The blog of The Harvard Crimson

The T Ride of Doom

Why is Geoff so unlucky when it comes to transportation?
We're carefully trying not to make a slip-and-slide out of the slushy staircase.
Every snow storm in Cambridge brings with it a host of goodies including cancelled classes, warm cocoa, and transportation nightmares. MBTA passengers, especially those who ride the T’s Red Line, are no strangers to delays and bus substitutes. So why did I think today would be any different? Today, I was trapped on the Red Line for a half-hour long trip from Kendall Square to Harvard Square (that's two stops, for those of you who are counting). Here’s a minute-by-minute recap of my latest transportation woes:

12:31 p.m.: After finishing up with a meeting in Kendall Square, I arrive back at the Kendall/MIT station for a smooth quick ride back to Harvard. It only took 8 minutes earlier in the morning. What could possibly go wrong?

12:34 p.m.: My train arrives and I board. The conductor makes an announcement that a track issue near Harvard Station will delay the train. No problem, so long as everyone’s safe.

12:41 p.m.: The train still hasn’t left the station. I check Twitter to find the Cambridge Fire Department report a fire around Harvard Station. I didn’t realize the Lowell dining hall had relocated.

12:44 p.m.: We’ve moved a bit but we’re stopped in the tunnel somewhere between Kendall and Central. I start to regret not packing snacks.

12:45 p.m.: The man sitting across the train from me begins making phone calls and complaining that he shouldn’t have left work so early. I make a mental note that any and all future jobs of mine must offer the flexibility to phone it in on snowy Fridays.

12:48 p.m.: We’re moving again. HUDS chicken strips are calling my name.

12:53 p.m.: We’re stopped again, just past Central. I’m reminded of my Shuttle Ride of Doom and inspired to share my latest transportation woes with Flyby's loyal readers.

1:01 p.m.: Finally back to Cambridge. It’s not snowing as much anymore. How long was I trapped underground anyway?

#tbt: HUDS in the Early 1900s

As much as HUDS has stepped up their salad and website game this past year, eating in the dining hall still feels like a chore. Doubly so if you're in Adams, where recently a putrid stench has invaded the dining hall and residents have been forced to use plastic plates. However, there once was a time not too long ago when HUDS was the last word in fine dining.

Take a look at this menu from a Tuesday in 1909. Currently stored at the Harvard University Archives in Pusey Library, this menu (1) is beautiful and (2) should make modern Harvard feel ashamed of itself. The menu was displayed alongside an essay written by Henry David Thoreau when he was a student at the College, to show what the author ate the day he published his essay. But really, we at Flyby think it's there to send a messages to modern-day Dining Services: This could be us, HUDS, but you playin'.

When was the last time you had broiled halibut (a fish, I had to look that up) or broiled lamb chops for breakfast? I had a boiled egg for breakfast today.

Or a cut of (real) veal for lunch and a melba tart for dessert? Adams had chicken fingers at lunch today.

How about roast lamb, fried scallops, and a fig cake for dinner?

All of this makes us wonder: what happened? Harvard tuition costs somewhere around $63,000 per year. Are we really getting our money's worth? Oh, how the mighty have fallen.

How To Be Like a 2016 Presidential Candidate

It’s no secret that this season’s presidential campaign is one of the most entertaining (if not terrifying) yet. Watching the presidential debates makes one thing tremendously obvious: comedy writers will have prime material for the rest of the campaign season, and possibly until the end of time. We’ve all seen Tina Fey’s Sarah Palin and Kate McKinnon’s Hillary Clinton, and maybe even dream of being on SNL (don’t worry, you don’t have to comp any semi-secret Sorrento Square social organization that used to occasionally publish a so-called humor magazine to do so, even if their comp materials may lead you to believe so). If you’re looking for an easier way to emulate the greats of this election season, here are a couple tips:

Bernie Sanders

Aside from the endless tirades against Wall Street and the “big banks,” the name of Bernie Sander’s game is waving your arms around like a madman, and shouting like one too. When in doubt, act like you’re trying to get the attention of your friend from across Mass Ave while they have headphones in (jumping is also encouraged). While you’re shouting about Wall Street (ignore the fact that you sent your resume to Goldman Sachs in a fit of desperation over winter break) throw in the word “establishment” and the phrase “political revolution” a couple of times and you’re all set for a spot-on impression.

