Dear Lone Pining

By Andrés Smith | 4/12/16 9:37am

Life at Dartmouth can be hard, what with the harsh winters, D plan and limited social scene working against you. “Dear Lone Pining,” Dartbeat’s premier student advice column, is here to help! Anonymously submit your questionshere and our lifestyle expert, Lone Pining, will help tackle your problems. Here’s what Lone Pining had to say this week:

Dear Lone Pining: I sit next to a mouth-breather in my 9L lecture class. I’ve tried to switch my seat, but he always seems to find me. It sounds like he’s snoring while awake, and what’s worse is that his breath smells awful. What should I do? -WatDatMoufDo

Oof, that’s rough. The only thing worse than having to be in class at that godforsaken hour is having this vile ramora of a person latch on to you like a barnacle, but even smellier. (I’m feeling kind of nautical today. Could be all the Sperrys.)

Maybe it’s spring allergies or maybe he’s just really excited about “Captain America: Civil War.” Either way, mouth breathers are a fact of life that we all just have to deal with, like casual grandparent racism or John Travolta. It seems this particular mouth breather has taken a liking to you, which limits your options. If he is as consistently gross as you claim, then he either does not pick up on subtle social cues or simply does not care. I suggest that you ask him outright for a little space. This will almost definitely hurt his feelings, which is not ideal, but you do have the right to not feel uncomfortable because of this unwanted attention.

If this doesn’t work for you, you can always become an even smellier mouth breather, in the hopes that he will realize he is no longer the alpha and slink away with his tail between his legs. Of course, you run the risk of him falling deeper in love with you and imprinting on you Jacob style. (Yes, I’ve seen “Twilight.” No, I’m not dead inside.)

-Lone Pining

DearLone Pining: I tripped and fell in front of my crush on the steps going into Foco. How do I recover from that?! –’16Stumblin

There’s a payphone on the corner of Wilkins Street in Manchester, NH. Dial “4435” then hang up immediately. Exactly six minutes later, a man in a gray suit with a red tie (make absolutely sure it is a red tie, there will be imposters) will approach you. Very slowly say to him, “Snakes on a plane.” He will then hand you an envelope containing the details of your new identity. You are now a Swedish yak farmer, and you have always been a Swedish yak farmer. Best of luck with your new life!

Actually, though, I think you are blowing this way out of proportion. Not to delegitimize your pain, but one thing that I think everyone at Dartmouth needs to realize is that other people think about you much less than you think they do. It’s not that you aren’t important or don’t matter (that can only be decided by corporate recruiters, of course), but everyone is so caught up in their own lives that one mildly embarrassing interaction likely won’t change the way they think about you. I know this probably doesn’t make you feel any less embarrassed, but take it in stride. Who knows, maybe one day you will tell this story at your wedding! (Or at their wedding after you drunkenly stand up and take the microphone from their grandfather to profess your love. Could go either way, I’m not a fortune teller.)

-Lone Pining

DearLone Pining:I caught my roommate using my toothbrush. How can I ever trust her again after this? -TrustIssues

This is a weird one. Did she not have a toothbrush and had to use yours this one time? Does she secretly use your toothbrush because that’s how she gets off? Does she just want to see the world burn? You will never know.

As gross as her using your toothbrush is, she probably did not recognize it as a breach of trust. Some people just have drastically different ideas of what is and is not socially acceptable. I assume you told her never to use your toothbrush again, so for now I suggest buying a new toothbrush and keeping an eye out. You could also employ the catfish strategy of putting out a decoy toothbrush, and seeing if she uses that one without permission. You know, because you trust her. But just in case.

-Lone Pining

Andrés Smith