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Axelle Marcantetti

Chores as an asset to life

I am looking forward to washing dishes this summer. Actually, I am looking forward to grocery shopping, keeping the living room presentable and even making sure the toilet paper doesn’t run out. Though I joke about being born in the wrong decade (the ’50s may have been better suited for my homemaking aspirations), I think…

Aced it

Flirting, dating, hooking up, Tinder, breakups gone wrong, Valentine’s Day surprises gone right; a significant portion of conversations on this campus (and content in this section of The Daily) revolves around relationships, sexual preferences and hook-up culture. Stanford prides itself on its openness and inclusivity, and judging from the condoms in front of RAs’ doors,…

These units lie

Fall quarter was a typical sophomore mess. Spurred by the conviction that with freshman year behind me, it was now time to get serious, I enrolled in a rock-solid 20 units. And, to say the least, it did not go well. It’s not that I wasn’t prepared to take 20 units — it’s that I…

Lost in conversation

“Granted, one can’t effectively convince someone who is skeptical of the truth of P that it is true by relying on an inference that ultimately comes back to P, but perhaps circular inferences can provide justification despite being dialectically ineffective.” I catch myself nodding in agreement, strategically placed mumblings of “of course” and “mm-hm” giving…

Interdisciplinary cover letter

Dear Hiring Manager, We’re excited to apply for the position of _________. We are undergraduates at Stanford University and aim to complete a prospective Bachelor’s degree in [interdisciplinary major] by June ____. Before you stop reading this, suspicious of our nondescript major, grant us the benefit of the doubt just this once. We know we…

When life gives you lemons

The holidays are over and with them the most prolific gift-giving season of the year. From clothes to shoes to books to plane tickets, everyone has something new to flaunt. But of all the gifts that have been exchanged on campus and off, the best gift I received for the holidays was a lemon. There…

The ultimate oxymoron: A productive break

Dead Week is looming, we just had a week of break and the to-do list that stretches out on my desk is frightening. How is it that, in an entire week, not only have I not done what I hoped to do, but I also haven’t done what I need to do? Aren’t Stanford students…

In conversation: International and domestic students

Stanford campus is rarely more conspicuously international than it is during Thanksgiving break. While many American students spend quality time with their families and their full stomachs, international students more rarely go home. And so last weekend, after semi-successfully attempting an apple pie, I invited whatever friends were still on campus to my nearly deserted…

Abandoned for abroad

It begins innocuously enough, with a friend telling me she plans to travel for Thanksgiving break. That’s great! Then Thanksgiving becomes Thanksgiving and spring break. Then another friend announces she’s studying abroad next quarter, and a third plans to fly off Spring quarter, and so on and so forth until it seems a good portion…

Does age matter?

“How old are you?” is a question I have always found mildly confusing. What is my interlocutor trying to learn about me? Age can mean many things — whether you can vote, drive, drink — but it’s also used as an indicator of where you are in life, what you may or may not have…

Fill in the blanks

“Wow, your room is so neat.” “Thank you!” “When are you going to decorate?” Well… I’m not planning to. I admire people who put thought, time and energy into making their room their own space. Whether they display art, flags, personal photographs, postcards, memorabilia or lights, I am always in awe of how much they…

Doorstop wonder

What requires the most energy for you? P-sets, working out, going to lecture? The answer is different for everyone, but mine has always been people. Talking with others, being around them, navigating small talk and juggling invitations is as draining for me as it is for my computer to have 10 Chrome tabs simultaneously running.…

A conversation with ‘Sophomore Slump’

And you are…? Sophomore Slump? Nice to meet you.   I have heard a lot about you — been warned about your pitfalls, your twists and turns, your downward spiral. You seem to enjoy quite the reputation. For those who may not have heard of you, an introduction: Sophomore Slump, meet the class of 2021.…

So much stuff

There is a plethora of move-in techniques. There is the U-Haul (the better to bring your entire home with you), the packed car “with another one dropping stuff off next week,” the “fit as much as you can in the car and we’ll order the rest online,” the “as much luggage/boxes/bags as we can carry.”…

Single and not looking to mingle

I went to a party recently, and almost everyone I met assumed that I was either already dating, had my sights on a particular person, or was looking for someone. It was always an interesting exchange to navigate with someone I had just met in a dark, stuffy room where we had to yell and…

Mosquitoes are evil

It seems everyone is focused on caterpillars at the moment. Yes, they do hang from trees and find their way into all sorts of places (found one inside a classroom the other day), but I would like to draw your attention to a far more evil sign that spring quarter is here. Mosquitoes. Would it…

The big, bad duck

Duck syndrome. You’ve heard of it, you’ve lamented its effects, you’ve at times been part of the problem and at others part of a solution. At first you may have thought it was just an issue related to academics. After all, isn’t academic pressure the only downside of an otherwise vibrant, sunny, exciting campus life?…

Dance your worries away

“Let’s go, I’m teaching you how to waltz.” What? As a child I played a few years of violin, then some piano, then did some singing. I was never very good at any one and eventually, I decided that I love music more than music loves me. College was an opportunity to have a different…

Saying ‘thank you’

Thanking people is a lost art. Or rather, we’re thanking people so much these days – “Thank you for your time,” “Thank you for sharing,” “Thank you for your consideration,” “thx”– that we’re never taking the time to thank anyone. Let me clarify what I mean. Thanking has become generic, almost only an indicator of…

To bike or not to bike

Oh the joys of riding a bike…! You can sleep through your alarm and get to class in four minutes, bask in the illusion of exercise and become the Stanford brochure student. But with bumps, roundabouts, cars, tourists and a myriad of other bikers at every turn, this mode of transportation can also become nerve-wracking.…

Advice from elementary schoolers

Sure, it’s another day full of sun with friends to see, people to meet and fountains to hop. But it’s also another day of p-sets, papers, thinking about summer internships (or worrying that you’re not thinking about them enough) and regretting those wasted hours of napping way back when you knew what a nine-hour night…
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