Moderately Good Advice with Gardner and Kate
By Gardner Davis And Kate Taylor, The Dartmouth Staff
Published on Friday, February 22, 2013
I made out with this girl from my floor a while back. We got FoCo the next day, but she hasn’t been answering my texts for the past week. I heard that she hooked up with another guy, but I’m not sure. I think I like her, but she doesn’t seem to be into me at all. How can I fix this?
— Freddie Freshman ’16
Gardner: Your question brings to mind a quote by a famous Dartmouth alumnus. Robert Frost, Class of 1896, once said, “In three words, I can sum up everything I’ve learned about life: it’s a bitch.” Wait, nevermind, I think that was the philosopher Nas. Frost said, “It goes on.” Luckily both apply to your question. There are things that no piece of advice in The Dartmouth can fix. At a certain point you need to realize that although it may seem to suck now, life will continue and you will soon move on to another problem that our insight can hopefully help solve. And then you die.
Dear Gardner and Kate,
I always worry that I annoy people when I eat in the library. To what extent is food acceptable in the library?
— Self-conscious Sarah ’15
Gardner: A good rule of thumb is that if you bought it in the library, you can eat it in the library. Your Sun Chips are not as loud as you think they are but there is simply no way that you’re so busy that you need to bring Collis stir-fry to the library. It’s going to smell, prevent you from actually doing work and really annoy the people around you. Hot Pockets are a notable exception to this rule. You should not eat Hot Pockets in the library because there is no place where you should eat a Hot Pocket ever.
Kate: There are tiers of judgment for eating in the library. The first and loudest tier is that of KAF and Novack. As these areas were created for eating and socialization, at these locations and these locations only can one feel free to shake their KAF salad without fear of repercussions. The next tier covers most of the library — the Periodicals, the second through fourth floors of Berry and lower levels. Here, eating is acceptable, but take all possible precautions to minimize noise, such as unwrapping sandwiches prior to entering and avoiding aggressively stabbing croutons. Finally, we have the stacks and the Tower Room. You can eat here if you are prepared to deal with your crippling fear of shush-ing, a true challenge to see if you can stay cool under the judgmental eyes and oppressive stillness of the silent scholar.
I’m thinking about going to the Vagina Monologues next week but am kind of weirded out, should I go?
— Pensieve Pat ’15
Kate: As a Sexpert, a two-time participant in the Vagina Monologues and a Women and Gender Studies-modifier of my major, I think my personal answer to this question is pretty predictable. Despite the gender-neutral nature of your name, I’m assuming you’re a guy as you feel “weirded out” and haven’t set up at least hypothetical Vagina Monologues dates already. I’ll avoid the clichéd reasoning of “sensitive men arouse women” to argue you should attend. However, I will say around 25 percent of women on campus will either be performing or in the audience, so if you need to make faux controversial small-talk, here’s your bait. Even better, V-Week offers a built-in campus-wide hot button issue for poorly researched op-eds in The Dartmouth! Of course, this year the real draw is one thing: Gardner Davis in the audience experiencing extreme levels of awkwardness and discomfort.
Dear Gardner and Kate,
Do you have any class recommendations? I’m thinking about taking four but I’m not sure if it’s a good idea.
— Ambitious Alice ’15
Gardner: I have no gems to share with you, but I will tell you that you would have to be a crazy person to take four classes. Dartmouth offers so many chances to study interesting things that you can get carried away and think that taking four classes is the way to get the most out of your time here. The seemingly obvious logical flaw is that taking a fourth class means cutting out most if not all of your free time and fun. Especially in the spring, you should have fun with people you like without feeling overwhelmed and stressed out all the time. Spring term is a fourth class in and of itself. Don’t be a crazy person. No one wants to hang out with crazy people. I’m taking zero but recommend up to three.
Kate: One spring, I thought I could take four easy classes and still enjoy myself. Two and a half weeks into classes chosen purely for their names, I realized I was wrong. While it was with a heavy heart that I dropped “Sex, Celibacy and the Problem of Purity,” I realized it was for the best. The term ended up being an academic success, and I’ve stuck with my practice of taking three classes based almost entirely on their titles ever since. This spring, I’d recommend looking into “Unveiling the Harem Dancer,” “Gods, Demons and Monkeys” and “Beyond Sex, Drugs and Rock’n Roll: Radical Latinos in the 60s.”
In an attempt to elevate our collective social media presence to a level near that of Gardner’s 12th grade sister, please tweet questions in need of advice @low_sinks and @Kate_H_Taylor.