Morehead Repurposes Feigned Humility Intended for Time at Harvard

morehead disdain

CHAPEL HILL, NC—In an effort to relate to non-scholarship students, Morehead-Cain Scholar Claire Frist has employed many of the tactics for feigning humility she had intended to use while an undergraduate at Harvard University since arriving at the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill in August.

“I’m not different from any other Carolina student, I just worked hard and got lucky,” Frist said, using a phrase she had often imagined using to explain her admission to Harvard.

“I didn’t expect to be a Morehead, it just happened,” she added, “I expected to go to Harvard.”

Frist spent a good deal of her junior and senior years at Walt Whitman High School in Bethesda, Maryland, practicing the awkward and self-effacing way in which she would tell people that she went to Harvard, “but only if it came up.”

“I don’t want it to seem like I’m bragging. I know how much help I’ve gotten along the way, so as soon as it looked like going to Harvard was a real possibility, I started thinking about how to convey my humility. I think those skills are just as applicable to receiving an honor like the Morehead-Cain Scholarship,” she said.

Frist said that, despite preparation, it has been more challenging than expected.

“When you go to Harvard, you only have to be humble over the breaks. As a Morehead, you have to be humble every time you leave the Foundation,” Frist said. “Even when you are trying to get away from that constant pressure, and just be with other Moreheads, you have to come up with some elaborate excuse for what you are doing. It can be exhausting.”

Frist, who considered Amherst and Williams Colleges in addition to Harvard, Princeton and Yale, often tells friends that she came to the University of North Carolina because she liked the feel of a big college town.

UNC was the only public university to which she applied.

Frist noted that while being a Morehead-Cain scholar had the potential to alienate new acquaintances who did not have prestigious scholarships, much like attending Harvard could alienate students from other universities, the specifics were often different.

“I thought I would tell people I went to school in Boston. Now I tell them I go to school in North Carolina,” she said.

When asked what she would say if someone asked if she went to Duke, Frist replied, “Oh, in that case I would tell them that I’m a Morehead, because, well, I just don’t want them to get the wrong idea.”

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Letters to The Minor

letters to the minor

Each week we receive an array of letters, here are a few.

Dear The Minor,

My grandfather was a miner and I hated him. Therefore, I cannot support any mine-based activities. Except land mines, for obvious reasons.

Sincerely,

Thom Tillis

Raleigh, NC

 

Dear The Minor,

I was wondering if you had any advice for getting scuff marks out of linoleum floors. I have two boys, five and ten, and they’re always running through the kitchen, leaving unsightly marks on my foor. I’ve tried almost everything and nothing seems to work. There has to be a better way! If you know a way to get these marks out without serious scrubbing, my floors, and my hands, will thank you.

From,

Ann Smith

Tallahassee, FL

 

Dear The Minor,

As Interim Director of the Oral Biology Ph.D. Program at UNC, I am writing to express my extreme displeasure at your Twitter stunt involving our program’s account earlier this month.

As if I have to remind you, you tagged the UNC Oral Biology Twitter handle in a series of profane and aggressive tweets, all couched as if you, The Minor, were a binge drinking young woman raging at a romantic rival, which you cast as our program.

Our Twitter account is, essentially, a professional tool that we operate on behalf of our students—it is a means for us to present their research and accomplishments to a network of people in the healthcare and biomedical research professions, people whose judgment matters most when it comes to our students getting jobs and post-doctoral fellowships. They did not want to see your little “jokes.”

I cannot help but think that the only reason you even followed our program’s account in the first place had something to do with your juvenile amusement at the word “oral.”

You certainly have some growing up to do.

Regards,

Ceib Phillips, M.P.H., Ph.D.

Interim Director, Oral Biology Program

 

Dear The Minor,

Pee Pee Poo Poo. Poopy Pee Pants. Pee Pee Pee Poop. Pee Party Poopy Pants.

Sincerely,

Sir Poopity Pants Fart

Poopyville, VA

Carrboro Residents Hold Waffle House Debate on Gender of God

waffle house god

CHAPEL HILL, NC–Last Friday, a heated, lengthy debate took place at the Franklin Street Waffle House, when a group of Carrboro residents argued over the gender of God.

