MINT stanford university
style & culture
Photographed by Iman Floyd-Carroll
LETTER FROM THE EDITORS dear reader, This fall, MINT celebrates our fourth year since our 2016 re-launch — and we could not be prouder. Each issue, MINT is continually reborn through the personal, political, and aesthetic imaginations of our team and contributors. Through that speculative process, we have manifested the unflinching courage to innovate the conversations and worlds we are engaged in. Embedded within Silicon Valley, Stanford students are continually inundated with concepts of ‘innovation’. At MINT, we hold that true innovation is the willingness to let one’s imagination “win” — to battle reality filters unrelentingly, and rise above our apprehensions in pursuit of our desires. Therefore, this issue we pushed our contributors to explore the nuances of the intense translational nature between the personal, public, and radical imaginations by exploring the idea of ‘trendlessness.’ We asked contributors to explore their individual desires unguided by the interests of others, to be steered by a clear individuality and a commitment to excellent craftsmanship and construction, and to take inspiration from those who occupy a category of their own. Our cover reimagines the intimacies of the Black male’s historical and aesthetic narratives within an American media context. Aiming to dissolve and reimagine the antiquated representations of Black men as harmful bodies and invulnerable persons, our cover portrays the genuine intimacy between David Showunmi, a student and Varsity heavyweight wrestler, and his emotional support companion, Nugget. In similar likeness, this issue envisions ‘the individual’ and the common yet elusive paradoxes of being an individual amongst the masses. Our editorials, “Out of Context”, “Depression is Trending”, and “American Dream” speak to the mindful reification of self amidst popular pressures. More critically, “Blood on My Nikes” and “Mannequin” problematize the harm in institutions dictating popular culture, often to the detriment of the individual, both in body and in spirit. More playfully, “Slime” and “DIY Clothing” conceive of alternative forms of presentation, reasserting the desire for expression through undisguised absurdity rather than absent-minded conformity. In the spirit of radical imagination, it is with heartfelt remembrance and love that we dedicate this issue to Hector Garcia-Molina, who sadly passed away on November 26th, 2019 on the eve of his 66th birthday after his fight with cancer. Garcia-Molina was a dedicated and gifted Computer Science professor who pioneered modern database technologies and, among many other accolades, was a mentor to the founders of Google and Instagram, and the humble students of MINT. Garcia-Molina was a passionate photographer, a subject he also taught, and a founding mentor to our publication; we hosted our first ever cover shoot in his living room studio in 2016. The MINT community extends Garcia-Molina our deepest thanks. We also extend huge thanks to everyone who was courageous enough to imagine within the pages of this issue. We hope you enjoy exploring the following.
Iman Floyd-Carroll & Petar Hristov MINT Editors-in-Chief
iman FLOYD-CARROLL petar HRISTOV
web content director udani SATARASINGHE
social media directors
brenden KOO jueun NAM
design directors izzy AMPIL kelsey WANG
writing directors andrew CHA angel SMITH
photography director ryan WIMSATT
modeling director alexa DAVY
marketing director nazjaa HUGHSON
web director kiara BOBOFF
disney RATTANAKONGKHAM jessica YEUNG
sponsorships director caroline GRAHAM libby MUIR
savannah ALTER sarah CHUNG helen HE victoria HILL eunice JUNG katrina LIOU udani SATARASINGHE christina SHEN kelsey WANG
financial officers sahit DENDEKURI shawn FILER
Cover photo and table of contents by Ryan Wimsatt Art direction & styling by Iman Floyd-Carroll, Annie Ng, and Ryan Wimsatt Clothing courtesy of Bloomingdaleâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s
IN THIS ISSUE 8 laundry room 14 back to 1999 18 american dreams 28 mirrors 36 diy clothing 42 blood on my nikes 46 crybaby 52 out of context 62 mannequin 72 trendless heartbreak 74 slime 80 editorial outtakes
LAUNDRY LAUNDRY LAUNDRY LAUNDRY LAUNDRY LAUNDRY LAUNDRY LAUNDRY LAUNDRY LAUNDRY LAUNDRY LAUNDRY LAUNDRY LAUNDRY LAUNDRY LAUNDRY LAUNDRY
Photographed by Paulo Victor Makalinao Modeled by Darren Redic, Sreya Halder, and Timi Adeniyi Styled by Stephanie Casteneda Perez
ROOM ROOM ROOM
have have have have have have have have have have have have have have have have have have have
you you you you you you you you you you you you you you you you you you you
seen seen seen seen seen seen seen seen seen seen seen seen seen seen seen seen seen seen seen
my my my my my my my my my my my my my my my my my my my
red red red red red red red red red red red red red red red red red red red
sock? sock? sock? sock? sock? sock? sock? sock? sock? sock? sock? sock? sock? sock? sock? sock? sock? sock? sock?
