Sex on Thursday

SEX ON THURSDAY | The Case for Drunk Texting

Ever since my very earliest days of drinking, I have been a drunk texter. Initially, my texts were barely legible strings of letters that even I could not decipher the next day. I would only text one of the four close friends I had in high school, trying to tell them how much I loved them. As my drinking abilities matured, so too did my ability to send texts that were, for the most part, composed of real words. And under the influence of college hookup culture more than anything, I now find myself only texting guys I want to sleep with.

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SONG | What It Means To Be An Asian Woman

When I say I’m an Asian woman, people say they know what that means. They say it means growing up with tiger moms and Silicon Valley dads. It means bowls of rice clutched in the palms of our hands as we pour over SAT prep books. It means Dad sending us to elementary school with a doctor’s coat and stethoscope already in one hand. But to me, being an Asian woman also means warm pineapple bread that Grandma just pulled from the oven.

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The other day, I decided I was going to make some new friends. So I tried to find new friends! I walked into Trillium, grabbed myself a quesadilla and headed upstairs. I scanned the room, found a table with two strangers (read: potential friends) and excitedly walked up to the table. I introduced myself and asked if I could sit.

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LEE | The Fundamental Deficit

Last week, I felt a thrust on my bottom left wisdom tooth. It was initially a slight ache that I simply ignored, only to find that the throbbing and discomfort expanded more and more. When I developed a twinge that was too much to bear, I finally considered visiting Cornell Health, but I quickly remembered that my $2,712 Student Health Plan does not cover dental costs. That’s because this year, I had opted not to spend the extra $278 on Cornell’s dental plan insurance, knowing that last year I hadn’t used a penny of any health plan and had essentially wasted $3,000. The Cornell Student Health Plan, administered by Aetna, is mandatory for all international students due to U.S. immigration and Cornell requirements.


KANKANHALLI | To Netflix: Chill

Veiled by political unrest and other persistent distractions, Netflix has been up to no good. The company recently increased its standard monthly subscription prices from $9.99 to $10.99, which I would have totally missed had it not been for some pointed research. Granted, $1 extra is a reasonable trade for surplus dopamine, so maybe this is justified with some business terminology. Still, it was a bold move, considering 600,000 forward-thinking, likely SolarMovie users closed their accounts following the 2011 Netflix price hike. What’s worse than the increased rates, though, is Netflix’s ascension atop the Internet Ethics soapbox.

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MORADI | One Fish, Two Fish, White-ish, Brown-ish

There’s an old Middle Eastern-American proverb that — roughly translated — goes something like, “I’m actually technically white according to the Census.”

This proverb, with its awkward adverbs and desperate lust for ethos, has dribbled out of my mouth more times than I am proud to admit. I am, after all, the product of two white American frontiers: the sweetly benevolent whiteness of Treasure Valley and the abstruse, nebulous whiteness of the Virginia piedmont. As would most little girls with black frizzy hair and a funny name in towns 92 percent white, I fell to official racial classifications when I had nothing else that could back up my claim to sameness. I’m not white. Sorry, U.S. Census, CommonApp and my loyal following over at the neo-eugenicist website (that once republished one of my columns)!

Guest Room

GUEST ROOM | Finding a Home in a House

The ability to discover a campus community is a unique thing for a freshman, a chance to try something new or develop known passions. In either case, this sense of freedom, to draw on historian Carl Becker’s notable address, The Cornell Tradition, is an extension of “the attitude of Cornell,” something “easier to appreciate than to define.” It is this sense of freedom, enabling discovery and synergy, that allows students to find their place amongst Cornell’s thousands of students and hundreds of thousands of alumni worldwide. With countless extracurricular opportunities at Cornell, students are certain to find groups they “click” with. Likely, it will be more than one such organization. Outside the classroom, students spend many of their waking hours with the friends they make in these settings.

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GROSKAUFMANIS | The Trendiness of Activism

It’s no secret that activism is becoming trendy. In today’s day and age, famous comedians are taking stances on the Affordable Care Act, supermodels are posting their opinions about gun control, and The New York Times just published an in-depth piece on how “wokeness” is the new cool. As a partial consequence of this, many people’s personal and political identities have become inextricably linked. A lot of people today seem to be creating personal “brands” that reflect their penchant for social justice — whether they are celebrities or students. For the most part, I honestly think this is fine.

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BENITEZ | Rejecting Libertarian Intuition

At the end of Ayn Rand’s dystopian novella Anthem, the story’s protagonist, escaping an oppressive society in which everything from technological progress to reproduction is centrally-planned, retreats to distant mountains where he happens upon a series of texts from the early 20th Century. In them, he re-encounters the word “I,” and hence reclaims his agency after having been brainwashed from birth to not use such first-person language. Putting aside whether our ability to perceive of ourselves as distinct, first-person entities can be so fundamentally altered by a change in language, Anthem has stood out as an effective encapsulation of the intuitions fundamental to political libertarianism. Chief among them is advocacy of minimal governance from a belief that society is bettered by unleashed individualism. Indeed, the political libertarian holds a series of admittedly-consistent notions pertaining to all levels of society: in the “micro” by holding steadfast to the tenet that no one can understand the ideal trajectory of your own happiness better than you; and in the “macro” by believing that the interactions between these self-aware individuals can most fairly and justly optimize the productivity and welfare of the population as a whole.

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DANBERG BIGGS | You Can’t Do Politics Scared

The most useless columns I write treat politics like a profile picture. They are snapshots of whatever kind of political aesthetic I would like to have attached to my name. Sometimes, this is a regurgitation of the campus consensus, while at other times it is contrarian purely for its own sake. They are honest, but only in the most superficial sense. That is, they are honestly the beliefs I would like you to think I hold.