The debate began around 1:30 a.m., when Greg Kleinman and his housemates entered the Waffle House after finishing a case of PBRs and several packs of American Spirit cigarettes. After an order of coffee, hash browns and waffles, Kleinman’s roommate Tyler Wells posed what would become the central question of the evening.

“What if God wasn’t actually a man?” he asked, taking a long sip of his coffee and watching for the reaction of his friends.

“Well that’s obviously a heteronormative assumption steeped in a sickening tradition of patriarchy and male dominance,” said Kleinman, calling the waitress over for more coffee with a shout. “My professor wrote a really interesting piece about it a few weeks ago.”

“Oh shit, think I read that. What is that one with the Nietzsche quote near the end?” asked Willis Brodnich, friend and philosophy minor.

“So I only read, like, the first few pages,” responded Kleinman. “His prose was a little too pedantic for my tastes.”

While Waffle House employee Cassidy Hall prepared the group’s waffles, the debate grew louder, intoxication fueling a rapidly growing spectacle.

“It just makes sense, you know?” said Brodnich, as the Eagles’ “Hotel California” played thinly from the restaurant’s worn speakers. “Perceiving God as an asexual being capable of limitless self-reproduction gives such a refreshing way of viewing the world.”

“It just puts you at peace,” he added as Hall hastily scrubbed yet another set of dirty pans, her fingers cracked and hard from hours of soaking in dish soap. She checked the clock, and thought about how her daughter had to be awake for school in only a few hours.

“I mean these are the important questions,” said Kleinman, impatiently scanning the kitchen for the fourth time.

“About time,” said Wells, grinning as the tired waitress placed several plates of waffles down on their table. “You have any thoughts on this?”

“Most days feels like God’s not here at all,” she said, leaning over to refill Kleinman’s coffee.

“It’s just hypothetical,” said Kleinman, rolling his eyes and pulling the mug away from Hall. “Jesus, we were just trying to have a conversation.”

Spanish 101 Student Likes to Skate, Paint and Eat French Fries

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CHAPEL HILL, NC—According to classmates in Señora Martín’s Spanish 101 class, freshman history major Henry (Jorge) Lavaran’s favorite activities are skating, painting and eating French fries, all words so far assigned on his weekly vocabulary lists.

Lavaran, who is an athlete on UNC’s Varsity Fencing team and a member of the Carolina Microfinance Initiative, has partnered with his classmates over the past semester to practice conversational skills, discussing things that “enhanced both [their] language skills and [their] understandings of each other.”

“I had no idea Henry enjoyed skating on streets so much,” said classmate Peter (Paco) Dixon. “I guess that’s what’s so great about intimate classes like this one. You really get to know people.”

“If he’s ever down, I know Henry just needs a big bowl of French Fries and an easel. I can be there for him now,” he added.

Laravan agreed.

“I found out Margarít really doesn’t like doing her homework,” said Lavaran, speaking of freshman economics major Margaret Burris, who founded a nonprofit in high school that works to reduce food waste. “She also doesn’t like getting up early or sweeping the floor.”

“It’s kind of crazy how much we have in common,” he added.

Since the beginning of the semester, Lavaran has also associated closely with the male peers in his class who expressed their interests in playing basketball and eating hamburgers.

“I’m planning on asking the gang out to Al’s Burgers some time,” said Lavaran. “I know Santiago would be down. He likes hamburgers, wants to eat burgers and hates not eating hamburgers. The man just loves burgers.”

Surprisingly, despite their vastly different senses of humor, all of Lavaran’s friends in the class agree that they’ve found common ground in their second language.

“There’s this word in Spanish, pusé, that’s pronounced poos-ay,” biology major and 2012 Origami Crane-making AA Champion Greg (Gabriel) Dwyer explained. “Whenever Señora Martín says it, Jorge and I just look at each other and smile. He gets me, you know?”

