Dear Ephelia

Ephelia Ephelia

My next door neighbor just got a part in the Cap & Bells musical and will not stop singing. How do I find peace in my living space? 

To the musical theatre kids on campus: There’s a time and a place, and the common room at 11 p.m. on a Wednesday happens to not be one of them. Lay down the law — I recommend a singing curfew or time limit — and default to the “it’s not you, it’s me” refrain to avoid bruising your songbird neighbor’s ego. If talking isn’t up your alley, find a speaker and blast music obnoxiously in retaliation. As the hundreds of ECON 110 students can attest, tit-for-tat is a great strategy for long-term cooperation. 

For those of you who are non-confrontational, try posting cryptic notes on doors or in common spaces outlining your demands. Magazine and newsletter clippings are a cute way to ensure your notes will never be traced back to you.

Help! What’s the procedure for encountering your sneaky link in public?

It’s good form to at least acknowledge those who have seen you naked. Take the crossing-Route-2 approach and look and wave briefly, a respectful recognition of each other’s existence. Maybe even stop for a quick, “Hey. What’s up?” chat if the sneakiness of the link permits. Bottom line, be respectful. 

Do you really need shower shoes?

Yes. The fact that you are asking that makes me think some evil, brain-invading fungus has already snuck into your open foot wounds, and it’s too late. 

It’s worth noting that those who do not shower with shoes are currently able to do so with little risk because the majority of people do. Were we to normalize showering sans shoes, this whole system would collapse, and athlete’s foot would spread like wildfire.  

My radio show isn’t funny. Any tips? 

Care less, within public radio guidelines of course — which is far easier said than done. Humor is about intelligence and how well you can read a room, but at its core, it’s about being comfortable enough in your own voice to take risks and yet still be sincere. Surround yourself with funny people and consume funny media (memes, television, movies). Draw inspiration from these sources as you grow into your own comical persona. In this purple echo chamber of politeness, it’s hard to be bold, so I commend you for trying. 

Is dinner at the dining hall a date?

The best way to find the answer to your query is to ask the person. Worst case scenario, they will say no. If communication is too daunting at this time, consider going on dates with people you feel comfortable speaking to or refer to the chart below:


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