Academic Teapot? I Too Scream When Under a Lot of Pressure

OLIN LIBRARY—Panic ensued among patrons of Libe Cafe as what started off as a wimpy high-pitched whine grew into a deafening whistle, its shrill sound piercing ears and shattering phone screens. Searching for a means of sequestering the shrieking, workers rushed to unplug their appliances and knock over anything that might produce such an intense trill.

The workers’ efforts were rewarded with respite as the ringing in their ears receded and the discomforting sound softened. Believing danger to have abated, students stood pondering the source of the disturbance. Realization dawned on the crowd as it recognized the sound starting up again from a dark corner of the cafe, not from a malfunctioning machine but from a frenzied freshman. 

Trent Marco ‘27 sat alone at a table, fists clenched and pounding his temples. As a screaming Marco grappled with the harsh reality of his eighteen credit schedule and five consulting club applications, his face flushed fiery red and steam began streaming from his ears and nose.

A self-proclaimed “academic weapon,” Marco spent the first two months of the semester getting settled with the belief that when the going got tough, he’d turn on the gas and conquer any academic adversity. Instead, as prelim season began, Marco developed the habit of generating more steam than a hydrogen combustion engine and expelling it in moments of high stress.  

“I can’t help it,” Marco explained, “I tried keeping a lid on it, but if I plug my nose, then the ear steam doubles. And if I plug those too… God, that was terrible…”

Cafe customers had little empathy for the frustrated freshman, going as far as to boo him until he took his whining outside. Marco was observed fleeing across the Arts Quad soon after, the steam from his head condensing into a cloud and raining down on just him.

Now it’s War! Fish with Legs Thrown on Stage During Evolution Lecture

KENNEDY HALL—BIOEE 1780 lecture was cut short yesterday afternoon after a series of peculiar events transpired in the lecture hall. Students streamed out in near silence, stunned at what they had witnessed: a large anthropomorphized sea bass, throbbing and thrashing on stage after being thrown by Felix Ichthyus ‘26 from the third row.

When asked to comment, he argued, “Those bullshit lecturers are trying to tell me that us Homo sapiens are related to the same creatures that made fucking Dicentrarchus labrax? Look at those things, with their caudal fins, scaly skin, and operculum! Look at us! Our keratinous hair, internal lungs, and automatic thermoregulation! Now tell me that we are related!”

Apparently, the student had tried to make this distinction clear to his professors on previous occasions, but according to his fellow peers, the professor would just speak more loudly into the microphone, effectively drowning out the cries of disapproval.

“Umm, yes. The sound system was quite effective in making him shut the hell up,” noted Prof. Elaine McDougall. “I thought he would stop eventually. However, he snapped back, storming into the classroom dripping wet and hucking a bleeding sea bass onto the stage after he had pinned baby doll legs and a wig to it.”

Other students were just as surprised. “How the hell did he get a saltwater fish here so quickly?” cried junior Frances MacGuyver ‘25. “The nearest ocean is over 200 miles away!” 

Due to the incident, academic bodies are searching for ways to more clearly and intuitively explain descent with modification without having to deal with those damned phylogenetic trees. Their new goal: make explaining evolution a less fishy endeavor for students.

Guy Who Microwaved His Hamster in The Third Grade Grateful to Keep Doing What He Loves in Animal Science Program

Animal Science Junior Clayton Keane ’25 considers himself lucky. He gets to wake up every day and do his favorite thing: unsupervised barn time.

As the first to arrive & last to leave, Keane has taken advantage of every opportunity the program affords. He relishes the hands-on aspect of the curriculum, estimating that he has donated upwards of twenty chickens to science with his bare fists. 

From a young age, Keane has been honing his sixth sense for the most vulnerable and nonverbal among us. His family reminisced on countless childhood trips to Petsmart.  “I remember when he first got Peanut, his first hamster. And then Chewy, his second hamster. And Nibbles, his third…” recalled his mother fondly.  

“He’s a lovely boy. He arranged for all sixteen of them to go to a little farm upstate. And now he’s finally joined them there,” she added. 

Keane has spent the last few years getting to know the animals on the farm, cuddling, feeding, and handpicking the sacrificial lambs. 

Keane’s zest for the discipline has not gone unnoticed by peers and professors. “I’m not entirely sure he understands that it’s the science of animals, not science on animals. Regardless, it shows that he’s willing to innovate with the curriculum” stated Sheep Management Professor Walter Atkins, observing that Keane “thinks outside the box” of the veterinary ethics code. 

Three years into his studies, Keane is thinking bigger: He’s excited to graduate to equine studies. “I’m not trying to beat a dead horse here, but I would like to get my hands on one.”

