Grinnell's Bastion of Journalistic Integrity

Month: April 2023 Page 1 of 2

Dear B&S: Where Should I Live Next Year?

By Binston Swongo (Edited by A. Lipari)

A reader writes:

Dear Binston Swongo,

What dorm should I move into next year? I’m a first year, and I’m really worried about being stuck in the wrong place for the next year!

Dear first year, 

You’ve come to the right place. I’ve lived in practically every dorm on campus over my many years at Grinnell, and I’m pretty sure I can give you a good representation of what it’s like to live in each of them. 

James: I lived here my first year at Grinnell. A hall full of memories: my mother and father helping me set up my brand-new twin-XL bedding, turning a white box of a room into somewhere that felt like home. Tentative new friends blooming into what would become lifelong companions as the golden light of August turned to the first snows of October. A downside to living here was the way the loggia was locked at night to keep us from getting up to anything improper. But pro tip, there’s a garbage can under a drainpipe at the back of James Hall that will give you access to the second floor windows. I’d recommend this dorm to any peppy young coeds with decent arm strength. 6/10.

Main: I never lived here myself, but she did. I spent a lot of time there, during my coldest winter on campus. The walk from the academic center of campus to her remote domicile was long, brutal, and freezing, but I was warmed from within by the promise of seeing her face, of feeling her fiery touch. The room was small, but we could have made do in a shoebox, as long as it was our private sanctuary, as long as we could be close to each other. Even now, I can’t pass by that corner of campus without a poignant sting inside my chest. I recommend Main if you’ve got fire in your heart– but be careful, in case it ever goes out. 7/10.

The B&S Answers Frequently Asked Questions From Prospective Parents

By Catherine Terelak

This Decision Season, the B&S has teamed up with the Department of Admissions to address prospective parents’ burning questions about life at Grinnell College. Submitted anonymously, each of the questions selected for publication addresses a core aspect of the Grinnell experience, and we at the B&S have tried to answer as honestly as possible. 


Q: Do students have sex?

A: Yes.


Q: Are there drugs on campus?

A: Yes.


Q: What’s the drinking culture like?

A: Yes. 


Q: Are you drunk right now?

A: *gurgling noises* 


Q: What’s the food like in the Dining Hall?

A: It’s served three times a day, trough-style. Typically, you have your dry feeds, your slops, and your giblets. Cold gruel is available all week, but Sunday is Hot Gruel Day! The line is a mile long and you have to perform a special dance to get your food. 

Administration Follows Through On Promise To Make College More Transparent

by Dale Bell

NOLLAN HOUSE—In a press conference held late last week, college officials announced that they would be giving in to demands from student groups to make Grinnell more transparent. Small and sad organizations like the Union and the S&B had been pushing the College to adopt more transparent processes for years, but it was only after the most powerful student organization on campus, the B&S, threw its support behind the measures last week, that the College announced they would be ceding to student demands. 

For more on this story, the B&S spoke with Administration official Markus deSade: “At Grinnell, we believe in values and value beliefs, one of which is now transparency. After hearing the overwhelming support for increased transparency among the student body, we knew that it was our duty to respond to these requests in the most perplexing way possible. So, together, with our crack team of administrators, magicians, and magical administrators, we are happy to introduce Grinnell 2.0, Transparent Grinnell!”

Before B&S reporters could ask any follow up questions, deSade started to rapidly disappear. “Transparent Grinnell!” he cried as left the Pubs Office, the amorphous silhouette of the man that started the interview.

B&S Hires Baby Writer Due to New Iowa Child Labor Laws 

Disclaimer: The following is the inaugural piece from our newly-hired writer,​ Timmy H, age 7; our youngest ever writer, thanks to Iowa’s newly relaxed child labor laws. We cannot confirm the factual accuracy of any of his statements, nor do we stand by any of them if the campus chooses to cancel this baby. Timmy was compensated $3.00 and some leftover candy we found in the cracks of the B&S futon for his time. 

GRINNELL ELEMENTARY SCHOOL– I’m not allowed to use the computer because my mom says it’s gonna make my eyes bad, but I got special permission because I am a job guy now. I even gots one of those ties with the clips like my dad wears to work. I look so amazing. The other workers look stinky. Idk what is up with them complaining about money at this college either, $9.27 is good enough for me! I could buy so many Pokemon with that kind of cash. 

Editorial: The New Child Labor Laws Are A Win For Iowa

By Ethan Hughes

The current Iowa legislature has passed countless reprehensible bills this legislative session: from banning discussion of LGBTQ+ issues in schools, to attempting to ban abortions, to the legalization of puppy-hunting by beating them to death with kittens. Truly, a laundry list of unpopular evil policies designed to hurt people and flex their unchallenged power. Despite all these dystopian policies, the Iowa legislature has finally passed a law that Grinnell has united behind instead of against. 

Bill 542 helps loosen Iowa’s restrictive child labor laws, lowering the minimum age of workers’ safety restrictions on work they can do and shielding corporations from liability when those irresponsible pre-teens accidentally lose a finger. It also now allows 16 year olds to serve alcohol. 

Upon passage of the bill, Grinnellians celebrated across campus. The administration, while generally against student interests, agreed on the benefits of the bill. When asked for a comment, Human Resources Coordinator Startum Jung said, “The new law will allow us to improve Grinnell College for everyone. We can lower the wages of the professors so their kids will have to work to support their families and that will help us restaff D-hall and destroy this impetuous Union. Wait, that was off the record, you can’t report that. If you report that, your precious single in East might just become a forced quad in James. YOU UNDERSTAND! Good, now back on the record. This new bill will help create a new generation of industrious Grinnellians to exploit for their great work ethic.” 

