“Are you a freshman?” I slurred through a vodka cranberry haze as I flirted with the first hot guy I met during NSO this semester. With a disgusted look, my almost–hookup hissed “senior in the house” before disappearing into the crowd. Excuse my lack of judgment, hot Beta boy. I apologize. I really do. You were pretty cute.

It’s part of the checklist. Good looking. Check. Confident. Check. Drunk but not sleazy. Check. Next I wonder what year he is. Sophomore and up—I breathe a sigh of relief (acceptable, has potential, why not?) Answer “freshman,” though, and I’ll make small talk about living in the Quad and sneak away within about two minutes.

Yes, there’s something endearing about the way a freshman boy’s eyes light up when I mistake him for an upperclassman. It’s every guy’s fantasy to hook up with an older girl. Walking out of Rumor with an older girl earns boys high–fives and shoutouots. It’s the peak of manhood. When it comes to courtship, men love the hunt. The harder the better. But when I get into a cab after a downtown, it better not be with someone with a fake ID.

Here’s the thing. Regardless of how good–looking a guy is,  I’ll most likely receive judgmental glances and a lecture on immaturity if he’s my junior. I can just hear other girls saying, “Like, don’t you want to get with someone who has potential for a serious relationship (or, like, marriage)?”

Why this stigma against walk of shaming from the Quad? A walk of shame is a walk of shame, regardless of whether it’s from the Quad, the Radian or Harrison. The fact that your hookup is a freshman should not make it more or less shameful. Last year, I met a 15–year–old prodigy in my math class. There’s also the 23–year–old globe-trotter who lived in my friend’s hall. Both were freshmen. And both were hot.

If age is what’s in question, let’s stop asking it. I’ll give 100 brownie points to the next guy who doesn’t ask my age before he asks for my number. We’re all in college. By day, he might be swiping his meal card, but by night you might be swiping his v–card. With only a four–year range, it’s not like age matters that much anyways, whether he’s just a DFMO or hubby potential. If you’re hooking up with someone younger, more power to you. JLo’s boyfriend is 18 years younger and if anything, that makes her ten times cooler.