Consulting Club Reject Forced To Learn Insider Trading On The Job

NEW YORK, NEW YORK—After four years of undergrad and 27 total rejections from CCC, CCG, CYC, and various other combinations of three letters on a sweater vest, recent AEM graduate Danny Michaelson ‘23 feared that he’d never be able to make it in the business world. However, after a little bit of on-the-job training, Michaelson has found that he can spend other people’s money, use a bluetooth earpiece, and commit fraud as well as anybody.

“It turns out insider trading is, like, super easy!” explained Michaelson. “At first I thought I’d be totally out of my depth, but it turns out that it’s exactly like taking an online prelim. You just go to your friend who already took the test, and ask him for the answers. So for business, you basically just call up your friend, and ask him if his company is gonna go kablooey or not, and then you make your decision before everyone else gets to know. No Sweat!” continued Michaelson, demonstrating his complete mastery over the world of finance.

Since starting his new position, Michaelson has sent 600+ LinkedIn connection requests and consumed 200+ cups of coffee, effectively completing a full three years worth of consulting club experience in just under three months. While some might have been burned out by the sheer level of deals and business that Michaelson is conducting, his drive has remained unaffected.

“I kinda thought that insider trading was suuuper illegal, but the guys let me know that it’s one of those fake illegal things, like jaywalking and cocaine,” said Michaelson. “A lot of my coworkers were in business clubs during college, but my boss says he’s never seen anyone make trades like me. He’s always asking me to sign lots of documents and record myself talking about all the stocks I’m buying.”

“I’m pretty sure he’s putting together a highlight reel for the Executives. I can’t wait to get promoted!”

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Damp Info Sci Major Remains Moist, No Longer Able to Blame on Heat Wave

DUFFIELD HALL—Information Science major Greg Daniels ‘24 was spotted Tuesday evening emerging from a cool, dark place bereft of direct sunlight. Unlucky bystanders scampered out of the splash zone as he made his way across Ho Plaza in a manner that can only be described as “spongy.” 

Roommate Mike Meyers ‘25 noted that Daniels had been particularly saturated as of late, referencing last week’s record-high temperatures. “It’s weird though, we have A/C, but he was still somehow glistening?” mused Meyers.

“I don’t know how he manages to maintain a perpetual drip, especially since I’ve never actually heard the shower running when he’s home,” he continued, baffled by the enigmatic seepage. 

Nearby students parted like the Red Sea as Daniels descended into Okenshields, many citing a loss of appetite. Onlookers recalled watching him beeline for the double cheeseburger pizza, shoes squelching with a marshy reverb. 

In a particularly harrowing encounter, Daniels exchanged a pre-moistened homework assignment for a moment of eye contact from Kelsey Schneider ’25, before tripping over his shoelaces and adding he “meant to do that.” He retreated unceremoniously, leaving a puddle to remember him by. 

Freshman Switches Major, Career Path, Name, Religion, and Sexuality After Inspiring Coffee Chat

SAGE ATRIUM—When Walter Pinker ‘27 emerged from his consulting club coffee chat with Isabella Mendez ‘26, he didn’t want to be a Classics major anymore. In fact, he also did not want to be straight, Catholic, white, or Walter, adopting the temporary moniker “WaPi” (wha-pee, something “more exotic”) while he positions himself to be the ultimate corporate diversity admit.

“I booked the Calendly appointment as a joke, you know? So I could live out the rest of my humanities major in peace, comforted by the tragedy of Cornellian souls doomed to perpetual corporate servitude. But then I found out about these diversity programs that fly students across the country to eat steak and make little consulting friends,” commented WaPi. “The Odyssey isn’t flying me across the country. And I like filet mignon.”

When probed further about what moved him to transform nearly his entire identity, WaPi cited Mendez’s success in already securing three separate post-grad job offers as a first semester sophomore, with only slightly delayed start dates of 2031, 2036, and 2048.

“She’s already so successful,” remarked WaPi. “Forget the cinematic dark academia main character I’m-better-than-you lifestyle of reading Virgil under a tree. It’s time to become an indispensable DEI statistic.”

WaPi is now on a crusade to tick all the corporate diversity boxes, hoping to secure himself a slot in one of the industry’s most coveted firms so he can lord it over everyone else. Isabella Mendez declined to comment, sharing only that WaPi made her sign an NDA etched in quill onto the back of The Iliad.

“Now, Where’s My Hug?” Asks Former Classmate You Do Not Recognize

ARTS QUAD – Classes have officially begun, which means getting settled into routines, staving off mounting exhaustion, and spotting familiar faces around campus. For Elizabeth Valenciano ‘26, however, the start of classes would also bring about an uncomfortable surprise.

Valenciano and several of her friends were spotted leaving Goldwin Smith Hall when they were approached at an alarming speed by a fellow with a profoundly determined expression. “He ran toward us at full speed–I thought he was running late or maybe just a freshman or something–but then he started shouting ‘LIZ! LIZZYBETH! LIZZY!’” reported Ava Zhao ‘26.

