All but a few study room keys hang from the library’s key rack. The cold and wet grass of the intramural fields hasn’t seen competition in months. Canvas to-do lists are barren. While about a thousand or more students consider Step Sing the most stressful time of the year, the rest of Samford’s campus scrambles to fill the time.
Many students get so bored they do the unfathomable: they work ahead on assignments. Others catch up on streaming services, searching for a new show to binge. Some students doomscroll through YikYak or TikTok in search of a laugh. The overall theme is searching for something, even if it is inherently drab, to preoccupy themselves.
Overall, non-steppers can recognize the inherent bizarro world Samford is thrown into during January.
“I feel like the mood and atmosphere is different; I feel like the library is kind of bare right now because everyone is in rehearsal,” Lemus observed. “I’m guessing some people are more stressed, some are more tired. So it is just kind of a weird atmosphere.”
The trees are bare, the January light is low, and the steppers walk around with eye bags and slouching shoulders groaning about Step Sing like zombies searching for brains. The Caf and UC, the usual hubs of campus, are lonely at night.
Despite the melancholy, being a non-stepper does not inherently mean disliking Step Sing. However, it often means that the non-steppers must hear their friends complain or talk about their shows frequently. This can become quite annoying, according to sophomore Kristen Lemus, a non-stepper.
“If you complain about something you signed up for, then why did you sign up for it?” asked Lemus.
Another point of contention among the student population is the eventual Step Sing champion. Many will be upset with the committee’s choice of winner, and it is almost guaranteed that most of the student body will hear rants about which group should have won.
In defense of the majority, the lives of Step Sing participants become hectic, which can rub off on the lives of non-steppers. However, campus life, in some aspects, is as enjoyable as it possibly can get during Step Sing season, and this often convinces non-steppers to join a show the following year.
Non-stepping sophomore Cordelia Lampton said, “I personally think that Samford has so much to offer, but I think Step Sing is the best part of Samford.”
Overall, life for non-steppers changes dramatically in day-to-day activity. However, Step Sing entertains even those who don’t sign up for it. Whether that entertainment is consuming the drama or encouraging participants, Step Sing is responsible for both the bareness and buzz of Samford’s campus in January.