WHERE? WHERE? WHERE?
SOMETHING SOMETHING SOMETHING SOMETHING SOMETHING SOMETHING SOMETHING SOMETHING SOMETHING SOMETHING SOMETHING SOMETHING SOMETHING SOMETHING SOMETHING SOMETHING SOMETHING SOMETHING SOMETHING SOMETHING SOMETHING SOMETHING SOMETHING SOMETHING SOMETHING SOMETHING
IS IS IS IS IS IS IS IS IS IS IS IS IS IS IS IS IS IS IS IS IS IS IS IS IS IS
MISSING MISSING MISSING MISSING MISSING MISSING MISSING MISSING MISSING MISSING MISSING MISSING MISSING MISSING MISSING MISSING MISSING MISSING MISSING MISSING MISSING MISSING MISSING MISSING MISSING MISSING
HAVE HAVE HAVE HAVE HAVE HAVE HAVE HAVE HAVE HAVE HAVE HAVE HAVE HAVE HAVE HAVE HAVE HAVE HAVE HAVE HAVE HAVE HAVE HAVE HAVE HAVE
YOU YOU YOU YOU YOU YOU YOU YOU YOU YOU YOU YOU YOU YOU YOU YOU YOU YOU YOU YOU YOU YOU YOU YOU YOU YOU
SEEN SEEN SEEN SEEN SEEN SEEN SEEN SEEN SEEN SEEN SEEN SEEN SEEN SEEN SEEN SEEN SEEN SEEN SEEN SEEN SEEN SEEN SEEN SEEN SEEN SEEN
IT IT IT IT IT IT IT IT IT IT IT IT IT IT IT IT IT IT IT IT IT IT IT IT IT IT
back to 1999
Photographed by Ryan Jae Styled and modeled by Alice Artica, Bocar Wade, and Ryan Wimsatt
what is it about the past? itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s as if experiencing it just once is not enough, and thus, we always find ourselves yearning to go back. . .
The oversized flannels, combat boots, and satin tops are just a few of the many styles that have made their comeback: these pieces seem to have a timelessness to them that make each an effortless addition to a modern outfit.
AMERICAN DREAMS AMERICAN DREAMS AMERICAN DREAMS AMERICAN DREAMS AMERICAN DREAM Poems by Darnell Carson and Maya Salameh Photographed by Katie Han Modeled by Bibiche Keza and Ishita Mangla Styled by Arafat Mohammed and Sochima Ezema
BRUISE, KANSAS “d the mUS collegessystem. Other than that, I think that more or less, everythi! As far as foods go, I think of banana splits, hot chocolate fudge, and We grew up in a pretty ‘American’ environment as compared to my US wasmore of a goal than a distant .I realize that for many, the journey has been very different and I’m very grateful that I was in an that had the resources to make education in the USa possibility.” “I was led to believethat America was a land of equal opportunity, where working hard will get you want you want, but that’s not true. America is built on inequality and unfair advantages to achieve success, so the AmericanDream is dead to me” “I wouldn’t believe the American Dream is dead;I’m living my parents’ dream right nowjust being here; I am the American dream” “It’s a marketable ideafor people to believe in social mobility; my parents believed this idea, which is why the immigrated over here for better opportunities. However, to achieve it is quite hard, since wealth is mostly generational a nd it’s hard to be truly self-made. However, I don’t thinkit’s dead, but only relative. I hope to achieve this ambiguous American dream; but all I know now is that I am a manifestation of my parents’ dream.”
TO THE FLAG THAT DOESNâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;T KNOW ME By Darnell Carson
I pledge allegiance To the flag that does not know me Whose red, white, and blue were sown together By hands told they do not belong To the United States of America That have never been united That preach peace and quality But fracture at the sight of a rainbow flag Or gun down innocent people in the street Hands up, face down, Choking on this dream weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re all chasing And to the Republic for which it stands One-legged and limping Stumbling down a road paved of Injustice and quasi-democracy One nation That forgets it was born of many nations Whose backbone is the African slave Whose hands are the Latino field worker Under a God Whose name and power is invoked to pass a law But conveniently forgotten when told to Love everybody Indivisible Because we are already so factioned there is nothing left to divide A committee for everything but never a resolution All promises but no progress Only vinegar that shines like honey With liberty for those who can afford it And justice for those who are above the law For those of us who pray to the right god Or stumble across the right border I pledge allegiance To the flag that does not know me And whose wave feels foreign in the only land I have ever known
SYNESTHESIA J*** with the riptide eyes. C****** with the fringe like visa papers. K**** with the boarding pass mouth. F****** with the hair like if my hair had a curl pattern, or a country. A***** with the smile like Spanish was something full of begonias & no soldiers. teeth coordinated as casualty counts. J**** with the broad shoulders of a boy whose married parents are both lawyers. D**** with the hands I want. wearing his unfair chest & cliff jaw as if he is the regalia. the ritual. the entire ceremony. H***** with the lips like every letter I haven’t written. I still don’t know how to be in love in English.
