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Category: advice

Shifting for the Holidays

By Catherine Terelak

With the holidays fast approaching, many Grinnellians are anxiously anticipating the big return home. If you fall into this camp, don’t fear! Shifting from GR to HR* while you’re still on campus is a fantastic way to practice interacting with relatives you haven’t seen in months. Here are just a few helpful tips, so you can use the power of reality shifting to make this holiday season go as smoothly as possible! 

Suggestions for Future Thanksgivings

By Liv Hage

Thanksgiving brings forth an unusual paradox of emotions. Some feel elated at the prospect of returning to the warmth of home; others dread reuniting with their creepy uncles and homophobic grandmas. At the more depressing end of the scale, we have those poor, unfortunate souls who suffer the worst fate of all: to stay in the liminal space that is Grinnell over Thanksgiving break. Students who stay haunt the empty halls of Noyce and the HSSC like ghosts, searching for a taste of academic validation to bring them back to life. Oh, what a tragic state to be in! But fret not dear reader, our qualified team of deranged students at the B&S have gathered information from this most recent holiday. For those of you in Grinnell next year, we’ve designed a couple of tips to help you survive this putrid holiday.

Mysterious Smoking Pit Outside of JRC Revealed as Gate to Hell; Part of Plan to Renovate D-Hall

By Bohdin Bright

D-Hall—All semester, Grinnellians brave or foolish enough to eat at D-Hall regularly have been confused about the sealed-up pit in front of the JRC. Blocked off by barricades, a faint stench of sulfur wafting up from within, the purpose of the pit had remained a mystery until President Anne Harris made a startling press release earlier this week.

“Ever since the founding of our great school, D-Hall has been committed to bringing our students quality nutrition at a low cost,” Harris stated. “But it turns out that it’s pretty hard to do both of those things at the same time, so we had to make some compromises. That’s why I’m proud to announce that this year, we’re partnering with Hell to upgrade all of our stoves and ovens to use the spirits of the damned as fuel. Heating elements are the most expensive parts of the kitchen, both in fuel and maintenance, so replacing them with the eternally burning souls of the condemned that will provide a steady, even heat for all eternity will both save money and make the job of our cooks much easier.” 

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.

Dear B&S: Can I Hook Up With My Prospie’s Mom?

By Binston Swongo (Edited by Anna Lipari)

Dear Binston Swongo

First of all, I’ve never had any romantic or sexual aspirations towards any of the prospective students I’ve hosted over my three years here. They’re nervous kids, no matter how cool they try to act, and the power dynamic between a prospie and their host makes it totally inappropriate to hook up. It’s never the prospies. It’s their parents.

I met Cheryl yesterday when she and her son came for an admitted students campus tour. She’s tall and gorgeous, with chunky blonde highlights in her hair and a purposeful stride. Her bold confidence drew me to her immediately; though her son hung back, she pinned me to the snow-swept sidewalk with her icy blue eyes and introduced herself with a firm handshake before launching into a barrage of detailed questions. “Do you know how my son can get credit for both AP and IB classes?” she asked, and butterflies rose in my stomach as I stammered out that I wasn’t sure. 

I think she returns my attraction. “You’re a bright young man,” she told me at the conclusion of the tour, after interrogating me about my major, my roommate, my work history, my GPA, and my opinion on the food in the dining hall. Each question laid bare another segment of my soul, but I didn’t mind. I wanted nothing more than to be utterly exposed before her, to throw myself at her feet (clad in sensible new-balance sneakers) and beg for her praise. “I think my son could really learn a lot from you,” Cheryl told me, and every part of my body swelled with joy.

Grinnell Announces New Mad-STEM Majors

By Dale Bell

GRINNELL, IA—Early yesterday, Grinnell Administration announced that they will be introducing several new mad-STEM major departments. Many have lauded this move as a reinvigoration of Grinnell’s sciences, and a recommitment to the pursuit of mad scientific knowledge.

“I think, honestly, that this decision was long overdue,” says Dr. Cregor Straum, a newly hired Professor of mad-Biology. “Mad-STEM instruction in U.S. higher education is generally lacking, so Grinnell’s decision is surely a step in the right direction. All across the U.S. most students have never taken an intro-level bioweapons class, created genetically modified chimeric beasts with a taste for human blood, or even reanimated a corpse.”

According to Administration officials, new majors and departments will include mad-Biology, mad-Chemistry, mad-Physics, Computer Science, mad-Environmental Science, and mad-Psychology. All of the mad-STEM majors will have entirely new curricula, with the exception of mad-Psychology, the curriculum of which will consist of a regular Psychology course from the 1930s. Mad-STEM courses, starting immediately, will be held in the Underrealm’s parallel-Noyce, accessible through the several Nerf-made holes in the walls.

Dear B&S: I Am The Couch Thief

By: David Gales

Dear Binston Swongo, 

I’m the person who stole the couch from the Gates lounge. To be honest, I wasn’t even sure I would be able to do it, and it was on a dare from my girlfriend back home, and I was drunk, and I’ve never stolen anything before, and I feel really bad about it, and it’s taking up a lot of room in my dorm, and everyone is so mad at whoever stole the couch and there are all these YikYaks being posted about it and I have nightmares about the couch and wake up in a cold sweat and I don’t know what to do. Help! 

Signed, 

Concerned 

Dear B&S: My Roommates Refuse To Complain About My Sex Life

By David Gales

Dear Binston Swongo, 

 I have a lovely partner here at Grinnell, and the two of us have a great sex life. We met at the Hardee’s our first year, before it closed down. I can still remember when our eyes first met and I saw their pupils dilate as they ordered a signature Hand-Breaded Chicken Sandwich. From that very moment, I knew that I had to have them. They railed me two hours later.

Since then, I’ve gotten a house off-campus with a few friends, and my bedroom has proven to be much more comfortable than the HSSC classrooms we normally use. But, I’ve run into a bit of a problem–my roommates play really loud music a lot of the time, and I’m starting to worry that they can’t hear me having sex. 

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