Twirl the pearl, tug the slug

Health and Happiness

The first thing that comes to mind when I think of masturbation is the classic “American Pie”-esque movie scene in which a high-schooler furiously strokes away, wide-eyed in front of a computer screen, beside a trash can filled to the brim with sticky, crinkled tissues, only to be disturbed mid-ejaculation
Read More…

Banking goodwill

Broke in Berkeley

“BART’s going on strike.” I got the news first from Twitter. “Well, we’re screwed,” my roommate said. His boyfriend piped up reassuringly. “We can make it work. We need to make a plan.” My tribe of roommates sat down last week to figure out a strategy. Our apartment is in
Read More…

The hidden backbone

Cultural Crossroads

I remember studying in the main lounge of my residence hall last fall when a custodian came in to vacuum, apologizing for the noise in the process. This gesture surprised me because 1) I had been worried I was an inconvenience to him throughout the ordeal, 2) he was only
Read More…

The failure to communicate

Broke in Berkeley

My best friend’s parents both went to Cal. Some of her earliest memories are of the Campanile and the Cal Band performances, and she was very excited to come visit me when I started here. When we were preparing to graduate from high school, her parents really wanted her to
Read More…

An inner voyage

Health and Happiness

When my older sister — now a proud Cal alumna — was persuading me to apply and eventually send in my SIR to UC Berkeley two years ago, she constantly gave me the same rundown of all the valuable things I’d learn over the course of my four years. She
Read More…

Will work for school

Broke in Berkeley

Come into the office and demonstrate your ability to transcribe. After the test, we’ll ask you some questions.” It sounded simple enough, but I had never done it before. I chewed my pencil and desperately tried to keep up with the recording. The interviewers walked back in, and I braced
Read More…

The cost of transit

Broke in Berkeley

“So how long does it take you to get to school?” I get asked this more often than what my major is or what my plans are after graduation. When I tell people I live an hour away, they usually guess that I drive and park somewhere near campus. I
Read More…

No longer an invisible minority

Cultural Crossroads

The first time I learned to identify myself as “white” on official government papers, I thought it was rather funny. To 12- year-old me, the term “white” did not extend beyond skin color, and the thought of me being identified in this way was so blatantly wrong that I didn’t
Read More…

Is the truth inconvenient?

Health and Happiness

Don’t get me wrong — I think polar bears are adorable. But seeing them trapped on a tiny piece of Arctic ice doesn’t really faze me. What am I supposed to do about it? Stop driving my car? Join Greenpeace? These cuddly polar bears and the Arctic ice sheets have
Read More…

DIY electronics repair

Broke in Berkeley

“We spend all of our time together, and you don’t know anything about me.” “That’s not true! I know all about you! We do everything together; you’re like a part of me.” “Oh, really? If something went wrong, you wouldn’t know how to take care of me.” “I never hit
Read More…