“A GENTLEMAN IS SIMPLY A PATIENT WOLF” America swallowed my parents / spit out skeletons / Waleed became Bill / the Clintons stretched / their skinny vowels / over my father’s father’s father’s name / my mother says she renamed herself after Lana Turner / I say she renamed herself after the first woman / who sounded less like honey / my mother gives me a neutral name / reminds me / homes are always provisional / lonely women give birth to lonely women / I beget my one body through the roof / the sky is just a lonely woman napping / my mother took a scalpel to the M / in her name / gave it to mine / began my sister’s with an N / neat / noble / next / I was an incision baby / when my mother begot me / she lost a section of stomach / a letter / my mother lives to the left of everything she can read / unmarried the magic of her God-gifted name / Lama / Lama Turner / like the radio / switched to the last song / of whatever keeps the windows closed / women who sound like honey / never live long / my next car won’t be able to hold my neck /
THE NIGHTMARE FOR THE NIGHTMARE’S SAKE everything reminds me of something else / I’m a walking euphemism / I’m diseased with memory / a stairwell dark enough to put on an abyss’s clothes / a building in hospice care / a stack of bricks / the cement in Damascus crackles / in school we fry a yolk on the pavement / back home / not home / back home nobody can drive / streets / suggestions / I amend myself down my American street / jump over the cracks / in the village / mint / grows from arteries in the lane / the cement hosts fault lines for us / the cement scratched / cracked / the road to hell / is paved
MIRROR MIRROR Photographed by Sherry Mestan
Styled by Ana Maria Cornejo Silva
Modeled by Jana Kholy & Abi VanderPloeg
CLOTHING Modeled by Colleen Dai and Vibha Puri Styled by Elena Miller Photographed by Katie Han
REDEFINING INTIMATES: The model wears this DIY wire bralette over a simple shirt as a statement piece and finishes it off with a pair of matching wire earrings. Model: Vibha Puri
THE NOT SO MODEST TURTLENECK: This DIY turtleneck constructed with pipe cleaners definitely will not keep you warm, but itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll be a showstopper. Model: Colleen Dai
STAY COLORFUL: The model spices up an otherwise monotone fit with this funky belt. Model: Colleen Dai
Written by Andrew Cha Illustrations by Christina Shen
100 billion dollars. That’s how much sneakers are worth. Almost doubling in net worth since 2016, the retail sneaker industry now occupies one of the most lucrative positions in contemporary style and fashion across the world. With the explosion of “sneaker culture” on both social media and the runway, these constructions of just rubber and canvas have transcended conventional styles of luxury and street, manifesting a culture defined by historical and contemporary elements of sports, hip-hop, and fashion. Understanding the widespread prevalence of a seemingly newfound sneaker consciousness, however, is to draw the line between trend and a cultural history. While Virgil Abloh’s Nikes and red
box logo hoodies boast instant sell out releases and billions of dollars in the resale industry, the foundation of these pieces lies in RUN DMC Adidas and Spike Lee movies. Athlete cosigned basketball shoes, hip hop, and streetwear didn’t suddenly become cool because designers like Ricardo Tischi decided they wanted to work with Nike: the “trend” is rooted in culture. And ever since the 1980s this culture of sneakers has informed the mainstream, but it wasn’t until recently that the saturation of sneaker culture came to dominate the mainstream, manifesting a profound sociopolitical and economic problem.
About 1200 deaths occur every year over coveted sneakers and clothing. 1200 lives, mostly teenagers of color living in rough neighborhoods surrounding major cities like Chicago and New York, taken because the commercialization of limited run clothes and shoes constitutes a cutthroat system of oppression. Companies like Nike and Adidas compete vigorously to win the signing of Kanye or Travis Scott such that they can engage in massive and artful promotions to promote
the newest release, and then purposefully produce small quantities only at certain locations to create a feeding frenzy among buyers. But for teenagers living in unsupported neighborhoods, that Supreme Louis Vuitton bag worth nearly 20,000 dollars translates to rent, food, or school, and theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;re willing to do anything for it.