First Annual ZitHead Film Festival Finds Widespread POPularity

By: Carter Ottele

On Saturday night, Grinnell College students flocked to the Harris Center to watch a collection of short films. Shoving, yelling, and pulling hair, the students plowed into the Cinema in a drunken stupor. Their voices crescendoed as the projector turned on, a faint glow spread across the screen, and the title of Grinnell’s newest favorite tradition emerged:


For decades, the Titular Head Film Festival (often abbreviated to TitHead) had dominated Grinnell’s cinema scene with its promises of biting social commentary, unrestrained creative expression, and tits. But this year, students seemed far more excited to attend the ZitHead festival instead.

“I was getting tired of TitHead,” said Juan Won ’23. “At first it seemed kinda cool. Like, I’m seeing my classmates naked! But then I went and it was like, oh—I’m seeing my classmates naked.”

Under-Enrollment Forces Departments to Combine

By: Javy Rommel-Ruiz

John Chrystal Center—John-Calvin Winthrop, High Deacon of the Registrar and Admissions, announced today that a clerical error has erased almost all enrollment records. The error is speculated to be the result of integer overflow caused by record enrollment. Nevertheless, all non-graduating students will need to reapply for admission; as such, next semester is expected to show critical under-enrollment.

Abandoned to their fate by the cruel gods, also known as the Administration, faculty have found themselves needing to combine departments or else risk job cuts. Aware that some departments had more of an advantage of being more easily compatible than others *chough* Anthropology *chough*, faculty unanimously agreed to decide the new departments by drawing them from a hat. The results of draw include:

Dear B&S: Strange Feelings In DHall

By David Gales

Dear Binston Swongo, 

As of late, I can’t tell if I’m having strange feelings for a cheery checker or if she’s having strange feelings for me. I’m confused and aroused and I don’t know what to do. Please help me! 


Scared but Curious 

Dear Scared but Curious, 

Ah, I remember the first time I fell in love, too. It was 1878, and I was at the Woodstock festival. I had just been through a bad breakup the week before, the Reagan presidency was hard on us all, so I texted my buddy Rich to meet me at the bowling alley. He told me his horse was sick, so he’d have to walk or catch a carriage. I told him to Uber. 

 I should mention I was on acid for most of this. It was my first year. Alice was crazy. 

Magnet Curfew Enacted

By Conrad Dahm

HSSC– Due to a lack of rooms on campus, Grinnell College is instituting a new policy to help remedy the problem. Yesterday, the College unveiled a “state of the art” magnet curfew system on campus.   

“The system itself is simple. All students will be provided with magnetized Grinnell-branded attire. At midnight, magnets installed on the ceilings of academic and residential buildings will turn on, and students will be stuck to the ceiling until 7 AM the next morning. This will help not only with the room problem but will also help students get more sleep,” said Joe Rosenfield Noyce, the President of the Grinnell College Magnet Committee. 

“I actually kind of like the idea. You know, under the old system my single was turned into a quad, and there was barely room to step between the desks and bunks. Moving our beds to the ceiling opens up a lot more space, and it might actually be fun,” said one student. 

However, opinions about the magnetization program are far from unanimous. While in the HSSC this morning, a B&S reporter found the following letter written by a student and have, in the interest of journalistic integrity and because it’s less work than writing our own stuff, decided to publish it: 

“As I write this letter, it is currently 6:55AM. Last night, I was studying late in the HSSC at 12AM. I was about to leave, but it was too late, the magnets turned on and I was pulled to the Atrium ceiling, three floors up. I know I should have gone to bed, but I had an essay due! I’ve tried to yell for help, I’ve yelled for hours, but no one heard me. I guess they’d all gone to bed…

Editorial: A Glimpse Of The Terrible Future

By Anna Lipari 

Author’s note: As I was lying awake last night, head full of uneasy dreams about the uncertain future awaiting me after graduation, there came a knock at my door. I opened it to find not an overzealous union representative or an FM worker there to peer cryptically at my fire alarm, as I had expected. No, it was my own eyes that stared back at me from the doorway, and the face that bore them was my own too – there was my nose, my familiar pattern of freckles, that old scar on my lip from when my younger brother hurled a can of soup at my face as an infant. But the person in the doorway was far older than me, their skin creased and lined by many decades of unkind fate. Their hair was messily cropped, their clothes so patched the original cloth could barely be seen, and the deep circles under their eyes bespoke a lifetime of horrors. They thrust a bundle of papers into my hand, and I recognized yellowing newspaper. “Don’t let this happen,” they pleaded, and a chill ran down my spine as I recognized what my own voice might sound like fifty years from now, hoarse from dust or from screaming. 

I have reprinted the parts of the article that are legible here, in hopes of avoiding the grim future it describes. The article reads thus:

“…a selected research team braved the Grinnell Exclusion Zone in order to collect genetic samples from the populations of feral cats and turkey vultures that have taken up residence in the abandoned town. Nearby farmers and bone-pickers have even reported wolf sightings in the area, though the size of the population has been impossible to estimate until this point, due to the danger that even a few minutes’ exposure to the Grinnell area represents. Genetic information about these animals could help answer questions about their vulnerability to radiation, as well as assist scientists in preparing humans to deal with future fallout exposure.

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