Crimson staff writer
Marco A. Torres
A fashionably disheveled student, beanie and all, saunters through the door and slumps down into a chair across from a serious-looking blonde girl. He apologizes for his tardiness as he rummages through his backpack and pulls out his laptop. “Take your time,” she responds, in a voice that’s simultaneously understanding and agitated.
When I tell people I’m from Alaska, I get a variety of responses from “You must get a lot of snow!” to “Doesn’t it get dark there all the time?” to “Do you have penguins?”. I’m not kidding about these. I’ve heard them all, and more. Alaska has such a distinct character that most people feel they’re well acquainted with the “Last Frontier.” Unfortunately, this acquaintance often seems to stem from a regrettable combination of Sarah Palin and TLC.
At the turn of the 20th century, the Harvard Union was built to provide a club for social purposes open to all Harvard University students; the space was meant to unify a social scene that seemed to be primarily run solely by final clubs and other “elite” institutions.
Both Blitzstein and Elkies are known to be terrific chess players. Blitzstein is ranked as an “Expert” by the US Chess Federation, placing him in the 98th percentile of tournament players. Elkies is ranked even one step higher as a “Master,” and specializes in solving and composing chess problems. Both have been playing chess for as long as they can remember, but the serious mathematicians have found it difficult to find time for their favorite game at Harvard. FM asked the two to revive their passion for a quick match of speed chess.
The buildings on Harvard’s campus that feature “brutalist” architecture, such as Canaday Hall, were not actually designed to thwart student rioting as rumor suggests. On the contrary, brutalist buildings were meant to oppose repression and control, therefore promoting high culture.
The first day of classes this year, I became confused when I tried to exit Canaday through the large semi-circular gates behind the dorm. The gates were locked. How odd.