Hillary Clinton

Say what you want: she is the queen of shade. Hillary’s mastered a suave, quiet way of telling people to sod off. Look at the snapshots of her in the Benghazi hearings, or stills of her face just before she rips into Republicans or Bernie Sanders, and take tips. Or maybe go in the obvious direction and try out her perfectly-rehearsed chuckle and her internal dialogue about being president. Whatever you do, don’t forget the iconic haircut and pantsuit.

Ted Cruz

Make sure you memorize your bible verses and bring a note card full of jibes at the media wherever you go. Also, it’s probably a good idea to learn how to stare into the deepest recess of someone’s soul. Cruz has proven at every Republican debate that he’s the king of awkward eye contact. And awkward interactions. And, just being generally awkward.

Donald Trump

Let’s face it, if you can’t make a Trump impression funny then the stage is not for you. Whatever angle you end up tackling this from, It’s going to be “huuuuuuge.” I’m not quite sure where the nearest wig store in Cambridge is, but if you’re that pressed to emulate Trump, I’m sure you can find a few hairballs in the corner of your dorm room and some yellow paint from the Freshman Art’s Room. Finally, enroll in the new EXPOS 40: Bold, Brazen and Bullheaded, a Public Speaking Practicum.

Marco Rubio

Boots! Seriously, ditch the “buttas” and combat boots and get yourself a pair of whatever Rubio was wearing on the campaign trail. And while you’re at it, it’s time to put those public speaking courses that you took in high school to the test. Stand in front of the mirror, lace your bootstraps up and recite your most patriotic speech, while nervously chugging water every few minutes. Just be sure not to accidentally flip flop; Fox News will be sure to catch it on tape.

Ben Carson

Honestly, all you need to do to be Ben Carson is just chill out—and if you hit up your stoner blockmate to do so, we aren’t going to judge you. Just sit in the back of your section with a muted smile and never raise your voice above a murmur. Always look very pleased with yourself. If you can spare the cash, maybe also commission an oil portrait of you and Jesus to hang in your dorm room.

At the end of the day, we should all be grateful to have such a cast of characters running for President. Good to know we’ll be in excellent hands for the next four years.

HUPD Crime Log: While You Were Away... 12/21-1/25

You probably spent your winter break at home, binging on Netflix and sleeping past noon while trying to forget the trials and tribulations of the semester. But while you were eating everything in your parents' fridge, our friends at HUPD were back on campus, defending the University's honor.

December 21, 2015
Officer took a walk-in report of a stolen HUID card, an MBTA card, and $20.00 in U.S. currency.
No one can find me now with my new identity.

December 23, 3015
Officers dispatched to a report of an unwanted guest in the restroom area. Officers arrived and report individual gone on arrival.
“My bad, I thought this was the men’s room”

December 24, 2015
Officer dispatched to a report of an individual screaming obscenities and causing a disturbance. Officer arrived and report individual gone on arrival.
Must have been a pretty bad breakup.

December 31, 2015
Officer took a report of property damage to an area of grass.
Harvard property is Harvard property, no matter how small.

January 6, 2016
Officer dispatched to take a report of annoying emails.
“Mom, you’re embarrassing me!”

January 12, 2016
Officers dispatched to a report of a group of teenagers causing a disturbance by climbing on the benches and statues in the area. Officers arrived and report group gone on arrival.
Prospective students wanting to get a head start on their Three Things?

January 20, 2016
Officer dispatched to take a report of a stolen package containing paint valued at $8.99.
Don’t let the haters stop you from making the world your canvas.

January 21, 2016
Officer dispatched to take a report of a stolen package containing protein valued at $37.00.
How am I supposed to get ripped now? #swolepatrol

Fashion Guide: Strange, Unpredictable Weather Edition

As college students, we see a wide range of fashion styles on campus. There’s that kid that you think should probably start a fashion line (and since it’s Harvard, he or she probably already has). And then there’s that other one you’re not entirely certain owns pants that aren’t flannel.

But all of us, from the Paris-bound fashionistas to the ones who clearly just rolled out of bed, have been thrown into utter confusion. ‘Why?’ you may ask. Three words: This. Freaking. Weather. Although it’s only February, here in Cambridge we are experiencing spring-like weather almost every day. That’s enough to cause chaos in anyone’s closet. If you too are struck by the impossible dilemma of figuring out how to dress yourself every morning, we’ve compiled some tips.

