By Henry Coen

D-HALL— “Oh, hi there. My name is Draco Malfoy Senpai, but my doggo calls me—Owooow!” Draco Malfoy Senpai 26’ was interrupted by a loud thwack as Professor McPhee slapped their wrist with a wooden ruler. Welcome to Grinnell College’s new language table: the Being Fucking Normal Table. 

“These freaks only respond to force,” Professor McPhee told our reporters when asked about her teaching style. “I may be strict, but I am fair.” A recent transfer from Normal, Illinois, Professor McPhee has been a transformative influence on the budding Department of Being Fucking Normal. “When I came to this school, they told me my office was in ARH inside HSSC right next to the JRC, and that if I had any questions I could ask the JCC ASAP. I knew then I had my work cut out for me.”

Professor McPhee is trying hard to rehabilitate students like Senpai. “The rules of the Being Fucking Normal Table are simple: It’s one slap for calling yourself quirky, two for calling Grinnell the Harvard of the Midwest, and three if you make a land acknowledgment to the dinosaurs.”

Professor McPhee is not just limiting her assistance to domestic students. She has also extended her services to British students, like Oswald Digby Crump Winston Churchill Buckingham III, who told our reporters, “Thanks to Professor McPhee, I haven’t said ‘pip pip cheerio!’ in months!”

“The reason I started the Being Fucking Normal Table,” Professor McPhee said, “was to give my students some real-world experience in the art of being fucking normal. I see mistakes in the D-Hall that just don’t manifest themselves in the classroom.” 

Mistakes like the one Senpai made in Plat Du Jour: “All I did was ask the chef if there were any oat milk substitutes for the mac and cheese, and then in comes Professor McPhee with her ruler.” Other punishable offenses include skipping around the room, PDA in the booths, and stealing from the Halal and GF Stations. 

Dining etiquette is one of many things Professor McPhee monitors. “You wouldn’t believe the outfits these Grinnelians come to D-Hall with: crowns, corsets, full pirate regalia. Don’t even get me started on the animal ears.” It has reached the point that Professor McPhee has started keeping a basket of pants and hoodies with her to give to students so they can dress the part of normal people.

Part of the problem identified by Professor McPhee is the media that Grinnell students consume. For instance, recent studies have shown that watching Stranger Things in high school increases the adult cringe factor by 7000-9000%. “I also think the show Normal People has also confused a lot of Grinnellians,” said McPhee. “Not a single person in that show is normal.” 

Still, despite the challenges, McPhee’s program has been an enormous success. “For the first time in years, my family has been actually able to understand me!” Draco Malfoy Senpai said, when asked about the advantages of the class. Still, will Professor McPhee’s efforts be enough to help Grinnell students finally talk like normal fucking people, or will the language barrier between normies and freaks continue to widen? Either way, the B&S will keep you informed.