Illustration by Maddi Masterson

Classmate receives Oscar for pretending not to notice you

*The Backdoor is a work of fiction and humor

By Madeleine Fellows

Every year, the Academy Awards celebrate actors for their convincing and often heart-wrenching performances. To win an Oscar is to achieve an incredible creative feat and to become a part of a legacy of outstanding artists. Recently, Lewis & Clark student Tiffany Poole ’19,  was honored with the award for Best Actress for her performance in “Pretending Not to Notice You in Passing.”

Critics have lauded Poole’s performance as “a tour de force!” and “a masterpiece!” She was certified fresh on Rotten Tomatoes. Ken at the Dovecote calls her “the next Meryl Streep.” You might have given a group presentation with her or borrowed her notes, but you definitely recognized her at Sizzle Pie that one time when she looked away instantly and laughed way too loudly at something her friend was saying.

We at The Backdoor got the exclusive. We sat down with the people who know her best. Or thought they did.

Poole’s bio lab partner, Lisa Sanders ’20, recalls seeing the starlet in Howard Hall between classes.

“We made eye contact,” Sanders said, with tears welling up in her eyes. “I just knew it was her. And she walked right past me without so much as a nod. I thought to myself, ‘She’s done it again! A genius!’ Sorry, I get emotional.”

“She takes method acting to a whole new level,” a source close to Poole said. “I mean, I’m her professor and her advisor. And yet, whenever we see each other in Maggie’s, she glances at me with a blank stare like I’m a piece of furniture. Yet it’s all chit chat and ‘how’s your son?’ during office hours. Her performance in ‘Pretending Not To Notice You In Passing’ is so realistic. I’m terrified of her. And I’m a grown man.”

While her performance has generated substantial praise, not everyone is such a huge fan of the award-winning actress. The Backdoor sat down with Dominic Barnes ’21 to find out more.

“A lot of LC students could have won for the same role,” Barnes said “I personally was snubbed. I mean, one time I was in the quiet section for four hours with this guy Tyler before I finally nodded at him on the way back from the bathroom. We were in an a cappella group together.”

In her speech, Poole thanked her noise-cancelling headphones and the idea that burning bridges is somehow a form of self-care. “First I just did it to pretend I didn’t notice guys I’d hooked up with,” Poole said in her speech. “But then it became a way of life. I’m a walking performance piece now. I can’t stop. Someone please help me. Oh God, please. Make it stop.”

Other nominees in the Best Actress category include stars from the films: “Woman Who Mispronounces Word and Keeps Talking,” “Girl Who Effortlessly Steps Onto Bus After Running for Two Blocks to Catch It,” and “Woman Who Tells Homeless Person She Doesn’t Have Any Money.”

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