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Though I’m red-green color blind and will never understand the obsession with chromatic foliage, I hear Walden Pond is beautiful in the autumn. If you catch it on the later end of October, the drying air heightens the borders of faces or the edges of each watery ripple; everything has the sharp sense of coming into focus. Unfortunately, I went in July.
As she tries to wrap her lips around the hard consonants of the English language, my grandmother fumbles with my small Nike garments. Turning them over and over, she attempts to enunciate the lone word in her English lexicon without much success.
My most recent haircut was in New York City. I went in by myself and ducked into the basement of the huge Astor Place Hairstylist like I was trying to lose a tail.
He opened the door to reveal a tiny room cluttered with ski waxing benches, oversized duffels, rainbow clusters of racing skis, and scattered posters of Olympic skiers peeling off the stark white walls. I could tell right away that this wasn’t the latest in ski technology: this was a home.
I have a confession to make. It might, perchance, be conceivably possible that I have potentially developed a slight dependence upon the product known as Netflix. To be clear, I tell you this only because I fear for your safety and well-being. I divulge this story in the hopes that it will make you aware of the fate already befalling you; perhaps then you will be better equipped to handle the consequences.
Residents of Tel Aviv have ninety seconds after the alarms sound to locate the nearest public shelter. It happens once a day, maybe twice, timed before the morning or evening news.
I saw my first fireflies in the blue light of the equatorial dusk. But between the hikes and organic food and endemic species, we also were given an idea of the larger issues looming over this ecosystem.
Two weeks ago, to the amusement of seven of us at the time and many more since, I paid for my roommate to get a face tattoo.
I awoke at 6 a.m. on March 13 to the hiss of my radiator and the loud, excited chatter of my blockmates in the hallway. It was Housing Day morning, my first as an upperclassman in Cabot House. I debated with myself whether to get up at all, anticipating the faces of freshmen—ranging from (hopefully) indifferent to (probably) teary-eyed—whose fates I would soon deliver.
The ice crunches beneath my feet as I follow my roommates out into the middle of Eliot courtyard. It’s surprisingly bright out for 6:30 a.m., and some combination of adrenaline and the traditional Housing Day mimosa I consumed in one of the party suites robs the frigid wind of its sting. We stand with our backs to each other and shout at the surrounding walls. “Good morning Eliot! It’s Housing Day! It’s Housing Day! Get up, get up, get up!” We stand still for a moment, watching as lights start to pop on in the windows that line the courtyard. Eliot is waking up.
The Bracket Boys emerged one March in my sophomore year of high school, wearing the same sweaty jerseys for days on end and trading wrinkled dollar bills under the lab tables in chemistry class. Or maybe they had always been there, furiously scribbling on those all-important flowcharts, and I had simply never noticed them before. After all, I had only just realized that March Madness was not, in fact, an insanity-inducing disease brought on by a seasonal resurgence in bacteria.
Going to Iceland for spring break was not my idea, really. My friend, a senior who will soon be a working woman in a tall, mighty tower in New York City, wanted to have one last trip before she committed to a no vacation offer. The location remained undetermined for months. Darjeeling, as advertised by Wes Anderson, was a good candidate considering the mission of the trip, but Reykjavik, as advertised by Icelandair on the T, won the competition with cheaper fares.
Dressed in a Harvard jersey and hat, I received some inquisitive stares as I flagged down one of the bartenders and asked if she could possibly put the Harvard game on. Figuring this might be a long and lonely two hours, I settled in to watch Harvard take an early lead.
They don’t have postcards in Bangladesh, or at least in Chittagong where Devon lives. So Devon made her own postcard to send to me. She smoothed newspapers written in Bengali script into the folds of a patterned pink paper, backed it on cardstock, and penned a message on the inside that bled through the pulp.
In a minute, she will whisk the skillet off the burner, move it over towards the pie pan sitting on counter, and coax the apples into the pan. She will do it all in one fluid motion. Afterwards, she will cover the apples with a round, yellow-tinted pie dough circle, slide the pan into the oven, and wait.