more fully will benefit us; the future benefit being that we will treasure the bonds we have and have fun regardless of the event itself. An event is what you make of it—nothing more, nothing less. The fun is generated by the people around you, not the event itself. We must accept the reality that the coronavirus has given us and reflect on the benefits that distancing has given us through appreciating the little things in life. The pandemic has brought about much-needed change in this toxic cycle of the event. It forces us to appreciate those around us rather than celebrate party culture. I encourage you all to change your perception about what contributes to an event and have fun without worrying about creating seemingly fake excitement.