Dear Tentacle Thief,

Look, it’s a whole wide world out there. And when you’re being constricted to a moving package of sardines, it looks all the bleaker. I know how you feel, Tentacle Thief—I really do.

I know Monterey is beautiful. I mean, my mom went there once and she talked about how beautiful it was just as much as she bitches about that Karen next door who’s better a brewing kombucha. Maybe that’s just my family, though.

I see that you wrote me in private, but I think it’s salient to mention that your octopus-grabbing tendencies are manifested from your fifteenth sexual awakening in a row last night after your fourteenth viewing of The Shape of Water. I must inquire about the first, though—what about an X-Men movie made you think that your feelings for Hugh Jackman (that hunk!) were so dangerous they’d get a hunting license to shoot baby geese and start rolling their own cigarettes?

I think, Tentacle Thief, that you should go get that octopus, even despite your paralyzing phobia of coach buses and their claustrophobic bathrooms and the TVs that never work—only whisper static and sweet nothing into your ears. Step on that bus, brave those kids in the back playing the penis game, maybe take a Dayquil or eight to help you conk out. The Flipside recommends morphine after the changes to alcohol policy because we always have your health in mind—like a shittier version of Doctors Without Borders—and because we stand behind valid alternatives. No matter what they are, we need alternatives!

Dear Tentacle Thief—yes, you in the dining hall, fork in mouth, blank-faced and dunderheaded, chewing on over-cooked chicken like cud—if you’re out there, then chase that octopus, goddammit!

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