Soon, Lavaran will have to decide whether to continue his academic exploration of the Spanish language or move on to another pursuit. When asked by his Spanish-speaking professor if he has any interest in the Spanish Literature and Culture major at UNC, Lavaran nodded.

“Puedo ir al baño,” he said, smiling. “Puedo ir al baño.”

Y’all Should Be Ashamed of Yourselves

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by P.J. Hairston | The Minor

I just read the Wainstein report, and I have to say I‘m disappointed. I expected better from a university that prides itself on academic excellence as much as athletic prowess. This report brought home to me that each and every one of you is complicit in an unjust system. I never felt this way about the Texas Legends.

Jan Boxill, Deborah Crowder, and Julius Nyang’oro: you should be ashamed of yourselves. I’m sure you all have your reasons for doing what you did. Jan, I can imagine the sleepless nights when you rehearsed for yourself the complex rationalizations that would lead an ethics professor to such moral profligacy. Deborah, I can see the conflicted pride in your campaign to subvert the elitist rhetoric of academic rigor, in fighting to free your beloved Carolina from its ivory tower. Julius, I sympathize with your ethical conundrum; sending underprivileged athletes back to their communities sans education, sans opportunity, and sans hope for a better life is not a morally superior course of action. No, I do not find guilt in keeping the doors of Carolina open to such students. I only find it reprehensible that you lacked the courage of your convictions.

I expect a higher standard of conduct from you.

Julius and Deborah, your lax oversight and willful dissimulation aided fraternity members as often as athletic scholarship students. These were not students for whom you had to fear. They had the resources not just to compete, but to excel at Carolina. Your classes became bastions of privilege even as you imagined them to be the last line of defense against a system of rigid social stratification. If student athletes did not have the resources they need to remain at Carolina, why didn’t you fight for those resources? Where were your voices to challenge injustice? I can’t imagine such cowardice from anyone here in Charlotte.

Jan, how did you justify your actions? If you imagined these students would be better off at Carolina than not, what were your reasons? If you hoped to help these students to professional careers in their sport, I can see your logic for passing along a linebacker or a point guard on the men’s basketball team. But how would taking a paper class help a lacrosse player or a women’s basketball player? From virtually all sides, these athletes, these would-be students, are told their worth is athletic rather than intellectual. Do they need to hear it from you too? These students cannot hope to make much of a living in their sports; don’t they need their time here to learn other skills? If such a balance is impossible, why wouldn’t you, a professor of sports ethics, say something? It feels like I could find more ethical decision-making in my pinky finger than in those who supposedly teach it.

To the coaches, especially to Roy, I say you should be ashamed of yourselves. You got off clean, but you are the real villains here. Whether by intent or through spinelessness, you have forwarded a corrupt and abusive system. Like true politicians, like true executives, like true criminals, you have skillfully maintained plausible deniability. No emails, no tests–nothing exists to directly implicate you. With the exception of Butch Davis, none of you got to where you are by being stupid. You knew you had a business to run. You protected yourselves so well that I cannot imagine you gave much thought to the conditions which produce your athletes and sustain your programs. Y’all are too cynical for that. I’m glad I made the decisions that allow me to never have to interact with you again.

To the students, you should be ashamed of yourselves too. Our campus is still segregated culturally, racially, and economically. It is only this distance between us that allows the average fan to forget about the struggles that athletes face off the court while they watch them on it. It is only this distance which allows you to offer adulation to an athlete’s face while mocking his stupidity behind his back. Maybe the distance between one group and the other is too great. Maybe the difference is irreconcilable. Maybe the gap is unbridgeable. Maybe no hyphen can bring together student and athlete. If so, we must be honest about it. If not, we must fight for a more equitable system, one that puts the wellbeing of the student, of every student, before all else.

This is about two decades of moral bankruptcy, not two days of outrage. I have to put down my blunt just to think about it. This is not the Carolina way. UNC, I am ashamed.

The Weigh-In: Wainstein Report

The Wainstein Report on irregular classes was released today at 1:00 pm. It outlined serious infractions in the African American Studies department including fake paper classes, purposeful grade manipulation for student-athletes, and current administrators pushing athletes toward these classes. 

daves-college-footb_462833c

“Call Ron and burn it all. Burn it down to the fucking ground. Don’t leave anything for them to find.”