Make scarves a regular part of your wardrobe
Scarves are your best friends in these strange times. First and foremost, scarves are a trendy fashion statements. You can pair a patterned scarf with pretty much any plain shirt or sweater. Scarves are also very versatile, a necessity in such temperamental weather. You can tie them loosely around your neck when it’s warm, or bundle them up once the sun sets and it gets chilly. In desperate times, a scarf can double as a shawl or a blanket. And for the truly lazy, why not just bring your blanket with you as a makeshift scarf?

This is a very good selfie. That's an impressive skill right there.
Flyby exec Kyle rocks a scarf—versatile AND fashionable!

Don’t leave the house without at least a light jacket
“Yeah, thanks a lot, mom,” you’re probably thinking. But we’re serious! Despite how optimistic you may be feeling, this weather changes as often and as frequently as your schedule now that sectioning assignments are coming out. You shouldn’t be the sad person caught outside in a strong wind without a jacket. Look through your closet, and find a warm sweatshirt or light jacket that you really like to throw on over your clothes every day. Pro tip: Some winter jackets come with an inner liner jacket. Check to see if yours does, and you can use that for a while.

Not nearly as artsy as I think I am.
Flyby co-chair Eva keeps warm and protected from the wind in a jacket that's perfect for unseasonable weather.

Glue a hat to your head (not actually)Hats are truly all that is right in this world. Whether you’re into beanies, ski hats, or bomber hats, find something that covers your ears. Hats, much like scarves, can be a great way to add some contrasting color to your wardrobe. They’re also great for this time because it’s still technically winter, and therefore totally acceptable to be wearing a hat. Maybe even earmuffs, if you’re bold...actually, maybe not. Keeping your head and ears warm is a good way to feel a little warmer regardless of what you’re wearing for the rest of your outfit. So find yourself some suitable headgear and never let it go.

Kat in the Hat, lol
Flyby co-chair Kat represents her home state with a Yankees hat.

Return of the Ivy League Campus Story

The Ivy League Campus Story is back, and to no one’s surprise, it is not lit. Unlike the snap stories of DJ Khaled, Groundhog Day, and the Iowa Caucuses, the Ivy League Story will not teach you the major keys to success, predict the future (weather), or remind you why 20% of millennials don’t vote. To preserve your sanity from one too many Columbia try-hards, we’ve recapped more than you’ll ever need to know about the Ivy League Campus Story.

Columbia is filled with try-hards

For reasons unknown the revived Ivy League Campus Story appears to be constantly dominated by Columbia students. Maybe it’s some kind of attempt at over-compensation driven by a deeply rooted inferiority complex. Either way, just talking at the camera isn’t going to cut it, Columbia. We expect a little more effort towards entertainment for our procrastination purposes.

Valentine's Day romance?

Apparently other Ivy League students are feeling the pressures of cuffing season a little more than the rest of us. So much so that a love triangle seems to have formed between a snapchat famous bachelor from Penn, a young lady from Dartmouth brave enough to ask him to be her Valentine for the world to see, and three more potential suitors from Harvard (so, technically a love pentagon). No, this is not the plot line to this year’s most anticipated romcom.

Columbia has sororities.

And if we wanted to hear screaming girls, we would’ve just watched The Bachelor.

“Suh dude” means “what’s up dude.”

Since “suh dude” isn’t self-explanatory by any means and does not sound/look anything like “sup dude,” we were so proud to see one of the only four Harvardians in tonight’s story give us the definition of this ever-so confusing slang. At least we know that we can always rely on those who make it on to the Campus Story to uphold the fine reputation of Harvard.

Apparently #IvyLeagueIntroductionChallenge is now a thing

No, not the standard “Harvard Introduction” you used all of Freshman Week of name, dorm, and concentration. The one thing that almost all of the most recent snaps that had the true honor of making it onto Ivy League Story had in common was that they had students across the Ivies rapping introductions of themselves with #IvyLeagueIntroductionChallenge. Take note of this if you’re looking for a surefire way to achieve snapfame.

Though we’ll always probably mourn the loss of our very own Harvard Campus Story, sharing the spotlight seems to be better than no Campus Story at all.

Love Story Lovers Reunite

Ali MacGraw and Ryan O’Neal seem to be getting their own second chance—at love, and at working together on something that might not be the worst (or should we say best?) movie ever. The co-stars of Love Story are reuniting as the leads in a play called Love Letters whose Boston stop starts tonight.

