How to Avoid the Tablers in Novack: A Guide

By Lucy Tantum | 4/29/16 9:08am

It’s a Tuesday night and you’re strolling to Novack, thinking only about which flavor of Odwalla you should buy. As you descend the stairs from first floor Berry you see them: students standing next to tables, carrying clipboards and handing out bumper stickers. They ask you to sign their petition. Buy their bake-sale food. Join their club.The students pull you in with their aggressively cheerful smiles and pointed eye contact. Before you know it, you’ve signed up for three random listservs and bought a baker’s dozen of homemade cupcakes. You wake up the next morning feeling the Bern and wondering what happened to all of your DA$H.

So goes the experience of encountering tablers— students fundraising or promoting a cause by sitting at a table and assertively engaging everyone in conversation. How can you avoid the tablers and get your Novack coffee in (relative) peace? We’ve compiled a few suggestions.

1. Avoid eye contact

2. Look like you’re too busy

3. Make an excuse for why you can’t participate in their club/event/election

4. Look unapproachable

5. Avoid them entirely

6. Engage with them

After months of travel, you’ll return to Dartmouth worldlier and wiser. You’ll go to Novack, where they’ll inevitably yell at you when you order too slowly, and you’ll finally buy that Odwalla. It will taste great. It was all worth it.

Lucy Tantum