The Kids from the Hall -- dorm life at UF
Five honor students from 1999 Weaver Four dorm talk about what they remember most about their best times at UF.
By Jessica Strul
It's movie night in Weaver Four and 10 floor mates sit on the common-area floor watching an old 24-inch Panasonic TV. Sanjeeves Sirpal, resident prankster, quickly decides to spice things up. From the outside window he moons the movie watchers. Nick Everly, Sirpal's best friend, deemed the scheme film-worthy and started taping. Due to the pressure, the windowpane shatters and Sanjeeves drops to the ledge under the window, pretending to fall.
"The video ends with me," Sirpal says, "with my pants around my ankles asking, 'OK, you guys are my best friends; will someone please come to the bathroom, and tell me if I have glass in my ass?'"
"I laughed so hard; I couldn't breathe for five minutes," says Mike DelPiano, one of Sirpal's roommates at Weaver. "The next morning I was sore from laughing. That was, by far, the funniest moment in my life."
That moment was caught on camera for Sirpal, known as Jeeves to his closest friends. Most students have few recorded tapes, if any, of their time spent at UF. With four years -- or longer -- of memories to choose from, picking a few out of what would be a library of 8,500 standard four-hour VHS tapes could be a daunting task.
Five honor students from 1999 Weaver Four dorm talk about what they remember most, their mental video library, five years later.
"Some of the best times in my life were just sitting there until 6 in the morning," says Sirpal. "The first weekend, we went to a strip club in Tampa. I knew then that crazy times were to come."
The personality composition of Weaver Four was a product of the housing division's random roommate assignment. How they meshed with each other, the dynamic of the floor, set the stage for a unique final edit.
"It's one of those things that happens once and won't be repeated," Jeeves says.
The plot carried out by the characters on Weaver Four is strikingly relatable to many Gators' undergraduate experience. The group, though, sees their dorm-life years as unique. The details, stories and friendships make the experience their very own.
They earned their nickname 'Weaver Four' in part because they spent much of their time partying. The Weaver Four bashes received as much acclaim around campus as Jeeves' rear racked up internationally.
"Once I was filling out a raffle ticket at the mall and the girl who was handing them out saw where I lived. She was like, 'wow, great party last night,'" Jeeves says. "We were known around campus as 'Weaver Four.'"
Thinking back to their time spent in Weaver, the guys agree it's an odd stage in your life when you're caught between the funniest moments and the most serious.
"When you get to college you think you know everything, but you know nothing," DelPiano says.
"It's a time when you have the freedom of an adult, but not necessarily the responsibilities," Jeeves says. "If there is ever a time to focus on fun -- college is it."
But Jeeves also knows that college can be a serious time.
When fellow floor mate Chad Cray was paralyzed in a motorcycle accident his sophomore year, many of his friends on Weaver Four reprioritized their lives.
"College itself is a major life event," Cray says. "We were all with each other when we were figuring out who we were and what we want to do."
To the men of Weaver Four, the camera was rolling the day Cray was paralyzed, the day Jeeves pulled the prank of the decade and when each of these hall mates moved out and into the real world. Some memories can never be cut, edited or erased.