Love means never having to say you’re sorry, although someone should probably be apologizing for the existence of that movie. Hopefully Love Letters will give Ali and Ryan a chance to show us that they can act convincingly as a couple in love. According to the Boston Theatre summary of the production, Love Letters is another story about star-crossed lovers who must struggle against some sort of something that keeps them from being together. The play chronicles their 50 years of friendship and thwarted love.

MacGraw and O’Neal even stopped by campus on Monday to promote the Boston stop of this production, presumably because Harvard students are known for being such enthusiastic and noncritical fans of Love Story, and were waiting with baited breath for another chance to see this dynamic duo in action. We can only assume that the Crimson Key Society greeted them by shouting about “phallic symbols,” calling MacGraw ugly, and dancing around in flashy seventies-era garb.

Love Letters is showing every night this week, with matinee shows on Saturday and Sunday. We suggest seeing it as a reminder that even if you’re going to be alone on Valentine’s Day this year, at least you won’t be this couple.

Drew Faust, Football Fanatic?

Go long, Drew! Go long!
An artist's rendering of what Drew Faust probably does in her free time.
As an adopted Bostonian, University President Drew G. Faust is, of course, a diehard Pats fan. And like her fellow New Englanders, she seems to still be recovering from last week’s heartbreaking loss to Peyton Manning and the Denver Broncos. Brutal. Us too, President Faust. (Just kidding—we don’t care about sports unless it’s Harvard-Yale).

So with the Super Bowl approaching, Flyby went knocking on Mass Hall to ask some hard-hitting questions. But most importantly: who was she going to root for on Sunday?

“The Patriots,” she said, forlorn.

While Superbowl L (why does the NFL think it’s important enough for Roman numerals?) might not be her ideal matchup, Faust joked that she knew the Patriots were not, in fact, playing on Sunday. Flyby was grateful for this clarification—aren’t the Patriots in the Super Bowl every year? What is a “deflategate”? Isn't Tom Brady, like, mayor?

Faust did give her two cents on the game—come Sunday, she says she’ll be looking out for the Panthers.

“I’m actually curious because I haven’t watched the Panthers play and they’re supposed to be really good, and so I’m curious how good they’re going to be. We’ll see,” Faust said.

No word on how Faust will be celebrating given a Panthers win, but we’re sure she’ll figure something out. Hey, she might even go wild with a couple of s’mores.

Pros and Cons: Clover's New Home

Clover lovers, rejoice, because the beloved overwhelming smell of chickpea fritters that overcomes you as soon as you turn the corner to Holyoke Street will now be moving to Mass Ave. That’s right, the (terrifyingly) uncertain fate of Clover HSQ has been secured–its new home will be where Yenching (#rip) used to be. In honor of this move, here are some pros and cons of Clover’s new home.

Pro: Clover’s new location on Mass Ave makes it that much more tempting to stop by for lunch or a snack after classes in the Yard (technically, this is a con for your wallet, but a pro for your stomach). Don’t deny it—even though the move may not be that far, in the dead of Cambridge winter, we would all do anything to take one less step in the brutally cold weather.

Con: Clover’s new location on Mass Ave will lure even more unknowing tourists dropped off on this busy street after their tour of the campus. Be prepared to have a bunch of pictures of you eating taken by people who mistook its “food lab” aesthetic for an actual Harvard science lab.

Pro: Members of the Porcellian now basically have an experimental vegetarian kitchen on their premises.

Con: Members of Apley will lament at the all too real feeling of having another semi-close eatery taken further away from them.

Pro: We no longer have to stare ahead into the creepily empty space that once used to be Sandrine’s, that restaurant that only existed when our parents were in town.

Con: We now have the view into the rooms of Wigg. This means you get to watch eager and bright-eyed freshmen go to class (they probably even got up early to do their Ec10 readings), while you take your sweet time enjoying a Clover iced coffee and being late to section.

Chipot-YAY: The News You’ve Been Waiting For All Year

The Chipotle E. Coli outbreak was without a doubt the biggest national crisis of 2015. Not a day goes by that I don’t think about how much better my life would be with a burrito bowl and the best chips and guac in Cambridge. And to think of the class of 2019, deprived of the source of so much of the Freshman 15 during their first semester. Truly tragic.