The problematization of sneaker culture arrives in the corporate exploitation of these dynamics. Nike and Supreme understand both the social and financial capital they hold, as well as the extreme demand that exists specifically among underprivileged communities, yet they continue to feed the violence. Profits made from these limited releases do not even significantly pad their bottom lines, as most of their gain comes from the sale of more basic running shoes and cross-trainers. But it is the excitement of the limited edition releases, the long lines around the block at midnight, and the mobs of customers as stores open that corporate strategists acknowledge as invaluable branding opportunities for the already globally successful companies. While not illegal, these marketing tactics prey on already struggling communities, exploiting the influence of sneaker culture and contributing to the further oppression of colored people, often black bodies, for marginal economic and social capital.
Unsurprisingly, little is known about the victimization of these communities, as corporations suppress testimonies by seeking quiet settlements with victims’ families. However, the ultimate truth often remains that the money involved in the shoe business simply drowns out the voices of the oppressed. All the way back in 1990, Sports Illustrated ran a cover story article titled, “Your Sneakers or Your Life.” It told the story of Michael Eugene Thomas, a fifteen-year-old ninth-grader at Meade Senior High School in Anne Arundel County in Maryland, who was found strangled and barefoot in the forest near his school. The inflictor of this attack was a seventeen-year-old classmate at the same school who stole Michael’s Air Jordans in the process. The shoes didn’t even fit him.
the ultimate truth “ However, often remains that the money involved in the shoe business simply drowns out the voices of the oppressed.
The story of Michael Thomas unfortunately isn’t irregular, but it serves as an example: the same sneakers pictured on that Sports Illustrated cover, Chicago Air Jordan Ones, were re-released by Nike in spring of 2015 as a limited release “vintage” shoe. The Sports Illustrated piece had smeared blood on the hands of Nike executives, but still the shoes sold out in seconds. I would know because I tried to buy them. For the sneaker industry and the brands that control it, corporate social responsibility isn’t just about using recyclable materials or designing Pride collections to support LGBTQ liberation. The
limited release of products with the understanding of dangerously high demand directly saturates and idealizes sneaker culture to exploit the communities from which it originated from. And that’s the problem: sneakers, and the realm of music, film, and identity that define its culture, are inherently political because the exploitation of sneaker culture directly aligns with the exploitation of the underprivileged communities who propelled it into the mainstream.
Photographed by Sarah Ondak Modeled by Taylor Spann & Eunice Jung
Throughout my life, I’ve been called “too sensitive,” “overdramatic,” a “crybaby.” In high school, I tried to seem as tough as possible and bottled up all my emotions. It took great hardship my freshman year to help me realize that feeling emotions isn’t a weakness; acknowledging pain is what makes you stronger. I feel especially proud of this, as vulnerability is not always promoted as an admirable trait.
crybaby crybaby crybaby
crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby crybaby
crybaby crybaby crybaby
Mannequin Photographed by Iman Floyd-Carroll Styled by Eric Galindo Modeled by George Sivulka, Colbey Harlan, Tamilore Awosile, & Chase Gutierrez
annequin aims to critique the ho-
stitutions are always watching us, making sure that they
mogenous culture at Stanford. The
maintain obedience. Eavesdropping with a stern gaze, Big
photoset defines the artificial universe
Brother overhears their plot to escape. In a defiant and
that the institution has created for
colorful act of rebellion, the protagonists break free of the
students to exist in. It blurs the line
institutionâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s grip as their former oppressor lunges after them.
between human and fake. The nerdy, yet preppy, uniform is
Although these two were able to break free, the institution
meant to signify a lack of individuality and makes it difficult
still holds the mannequin, meaning that it still possesses the
for the audience to distinguish the human models from the
power to continue putting them out into the world under the
mannequin. Humans enter Stanford, but the mannequin
graduates. As the protagonists interact with each other, Big Brother lurks in the background. In-
We are surrounded
look at me.
we are human.