Every Other University with a Large Athletic Department

Jan Boxill at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

“Umm, well they should’ve gotten a good grade in my Sports Ethics class, because I believe in being completely unethical in sports.”

Jan Boxill, [soon to be former] Professor of Philosophy

NCAA_primaryc

“They’re focusing on UNC, right? Not the system we’ve created that causes problems like this? We are just going to keep talking about how it is individual action and not an unfair system that preys on largely low-income minority students? Perfect.”

NCAA

Roy

“I told [former football coach] Butch [Davis] to always use a burner phone. Motherfucker didn’t listen. Stupid ass. Gotta play the dumb country boy.”

Roy Williams, Men’s Basketball Coach

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“Well I can’t read, so what’s going on?”

Marvin Austin, former Football Player

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“♫ What’s going on? ♫”

Marvin Gaye, singer

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“Fucking nerds.”

Larry Fedora, Head Football Coach

Witch’s Curse Will Not Let Sophomore Remove High School Lacrosse Hoodie

witch lacrosse

CHAPEL HILL, NC–Cackling in grotesque delight, local witch Bloostery Graymalkin looked on from the occult realm of shadows as sophomore Michael Boswell yet again donned the Marshall High School Bulldogs Lacrosse hoodie to which he is bound through her evil curse.

Boswell incurred the witch’s fateful hex when, in a stormy and pernicious hour during his freshman orientation, he wandered onto the heath and came across Grakmalkin in midst of her infernal rites.

As the weird sister muttered darkly over her skin-bound grimoire and added to her cauldron “Adder’s fork, and blind-worm’s sting/Lizard’s leg, and owlet’s wing/A charm which trouble will bring,” she spied the wayward youth and turned her necromancy upon him.

“In cotton-poly artifact/of thy hurly-burly with laced wand done/be into manhood heedless clad,” the witch said, finishing her incantation.

She then wiped memory of the macabre encounter from Boswell’s mind and turned him back on his way, alighting into the night on her broomstick.

Boswell last played an actual game of lacrosse in the spring of 2013, when he had an assist in an 8-11 second-round loss to Western Guilford High School in the North Carolina High School Athletic Association 3A Men’s Lacrosse State Championship.

Even so, he has duly persisted in wearing his high school lacrosse sweatshirt–which has Marshall head coach Doug Watson’s motto “Tough-Tactical-Together” on the back–believing, under the influence of the witch’s darkest fairy familiars, that the garment conveys athleticism and likably signifies his hometown.

Speaking to reporters from her trysting place, wearing a pointed hat and draped in a ghoulish black shawl, Graymakin explained that Boswell’s curse falls well within the ill bodements and filthy trappings of her witchcraft.

“Making livestock ill, devouring lost children, inscribing runes, copulating with Hecate, untying winds and letting them fly against churches, and, of course, laying curses upon unsuspecting young wanderers–these are among my wicked occupations,” said the woman of strange and wild apparel, who, with withered fingers, skinny lips, and beard, resembled a creature of the other world. “What an excellent trap is a loose-fitting, dark blue, visibly pilled lacrosse hoodie that was new when LMFAO’s ‘Sexy and I Know It’ was popular.”

“Eee hee hee hee!” she added.

Sources close to the secret, black, and midnight hag say that the curse will likely last “stretching unto the crack of doom” or at least until Boswell gets a steady girlfriend who insists that he dress, if not like an adult, at least not literally as if he is still in high school.

It is thought that, aside from his dark impulsion to wear the sweatshirt, Boswell is otherwise allowed by the witch to “pay his breath to time and mortal custom,” although it is not clear whether keeping his hair in the same shaggy style as when he played high school lacrosse and spinning his keys on a long Warrior lanyard are residual effects of untimely witchcraft.

The preternatural woman’s curse is expected to evolve, impelling Boswell to wear a UNC sweatshirt to his office job for years after he graduates.