We at Flyby have great news for everyone feeling the lack of Chipotle as much as us: it’s (probably, almost) safe to go back!!!!!! The CDC is expected to end its investigation ASAP, so we can all get back to rationalizing needing to skip HUDS dinner another time this week for a burrito. I personally can return to my very professional habit of arriving to meetings with a burrito bowl in my purse (don’t act like you’ve never done it).

After months of putting our health above our immediate Mexican food needs (for once), we can at last return to doing what we as college students do best: mistreating our bodies without worrying about the consequences. Before we know it, our trashcans will be filled with empty Chipotle containers that will serve as a sign of our nutritional and fiscal irresponsibility.

Felipe’s can finally go back to being our late-night drunken compromise instead of our main option for Mexican food in the Square, thank goodness. Because we all know El Jefe’s wasn’t gonna make the cut, no matter how dire the situation got.

Essential Apps for School

Nian has many unread notifications #popular
Tinder and Bumble and Insta and Uber...these are a few of my favorite things.
Mobile apps can be overwhelming. With over 1.5 million apps available for download in leading app stores, it’s difficult to figure out which apps are truly essential to our happiness and well-being on campus. What else do we Harvard students need besides Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat? Turns out, there are a few more important apps that deserve a place in all of our phones.

Want to meet new people, but too afraid to talk to them in real life? Try Tinder! Whether you’re looking for a significant other, a hook-up buddy, or just a friend, you are sure to match with plenty of fascinating people—including that one kid from your section that you didn’t mean to swipe right on.

Sometimes, one app just isn’t enough. Bumble is another popular dating app commonly used on campus. Created by the same person who made Tinder, Bumble is different from Tinder in that women have to message men first, and matches expire after 24 hours if no one makes the first move. Also, rumor has it that the people on Bumble are more attractive. Who knows?

Get all the latest information on shuttle times and HUDS menu so you know whether you should walk to class or keep waiting for the shuttle, and whether you should get excited for waffle fries at lunch or avoid the dining hall altogether on a given day.

Late for class, stuck in Boston when the T has stopped running, inebriated, or just downright lazy? Uber is here to save the day. Whether you’re taking a 20-minute journey into Boston or a quick 2-minute stint from Tasty Burger to your room, this handy app has got your back.

If the surge price on Uber is way too high, or if you consider Uber too mainstream, give Lyft a shot instead. As a bonus, the cars are easily identifiable with a 5-inch-long pink “glowstache” that drivers put on the dashboard.

We all have that moment when we walk into Felipe’s and realize that we forgot our wallet. Gone are the days of owing someone money, struggling to find exact change, and subsequently engaging in a wild goose chase as you try to find the person so you can give them their $12.48. Thanks to Venmo, you can pay your friend back immediately, and throw in a fun emoji for kicks.

Pic Stitch
If it’s your best friend’s birthday and you want to show the whole world how much you love each other, why not make a lovely photo collage of all the good times you two have had? That’s what everyone else does, at least.

Welcome to GroupMe, the (un)official means of communication for large groups of people. This includes any and all extracurricular organizations, social clubs, and other conglomerations of random people. Get ready for endless notifications.

February Horoscopes for Harvard Students

Flyby exec and amateur astrologist Kyle E. O’Hara counts many things among her talents—her impressive ability to drink Diet Coke before 10 a.m., her dogged pursuit of the position of El Jefe’s #1 customer, and her remarkable skill at napping at inopportune times. But most prominent of these talents is her questionable-at-best ESP. Check back on the first of each month for your Flyby Horoscope, courtesy of Kyle.

As a hard hitting journalist-blogger, it is my duty to bring you, dear readers, the #facts. Moreover, as a scientist*, I am here to tell you that nothing is more factually legitimate than horoscopes. Horoscopes help us figure out what to do with our love lives and careers better than any honest-to-goodness introspection or serious talks with our friends and mentors ever could. Here is just a sliver of my infinite wisdom to help guide you through your February:

AQUARIUS: Last semester, you took a risk, and your courage paid off. Remember that when evaluating this semester’s schedule—concentration credits are not everything. Try out the things that you find interesting. The stars are telling me that the best choice you can make this month is to comp The Crimson.