E L D
T Written by Siena Fay
Is there anything more mainstream than heartbreak? Practically every pop artist, writer at Cosmopolitan , rom com, telenovela, Shakespeare tragedy, reality TV show, sports documentary and half-baked teenage drama series has something to say about it. Heartbreak fuels the stories we tell ourselves, the music we listen to, even the clothes we wear. With brands like Riot Society and Comme des Garçons, we literally wear broken hearts on our sleeves (and shoes). But so much of our attention is
given to romantic heartbreak. What about the heartaches that don’t involve a mad dash to the airport, the Titanic sinking, or an unrequited declaration of love? What about all the microscopic heartbreaks we face—like being misgendered by a waitress at your favorite restaurant or turning in your final essay right as the clock strikes midnight? Where is the movie about the anticlimactic moment of picking up and setting down your phone when you realize your best friend is a stranger now? While perhaps less striking or cinematic than romantic ruptures, heartbreak in the mundane, in absences, or even memory can be just as devastating. Heartbreak in the Mundane Last weekend, I was horribly sick. Like any self-respecting adult, I went to CVS in my pink slippers to get cold medicine. At the check-out, the cashier asked to see my ID. He stared at the girl with wavy long blond hair and pink lipstick in the California Driver License then back at me. “Is this yours?” he asked incredulously. I nodded. I was used to TSA agents doing double takes trying to reconcile my 15-year-old portrait with my baggy sweatshirt and pink mohawk. “What’s the birthdate then?” he snapped. I was surprised and dehydrated, and it took me over 20 seconds to remember when I was born. He reluctantly gave my ID back and handed me my change. I walked out of the store with a sense of loss. I stared at the girl in the picture, the address below, the HAIR BLN, and SEX F. None of which was true anymore. I realized I could only be identified by someone that has nothing to do with me, continually at the mercy of others’ interpretation. Carrying a stranger with me until she expires in 2024. Heartbreak in Absence Sometimes relationships don’t combust in a chaotic hurling of insults or an apocalyptic fight that requires years of therapy to process. Sometimes things end in the silences. The unanswered calls and
missed birthdays add up. The miles and time zones between you stretch longer until you realize you haven’t talked to your best friend in six months. I’m starting to medically transition and I’m scared shitless. I don’t know how I’m supposed to decide if I want to schedule surgery, freeze my embryos, or forget it all and drown my dysphoria in tacos. At any other time in my life I would have made one phone call and my best friend would have pulled up graphs and timelines and reasoned my life back into order. I miss her calm voice, so rational, breaking things down into a bullet point list. I used to roll my eyes and shake off her well thought out advice, but my god, what I would give for an excel spreadsheet organizing my anxieties into single, digestible cells. Whenever I needed moral support, she was next to me, literally. She would stand next to me on stage whenever I gave speeches or chastised our teachers for not using LGBTQ inclusive curriculum. I never had to attend a meeting, study for a test, tell a joke, cry over a girl, or be vulnerable alone. But when we left for college, we grew up and out of each others’ lives. I hate seeing a postcard version of her life when I used to know her inside out. She didn’t have to tell me about big life events because I was there with her when they happened. Now, I had to find out she’s moving to London from a comment on her last Instagram post. But still, I look for her in everyone that I know. I wait and watch for her mannerisms, her humor, her reliability. Sometimes I wonder if I already had the friendship of a lifetime. Sometimes I
i m agine myself alone at the hospital getting ready for my first testosterone shot, waiting for her to stand next to me. Heartbreak in Memory My grandfather has a subscription to Fox News, a Lazy Boy recliner, a machismo complex, and dementia. Last year, my family visited him at his nursing home on Christmas. He was so surprised and happy to see us his eyes got watery. His masculinity broke down and in a moment of vulnerability said, “I will remember this for a very long time.” He forgot the next day. • I had dinner with a friend a few Mondays ago. She told that when she was six years-old she loved to hear her mother sing. She found comfort in the calm beauty lulling her to sleep. In high school, she called her mom in a moment of stress and her mom offered to sing. She jerked the phone away from her ear when she realized her mom had a terrible voice, shattering the image she once had. • Why do we avoid the small losses in our lives? Why do we let romantic heartbreak take center stage in popular discourse when our lives are composed of so much more? While it’s true mainstream heartaches aren’t entirely homogeneous, you’d be hard pressed to find a pop song about dementia. Is it, instead, better to sit with it? To see our multifaceted pain reflected back at us? Would the theaters be empty and magazine subscriptions canceled? Or would we feel more whole when our lives aren’t centered around romantic love? Would we feel a little less broken?
Photographed by Maya Shetty Modeled by Emilie Kono Styled by Dahlia Suiter and Jabreea Johnson
S L I
editorial outtakes Photographed by Ryan Wimsatt Art direction & styling by Iman Floyd-Carroll, Annie Ng, and Ryan Wimsatt Clothing courtesy of Bloomingdaleâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s
Cover by Ryan Wimsatt Modeled by David Showunmi & “Nugget” Clothing courtesy of Bloomingdale’s