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SAMILOW | Decency is on the Ballot

Beginning Tuesday, students will have the chance to cast ballots in elections for the Student Assembly and University Assembly. While these shared governance bodies usually attract little attention, students who value mature, responsible and decent governance should pay close attention to next week’s elections. You have the opportunity to send a powerful message to the S.A. leadership that its bullying, disregard for rules, abuses of power and political grandstanding are unacceptable. For students new to campus or for those who have had the fortune of not paying attention to the S.A., it may be helpful to briefly recap the S.A.’s misdeeds from just the last few years. This account is, admittedly, incomplete as this newspaper only allots me so much space.

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GUEST ROOM | Grief in the Time of COVID-19

One of my favorite memories of Didi dadi is from the summer of my freshman year when I was doing an internship across the street from her apartment. I had gone over during my lunch break to find the dining room table overflowing with plates of fresh mango and lychee, cookies, savory Indian snacks and madeleines. Somewhere in the midst of catching up on my first year of college and her move to Chicago from the suburbs, I guess I mentioned that I liked the madeleines. When I got up to go home, Didi reached above the fridge for the round plastic container full of them and dumped the whole thing in a bag, insisting that I take the cakes as well as a fresh, round watermelon home with me. I convinced her to keep the watermelon, but I was eating madeleines for days.

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LIM | Learning Distance

Past a certain point, nonetheless, this cannot be a normal semester, and I think that that is something to keep finding new ways to exploit.

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BARDMESSER | Performative Activism Isn’t How to Honor RBG’s legacy

It seems like this increasingly apocalyptic year won’t be giving us any breaks anytime soon. The pandemic continues on, as the United States breaches 6 million cases and a semi-recovered Europe braces for another wave, perhaps worse than its first. The inevitable march of climate change is manifesting on the West Coast, bloody skies borrowed from the Old Testament. The ongoing protests motivated by the extrajudicial murders by the police across every state serve as an ever-present reminder of the systemic racism in this country and the futility of fighting it within courts. And now the death of Ruth Bader Ginsburg ’54 is another harbinger, with the inevitability of a third Trump appointee, one conservatives are gleeful to announce will be young, with so many years left to do more damage to the tatters of our civil rights.

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WILK | Breakup With a Small Town

Coming to college made me conscious of the problem of having an introduction prone to misinterpretation. Every “where do you live” since my first introduction to my freshman year roommate has made me wonder if my graceless attempts to illustrate the distinct small town-ness of where I was raised give people an entirely wrong impression. I grew up in an oxymoron. Rural New York is a descriptor so pitted against itself that it almost cancels out, diffusing into a vast Middle of Nowhere that disappears off mental maps when you’re tasked with telling someone where you’re from and where that is. My jumbled words between ‘um’s’ and ‘have you heard of’s’ could never capture the character of my piece of upstate in an icebreaker-friendly time crunch, so what follows is a hunch that feels like an itch that strangers walk away thinking of charming shots of green and hay from Hallmark movies instead of the slightly less magical reality I knew.

Sex on Thursday

SEX ON THURSDAY | Cliterotica for a Lonely Quarantine

Whether you’re quarantining with a new partner, just went through an awful breakup — but are still stuck living together —  or are stuck in the isolation blues, it’s likely that whatever your sex life was pre-pandemic, it’s pretty different now. Maybe, like me, your months in quarantine have been replete with fluctuation – beginning with a time of passionate, consuming sex with a beloved, followed by periods of agonizing sexual and emotional separation, and then frosty post-breakup months spent wondering if you’d forgotten how to masturbate. Maybe, if you really are like me, your body is just waking up as if from a long sleep, the pain subsiding enough that you can finally ask: How can I get off without risking giving COVID to my housemates?! 

After hours of scrolling through tinder with zero intention of meeting anyone and of scouring the internet for porn I actually enjoy, I found myself turning to a long familiar form of pleasure: language. So whether you’re looking to spice up your quarantine sex life or you’re just trying to keep your twin bed a little warmer as we head into autumn, look no further than these cliterary classics:

from “When the Beloved Asks, ‘What Would You Do If You Woke Up and I Was a Shark?’” by Natalie Diaz 

“Be-loved, is loved, what you cannot know is I am overboard for this 

metamorphosis, ready to be raptured to that mouth, reduced to a swell 

of wet clothes, as you roll back your eyes and drag me into the fathoms.”

Here is a poem for if love comes to you as an act of submission, of offering yourself completely to a dream or to a lover. Here is a poem for if you ache for acts or for imagery that you fear to speak aloud.

Sex on Thursday

SEX ON THURSDAY | Tips for Finding Your P Spot

Working up to find your p spot takes time. Ensuring you’re in a comfortable position with yourself or your partner is vital. But once you learn to love your hole, sex and pleasure will never be the same.