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The Campanile

The Campanile

AITA for judging my classmates’ moral compasses?

Campy reporters take on popular Reddit “Am I The A–hole“ forum, critique scenarios applicable to students
Art by Iris Tang

Writers’ Note: This column was creatively inspired by the Reddit channel “r/AmITheA–hole,” (abbreviated as AITA), a public online forum where users post personal conflicts and ask the internet to assess their behavior on moral grounds and determine if they are in the right or wrong. As 16-year-olds with underdeveloped prefrontal cortexes, we’re more than excited to give our “expert” opinion to “real world” scenarios that have not occurred at Paly.

AITA for taking a handicapped parking spot even if I’m not really disabled?

I (18M) broke my right leg and totaled my car three months ago when I drove into a streetlight doing 15 in a 45. Following the incident, my foot has been in a cast, and without my personal vehicle, I now drive one of my dad’s many Mercedes to school.

I had also obtained a temporary handicap placard, and just like my idol Steve Jobs, I’ve been parking in the handicapped parking spot whenever I see one.

This has helped out tremendously in lots such as Paly, where parking spaces are scarce. Recently, the doctor took my cast off, and I have recovered the full function of my body.

Technically, my placard is still active for another month, and I’ve continued exercising my qualifications to fill up one of those four perpetually empty spots. My friends disagree though, calling it “immoral” (but I think they are just jealous). So should I keep on using my handicap placard, or should I drive into another streetlight to disable myself again?

Holden’s expert opinion: No, you are “Not The A- – hole.” A car as beautiful as a Mercedes is one that should be admired, and one way to do it justice is by positioning it dead center in an exclusive parking spot. Also, parking is a legitimate issue here. By alleviating congestion on El Camino or in the parking lots, you’re making a positive impact on the community.

AITA for logging into my friend’s account and rejecting their university acceptance?

As college apps season came to a close, I (18F) have been waiting to see the results of our early decision applications. When I learned that my friend (18M) got into Holden University (his dream school) and I didn’t, feelings of jealousy absolutely erupted within me. While he was in the bathroom one day, I grabbed his computer and declined the acceptance offer. Last night, he texted me, absolutely furious about my “prank.” And after plenty of emailing with the school, we found out that he was no longer able to enroll there, even though he was able to prove that he did not actually reject the offer. Now our friendship is gone, and so is his chance at going to his dream school. But he’s also been admitted to colleges like Lucas University and Campanile College, and I keep trying to convince him that they are high-quality alternatives that offer similar prospects.

Holden’s expert opinion: Yes, you’re the a- – hole. Holden University is extremely prestigious, and you are ruining lives (and friendships) with your poor decisions. Consider yourself a hindrance to society.

AITA for ending a friendship because he was a top 0.05% listener to Taylor Swift on his Spotify Wrapped?

I (15F) have been giving advice to my less socially-abled friend (15M), and we opened our Spotify wrapped together on Nov. 29. As a Lanatic, I was pleased with my results as a top 5% listener with 9582 minutes listened and that I even received a personalized message from Lana Del Rey. I was screaming when I looked over at my friend who was tearing up. Was his wrapped really that embarrassing? No, he was just shocked to see he was in the top 0.05% of Taylor Swift listeners. Personally, I cannot stand her. If you’re worth $1.1 billion, I would think you could afford a vocal coach. So when I learned that his tears were not from embarrassment, like any sane person would feel, but rather from joy, I was taken aback. I don’t think I could interact on a regular basis with someone who spent over 16 days this year continuously listening to her. My therapist has been telling me to remove the toxicity from my life, so right then and there I swiftly cut him off. Was it justified?

Lucas’s expert opinion: NTA, you were completely justified. I don’t think it’s humanly possible to hold a conversation, nevertheless a friendship, with a Swiftie. Listening to that much Taylor Swift has got to have given you brain damage at some point.

AITA for tricking my white friend into believing that there is an “Asian way” to hold chopsticks?

I (16M) was at a pre-college program over the summer and met a bunch of friends. One particular morning, I ate in the dining hall with two friends: one Asian (16M) and the other white (17M). They were serving dumplings for lunch and provided disposable chopsticks on the side. When we started eating, I noticed that my white friend was properly holding the chopsticks. Amused, I told him that he was not holding the chopsticks the “Asian way.” After a lot of back-and-forth, my Asian friend and I convinced him that he needed to hold the chopsticks with the thumb + index finger and 3rd + 4th finger (as opposed to 2nd + 3rd finger). To my surprise, my white friend spent the rest of the summer camp “re-learning” the new technique. By the end, he was extremely proficient at doing it the wrong way. I found it funny but thought nothing of it. A couple of months after the camp ended, I got a message from my white friend out of the blue. And he was furious. Apparently, on a first date, he took an Asian girl to a Chinese restaurant to show off his chopstick skills. The girl secretly recorded him, and now he is viral on social media, looking like a goofball. He says it’s all my fault.

Lucas’s expert opinion: No, you are NTA. Certain lessons are better learned the hard way, and I’m sure your friend is now more independent and less gullible than ever before. From that perspective, perhaps it was better that he made this mistake earlier on in life. Additionally, working on unique chopstick-wielding techniques increases his finger dexterity[citation needed], which can have positive benefits like sharper locomotive actions and faster typing speeds.

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Lucas Yuan
Lucas Yuan, Managing Editor
Holden Lee
Holden Lee, Lifestyle & Science/Tech Editor
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