PISCES: You often find yourself overthinking the small things in your life. Declutter your Google Calendar, and make some time to be alone with yourself. Rethinking your priorities will allow you to soar. You are going to see success in your extracurriculars in February, especially if you comp The Crimson.

ARIES: You spend much of your mental energy trying to keep up with friends, with trends, with classes. You often feel that things are slipping from your grasp, but don’t know why or how. This month, realize that relaxing and and trusting yourself to handle it allows you to effortlessly keep up. Blogging is in this month — comp Flyby.

TAURUS: You occasionally struggle to express yourself. You wonder if your friendships are still strong as when they began, or now exist out of convenience. Seek out people with whom you share passions, not just proximity. Your social life will become infinitely better this month when you meet your fellow Crimson compers.

GEMINI: Heartbreak can be hard to deal with, especially when you have to see that person around campus. This month will be important for self-exploration, accepting, and moving on. Looking for new love? You may just find it among your fellow writers at The Crimson.

CANCER: After a long fall semester, you feel as if you may be stuck in a rut. It’s all too easy to fall into the same habits, even when they don’t make you happy. February will be a month of internal conflict, but working to expand your interests will serve you well. Learn a new skill this month — comp Crimson Multimedia.

LEO: Rethinking your choice of concentration can be scary, but it is important to take a step back and make sure you still feel passionate about your concentration before you dedicate more hours of study to it. The answer may be that you don’t—but don’t let this scare you. Harvard has a lot more to offer. Seek intellectual fulfillment at The Harvard Crimson.

VIRGO: Winter break was a transformative time for you. You’ve returned to campus feeling refreshed and ready to take on a new semester. This month, you will be relaxed and motivated enough to do your readings—even for your Gen Ed. Share your productivity with the world this month by joining the staff of The Crimson.

LIBRA: A quick look at your bank account balance shows that you must keep an eye on your late-night spending habits this month. An on-campus job will not only cover your post-party trips to Felipe’s, but will help you learn the importance of budgeting and self-control. February will bring financial success if you comp The Crimson Biz Board.

SCORPIO: The state of your dorm room reflects the state of your mind. Take some time this February for Spring cleaning. You will feel more calm once you see that everything has its own place. Be productive this month by joining The Crimson’s comp.

SAGITTARIUS: You came to a large realization this winter break that has allowed you to see the world, and your life, in a new light. Remember that feeling of epiphany, even as you start to get bogged down in work this semester. This February, you will have to work hard to hold on to this new perspective, but it will be worth it. Talk about your feelings — comp Editorial.

CAPRICORN: February is often a hard month at Harvard, with short days, tall snowbanks, and lonely Valentine’s Day. However, this February will be unlike the others for you. Keep a positive outlook and positive things will happen. This month holds success in every facet of your life, as long as you comp The Crimson!

*Hey, I took SLS20 before I declared Hist and Lit.

Check back on March 1st for next month’s horoscope! In the meantime, why not drop by The Crimson’s Open Houses on Monday, February 1 and Wednesday, February 3 at 7 p.m.

Getting Over Your Post-Vacation Woes

Ignacio's vacation in Argentina was warm and sunny. Cambridge is not. The transition was hard.
Ignacio's vacation in Argentina was warm and sunny. Cambridge is not. The transition was hard.
You’re well rested, well fed, possibly a little tanner if you went somewhere warm: you just got back from a vacation.

While Harvard might be considered a beacon of shining light in the academic world, in meteorological terms, Boston is pretty mediocre. It’s cold, wet, and the sun sets before you even start to mentally wake up. After spending my winter break abroad, further South, or in the warm sun of California, it can be hard to readjust to Cambridge life. So how can one overcome their post-vacation woes? If you posses the super-human ability to simply block something from your memory, then by all means use it. However, if you’re a mere mortal like us, you’ll have to resort to different mechanisms.

One option is to simply commit to far more academic and extracurricular commitments than you know is feasible. This technique, which is especially common amongst freshmen, is a surefire way to forget your vacation, and also make your life miserable. Having employed this strategy a number of times in the past, we at Flyby can confirm that this isn’t the way you want to do things.

Another slightly less painful way to get over your vacation is to do something fun. Yes, we know, it's a novel idea to do something "fun" that is not "productive." But maybe try to pick up a new skill like doing pottery, or read a book for fun, or go to one of Boston's many museums. Even listening to music and taking a walk down the Charles can help you readjust to Harvard life.