“I was confused,” Valenciano later stated. “All my friends just call me Elizabeth.” As the boy advanced with a speed and intensity akin to a hyena descending upon a pack of gazelles, it became increasingly clear that the intended target of his eager gaze was, in fact, Valenciano.

According to Zhao, upon reaching them, the student exclaimed “Hey, where’s my hug, Liz! I haven’t seen you since last fall! Where’s my hug? Man, I really miss seeing you every week in FWS. Where’s my hug? That Feminism for All Genders was a real doozy, wasn’t it? Anyway, where’s my hug?” Zhao and the rest of Valenciano’s friends then watched on somberly as their dear friend was swallowed by the suffocating hug of the unidentified man. 

At press time, Valenciano shared that she remains puzzled by the interaction and the identity of the student, never having taken an FWS before.

Mousey Sociology Professor Strangely Good at Identifying Cheeses, Solving Mazes

URIS HALL–Students enrolled in SOC 3105: Interspecies Dialogue were left in awe as their instructor, Professor Michael Piccolino, demonstrated his amazing ability to navigate mazes utilizing only his peculiar sense of smell. 

Piccolino’s jaw-dropping display was designed to illustrate the importance of learning from mistakes during the problem-solving process. The demonstration called for student volunteers to place various bits of cheese at random points throughout a 50”x50” maze constructed of popsicle sticks. Students were tasked with generating a randomized list of the various cheeses and reading them aloud, at which point Professor Piccolino would enter the maze and deftly locate the cheeses in the given order. 

“The presentation didn’t really provide any practical advice. He just kept saying stuff like ‘follow your nose’ and ‘listen to your whiskers.’” recounted Françoise LaBelle ‘26. “But he let us eat the leftover cheese afterward, and that was nice. The smoked gouda was my favorite.” 

Standing at a diminutive 5 ⅞ inches tall, Piccolino makes up for his small size with a big personality. Students rave about his open mind and willingness to tackle any sociological quandary head-on. 

“He actually solved the trolley problem,” said Anya van Beek ‘25. “Turns out if you roll a wheel of semi-hard cheese, like provolone, between the rails, it’ll stop the trolley in its tracks. A soft cheese like ricotta would just get smooshed and a hard cheese like cheddar might cause the trolley to derail.”

Despite his reputation on campus, Professor Piccolino has recently received some backlash from the academic community following a recent controversy that has called his qualifications into question. A flea by the name of Phil Tix has come forward and alleged that Piccolino conducted his research unethically by pressuring Tix into sitting atop his head and puppeteering his limbs in order to write his final thesis for him.

The Twelve Labors of Hercules? I Am Taking Twelve Credits and It Is Hard

It is often said that success at Cornell is nothing short of a heroic feat. It takes brave, strong, and savvy students—truly exceptional students, not the ones who merely think they have those qualities and join ROTC—to navigate the university’s harrowing challenges. This semester, I have confronted the school’s mythical academic rigor head-on as I struggle to vanquish the monstrous 12-credit schedule that stands in my way.

At the onset of the semester, I was confident and exuberant, certain that any coursework thrown my way would be no match for my studious prowess. In turn, I approached school with the audacious bravado of a cocksure young man. But my hubris was nearly my downfall. 

Soon, I was barraged by terrifying beasts sprung from the depths of Hades’ realm. The endless problem set, impervious to any attempt to weaken its strength. The coding assignment that sprouted two new bugs whenever I patched one. The group project where, no matter what I did, there was always more shit to deal with. On and on they went, penance to pay for the unspeakable crime of completely forgetting about course selection.

Each task initially seemed impossible. But, in time, I have come to slay them all. I was forced to strangle the problem set with my bare hands (write it out by hand). I struck at the heart of the code (by finding a solution on StackOverflow). I cleared the shit by redirecting the one motivated student in the project group to do everything. The gods tested me, but I have emerged victorious—so far, anyway.

I am no demigod, and I have no desire to become a demistudent either (by dropping classes and going under the credit limit). My trials have been long and harrowing, the tasks normally reserved for only the noblest of prep school kids. Many times have I mulled slipping away, sacrificing my future for some temporary peace. But the draw of academic immortality—in the form of a piece of paper with some fancy typing on it—is too much to resist. I must continue to fight, to prove my mettle.

Many challenges still await. I dread the final projects, those descents into hell which only the stupid attempt and the lucky survive. But then why should I not prosper? There is little doubt about my intelligence (or lack thereof), and my luck thus far is similarly indisputable. So I shall proceed, stumbling blindly into hopeless situations and somehow emerging unscathed. If that isn’t the heroic Cornell way, I don’t know what is.