This might be published in Bald Spot but it is not satire; I repeat: THIS IS NOT SATIRE. These are real stats we’re talking here, so buckle up and read this peer-reviewed report (reviewed by my peers, Jack Brown and Nicole Collins).
Abstract: The “Carleton Crushes” Facebook page has been a humble but beloved campus presence since its beginnings in 2015, allowing Carls to anonymously confess their unrequited pining for their favorite peer (aside: see the page’s description for a really good pine pun). This term, the page has experienced a dramatic sixfold increase in total submissions and, even more shockingly, an alarming 610% increase in the rate of unwholesome content.
Introduction: I was inspired to conduct this research after noticing a mysterious increase in the page’s unwholesome submissions, an observation which coincided with a sudden desire to procrastinate homework.
Methods: I looked at the page, which conveniently numbers their submissions to make them easy to tally (thanks guys!). I compared the term so far to the same period last fall term, cuz you gotta control for like, I dunno, the weather? I then had the dubious task of classifying each submission as unwholesome or not. Now, I want to be transparent about my methods here. “Unwholesome” means the type of stuff that the Bald Spot editors always try to publish and the editors-in-chief always shoot down. Which is inconvenient, since **I’m** the editor-in-chief. But okay basically, this stuff fell into three categories: explicit references to hooking up, descriptions of decidedly unwholesome reactions upon seeing the person in question, and submissions dedicated solely to describing someone’s posterior. But I’m not gonna lie, there were some edge cases, mostly due to the fact that some of these submissions were… weird. For example, how to judge the relative unwholesomeness of referring to someone as a “sexy armadillo” versus describing your desire to build a computer model of them? This was further complicated by the concerning fact that posts fitting squarely in the “unwholesome” category included such dubious figures as the goats and Lyman (!!).
Results: If you checked out Carleton Crushes during the first few weeks of Fall Term last year, you would have been exposed to 55 posts, only TWO of which were unwholesome. In stark contrast, this term has seen a whopping 313 posts, including no fewer than 81, I repeat, EIGHTY-ONE unwholesome submissions (*clutches pearls*).
Discussion: What could possibly be causing this alarming effect? Well, I’ve got a few ideas:
- Students are starved for, uhhh, human connection in these unprecedented times.
- The increases correspond with Carleton Crushes setting up an Instagram page this term. Perhaps Instagram users are more lustful than Facebook users.
- We forgot to socialize the first-years into the status quo of Carleton Crushes as a predominantly wholesome institution. Oops!
- A submission early this term called for more crushes to be submitted, alluding to the fact that the St. Olaf Flirts page was more active than Carleton Crushes. In this scenario, the crushes are all fake and are driven by pure inter-school rivalry.
- The increase is due purely to chance. Now, I feel like this is where I’m supposed to put in a P-test, but look guys I’m a physics major and we don’t do that stuff, we do ~real~ uncertainty calculations, using, like, derivatives I think? Anyway, I feel like rejecting something today, so I’m gonna go ahead and reject the null hypothesis.
Conclusions and Further Work: The tragic data speak for themselves (*conspicuously uses data as a plural*). A once largely-wholesome page is now riddled with cringeworthy hookup puns and references to the peach scene in Call Me By Your Name. Also, my homework still isn’t done. On that topic, I really don’t want all this hard scientific labor to go to waste, so I’ll be submitting this as my next physics lab report.
P.S. If The Carletonian is your campus crush, please do let us know, but for the love of Schiller keep things wholesome when you’re describing how happy you are to see our attractively designed papers in Sayles. The current author is otherwise engaged and will be accepting platonic submissions only.