Or you could convince your parents to visit you at college (unfortunately, we at Flyby are #unloved and thus un-visited). It’s still early enough in the semester that you don’t really have too much work, so you’ll have time to hang out with them. Spending time with parents can be highly therapeutic and make home feel a little bit closer. Plus, they’ll wine and dine you.

Your last option, of course, is to take another vacation. Seriously. There are so many opportunities here to travel abroad (maybe even on Harvard’s dime). If you spend your entire semester anticipating your next vacation, you’ll surely get over your post-vacation woes.

Love It or Hate It: Flavored Water Dispensers

Winthrop d-hall's flavored water dispenser. (Not shown: the colony of fruit flies that lives next to it)
New flavored water dispensers: a HUDS triumph or the bane of our existence?
Love It: "HUDS is Now Sort Of, Almost Classy" by Hyemi Park

Let’s talk business—the new flavored water machines in the d-halls are the best things to have happened to HUDS since its website redesign (we at Flyby are very invested in all things HUDS if you couldn’t tell).

Maybe you didn’t even notice the machine. Maybe you are a die-hard Powerade drinker (ew) and couldn’t care less. Maybe you’re thinking it’s “just” water. If so, you need to ditch your unenthusiastic outlook on life because this is exciting.

First off, these flavored water machines are particularly life-changing to people like me, who simultaneously hate water and feel guilty about not drinking enough of it. I’ve convinced myself that downing iced coffee is sufficient for my daily water intake if I wait long enough for the ice cubes to melt. This new addition is great because I can feel like I’m drinking something that isn’t water (read: tastes good!) but is actually good for me. Some of the flavors are also apparently enhanced with vitamins, which is amazing because the last time I actively took a vitamin supplement was in middle school circa the era of gummy bear vitamins.

Another plus is that you can probably incorporate them into your next low-budget pregame. You just invested all of your life savings into cheap handles that taste like rubbing alcohol, why would you want to go broke buying mixers at CVS? Try mixing your next shot of good old Rubinoff with the cucumber flavor, a dash of Ginger Ale, and ice for a poor man’s Moscow Mule. Or maybe try some rum with the sparkling raspberry flavor—yum! Just call these drinks cocktails and congrats, you’re officially the fancy bartender of your stuffy and sweaty dorm room pregame.

Finally, the sparkling water flavors make your HUDS meal ten times classier. It’s practically the equivalent of when you go to a restaurant and the waiter asks if you want tap or sparkling water and you splurge money on some San Pellegrino to feel luxurious. So the next time you have a gourmet meal of Apple Zings and red-spiced chicken breast with your roommates, you should toast to that with the new sparkling lemon water.

Hate It: "I Wish It Was Possible to Un-Taste That Abomination" by Kamara Swaby

I always do appreciate the effort HUDS has made in order to provide us with more options, (RIP bacon bleu cheeseburger from the grill). Even the “healthy” ones. So when I saw that there were additional drink choices in the dining halls, I was excited. We can’t all drink gallons of Diet Coke for breakfast, lunch and dinner. That being said, this group of new options are an evil done to human taste buds.

The lemon sparkling water is just heavily diluted, sugar free lemon lime Powerade. Even if you are a Powerade hater like Hyemi, you don’t deserve this water-downed monstrosity. The lime-mint one is a great alternative to mouthwash if one doesn’t like it too strong. And the cucumber is forgettable, at best. In general, the new selection tastes like regret and diet Capri Sun. Ever heard of diet Capri Sun? No, because it doesn’t exist, because it would suck.

Drinking the new water has in fact, made me want soda more in order to compensate for the disturbing flavor. I was so good at not drinking soda for ages. The minute after drinking the sparkling lemon flavored water, I ran back to get two glasses of regular Coke. Not even Diet Coke. Thanks, HUDS.

I definitely would not want to go to a party or a pre-game that served this instead of normal mixers. Sure, it may seem fancy and classy to drink Burnett’s vodka you had stored for 1 year with no chaser except for sparkling water. But will that matter when you regret your life decisions more than usual at 8 a.m. the next day?

If you look at how-tos for making flavored water, you will see that they actually use fruits. You know what fruits have? Natural sugar and great flavor. It would have been better if HUDS had made dispensers where they add actual fruits (don’t brag, Adams House) instead of this poor, poor substitute.

Nice Try, Lampoon...

