Core Decorum


Dear Decorum,

I have a few concerns about my living environment in one of the esteemed female dorms. In my “home,” there is a clique that obsesses over health and dieting. Call me bitter or biased, but it looks like they have taken their lifestyle choices to something of an extreme. Not only do they talk of nothing but their workout routines, their diet supplements and the new low-fat cookbooks they use, but they also “eat healthy.” All the time. Especially in the study room, aka my study spot. The constant crunchings and chewings are impossible to ignore, and they never stop.

This is my home just as much as it is theirs, and it’s not practical for me to move dorms with less than three weeks of school left.

I’d like to know when people stopped realizing that not everyone is as interested as they are in their own lives. No one enjoys listening to the chomping sounds of celery, either.

In other words, for how long is a person supposed to grit his teeth before he speaks up about this sort of thing? Being subtle doesn’t and never will work, and I would hate to get the RA involved. Am I being dramatic?

-Irritated Resident


Dear Resident,

While you can’t control other people’s topics of conversation, however self-centered and boring they may be, you might be able to influence your dorm-mates by offering your own topics of conversation. Be the change you want to see in your daily life.

As the for the loud chewing, if it annoys you that much, say something. Simply remark, “Your crunching on carrots, celery and granola is very loud and irritating. Could you snack in the break room instead of at your desk?” Those words may seem harsh, but surely they can’t be worse than the sound of crunching carrot sticks. If it truly bothers you, be bold and speak up.

If you live in Theresa, sweeten your request with a batch of organic, fat-free brownies. Whatever works.

Also, you may want to invest in a pair of headphones.

With less than month left of school, you better be ready for more noise.


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