But is a poor imitation flattery or an insult?
Imitation is the highest form of flattery, right?
#ComptheCrimson because yes, you too can be a tacky cartoonist. It’s a joke that’s been done before. This Saturday morning, the campus was greeted with a load of recycled humor, with just a sprinkle of good material mixed in. Well, most of the campus...sorry to all the folks in Kirkland who got skipped over. You didn’t miss much.

Throughout most of the year, Flyby—and the Crimson in general—is too busy producing actual content to give much thought to The Harvard Lampoon, a semi-secret Sorrento Square social organization that used to occasionally publish a so-called humor magazine. The fact is that they simply aren’t funny; have you ever flipped through one of their magazines? It’s the sort of humor that only people who spend their time in a castle plastered with basic neon signs would appreciate.

Every now and then, though, they get lucky. Like this summer, when they pranked Donald Trump—that was actually funny. And occasionally, some freshman slips into the organization and gives them a dose of material not yet tainted by their dry humor. This gets passed off as an annual spoof of the Crimson, something almost as funny as that cat video on Facebook that your mother just tagged you in.

Better luck next year, Lampoon.
Breaking: Lampoon at its funniest when they don't have to write more than one sentence.

The highlights:

ISIS gets Turnt: Only at Harvard do we find people willing to take that extra step and turn the recruiting videos for a terrorist organization into a spoof on housing day promos. All day yesterday, we were lowkey expecting some freshman to not realize the paper was a fake and drop a tip to the government that Harvard is in league with ISIS.

Dean Khurana, Denial is the First Step: Best quote: “Sometimes I’ll give the Fox a quick glance,” a noticeably blushing Khurana confessed. Khurana was otherwise unable to comment for this article, replying to most questions with: “Clubs? What clubs?”

Self-Important Op-Eds: “Maybe It’s Time to Stop Checking Our Phones and Start Checking Our Privilege?” Yeah, this one actually doesn’t feel too far from the truth—can’t you just imagine some drunk section kid slurring this to you at a party between rounds of slap-cup? Never mix socializing with your class readings, kids. Also deserving a mention is the “Black Lives Matter by the Poster Boy for White Guys,” in which a probably yacht-loving, sperry-wearing, Vineyard-Vines-loving bro opines on the Black Lives Matter Movement, probably fresh off of the golf course at his country club. He’s just glad he could contribute to the conversation.

An Abundance of (re)Virgins: Hands down the best article. This one goes out to all the Yik-Yak stalking, friends-with-benefits searching thirsty folks fiending for a quickie in the stacks who have been thus far unsuccessful. Props to the survey respondents for finally checking their emails.

Bottom line: if you want to be part of an organization that only sporadically (read: once a year) posts funny content, then comp the Lampoon. But if you want to be a part of the Harvard College’s OG publication—and join your favorite student life bloggers here at Flyby—show up at 14 Plympton St. this Monday and Wednesday at 7 p.m. See you there!

Hemenway's Short Stories: Simon

The gym was crowded, like a bar in Pamplona during a Festival. College students talked by the front desk. Graduate students also talked by the front desk. College students and graduate students did not talk to each other. I did not talk to college or graduate students. I walked down the stairs into the free weight area. I wanted to use one of the benches, but the law students had overtaken them all. Bastards. They had probably never even been to a bar in Pamplona.

One of the law students saw me standing, doing no exercises. His shirt read “Harvard Law School Intramural Basketball”. He asked me, “Hey, are you trying to work in?”


I made my way to the dumbbell rack and started doing biceps curls. That would show the law students. I do not share my benches. As I lifted the weights, I thought of fishing, hunting, and bullfights. 20 repetitions later, I thought to myself, “Stop being so damn sentimental,” and re-racked the weights. Finally, some of the law students were moving away from the benches. They did not have the courage to do another set. Then I noticed who had walked into the free weights area of the gym during my revelry: Simon.

Simon is tall, probably 6’4”. Simon has blonde hair and big muscles. Simon has an accent. Russian, I think. Last week, I saw Simon bench the 105 lb. dumbbells for two reps. I was impressed. It is easy to imagine Simon going to Pamplona to attend a Festival. I have done so many times. Later, I might ask Simon to spot me and help me with some repetitions. Maybe we could talk about Spain and bullfights. I hope he thinks that is manly enough.

“Hey, are you trying to work in?”


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