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May 1, 2019 |

p.4 EOTW: Nick Joyner

p.10 69th Street: Foreplay

p. 22 Anne Ishii & Erotic Manga


Annabelle Williams, Editor–in–Chief Dalton DeStefano, Managing Editor Daniel Bulpitt, Audience Engagement Director Lily Snider, Assignments Editor Ethan Wu, Media Director


Sophie Burkholder, Word on the Street Editor Katie Bontje, Ego Editor Sam Kesler, Music Editor Eliana Doft, Special Issues Editor Meerie Jesuthasan, Long–Term Features Editor Angie Lin, Developing Features Editor Bella Fertel, Style Editor Maryanne Koussa, Film & TV Editor Josephine Cheng, Arts Editor Emma Boey & Sophia Dai, Photo Editors Tahira Islam & Katie Steele, Copy Editors Dean Jones & Jackson Parli, Video Editors Alice Heyeh, Print Director

Here Is My Story

EOTW: Nick Joyner, Samira Mehta


Ego Beats: Amanpreet Singh, Michelle Shen, Sophie Xi, Caroline Emma Moore, Chelsey Zhu, Sonali Deliwala


Music Beats: Beatrice Forman, Arjun Swaminathan, Teresa Xie, Melannie Jay, Johnny Vitale, Julia Davies, Paul Litwin

Climate Action

Features Staff: Katrina Janco, Shinyoung Hailey Noh, Allison Wu, Srinidhi Ramakrishna, Caroline Riise, Paige Fishman, Chris Schiller


69th Street: Foreplay, Philly Boxing Gyms



'The Curse of La Llorona', Anime 101, Movie Musical


Barnes Exhibit, Anne Ishii


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Video Staff: Jean Chapiro, Christina Piasecki, Anab Aidid, Deja Jackson, Megan Kyne

Film & TV Beats: Anna Collins, Shriya Beesam, Shannon Zhang, Zovinar Khrimian, Calista Lopez, Ana Hallman, Samantha Sanders

Copy Deputies: Sarah Poss & Kira Horowitz

Arts Beats: Jess Araten, Katie Farrell, Adeleke McMillan

Copy Associates: Kate Poole, Serena Miniter, Erin Liebenberg, Lexie Shah, Carmina Hachenburg, Luisa Healey, Agatha Advincula

Design Editors: Gillian Diebold, Lucy Ferry, Jess Tan, Tamsyn Brann Associates: Anna Callahan, Christy Qiu, Isabel Liang, Ava Cruz, Donna Liu

Audience Engagment Associates: Brittany Levy, McKay Norton, Kat Ulich, Emily Gelb, Ryan McLaughlin, Valentina Escudero, Samantha Lee, Nadeen Eltoukhy, Fiorentina Huang, Rachel Markowitz, Julia Zhu

Staff Writers: Liz Kim, Jordan Waschman, Anjalee Bhuyan, Shunmel Syau, Bebe Hodges, Emma Harris, Tara OʼBrien, Jessica Bao, Mehek Boparai, Zoe Young, Sophia Schulz-Rusnacko

Cover Illustration by Isabel Liang

Illustrators: Anne Chen, Anne Marie Grudem, Brad Hong, Carly Ryan, Catherine Liang, Jake Lem, Reese Berman, Saranya Sampath, Jessi Olarsch, Christopher Kwok, Diane Lin, Jacqueline Lou, Sabrina Tian, Kathy Chang, Ben Joergens Staff Photographers: Sophia Zhu, Eleanor Shemtov, Alice Deng, Hoyt Gong, Sukhmani Kaur, Mona Lee, Sally Chen, Adiel Izilov, Christine Wu, Anran Fang

Contacting 34th Street Magazine: If you have questions, comments, complaints or letters to the editor, email Annabelle Williams, Editor–in–Chief, at You can also call us at (215) 422–4640. I am a child of God. Of Jesus.

©2019 34th Street Magazine, The Daily Pennsylvanian, Inc. No part may be reproduced in whole or in part without the express, written consent of the editors (but I bet we will give you the a–okay.) All rights reserved. 34th Street Magazine is published by The Daily Pennsylvanian, Inc., 4015 Walnut St., Philadelphia, Pa., 19104, every Wednesday.


Songs Instrumental To Our Experiences

Style Beats: Karin Hananel, Allie Shapiro, Jen Cullen, Alice Goulding, Diya Sethi, Hannah Yusuf

ell. We’re halfway done. Not the school year, but the term on the Daily Pennsylvanian’s 135th Board. It’s kind of messing with my head — the idea that my tenure here is bound by a calendar year that will be over before I know it. I know this semester happened. I was there. But in many ways, it’s kind of a blur — so many late nights in the office, so many issues papering the walls, so many Slack messages and slices of New Style pizza. Oh, and, for the record, I sometimes went to class. But this semester feels like it’s barely started, and now it’s over. Soon, the class of 2020 will be installed as seniors at Hey Day and the class of 2019 will be shipped off into the “real world.” We’ll leave for the summer, finish our finals, and maybe see our families. Things happened, and they will continue to happen. And there’s nothing I can do to make it stop. As tired and stressed as I may be right now, I still want to live in this moment. I want to preserve the time I was Street’s editor–in–chief in amber, because it’s the proudest and most fulfilled I’ve ever been. I have a home here, friends, a purpose. And it’s terrifying to think that my time in charge is half-done. Half-empty.

But I guess this is the part where I make a glass half-full pun. There’s a whole other half of 2019 to mess up, cry, laugh, binge-watch Netflix, cuddle in the Snuggie I keep in my desk drawer. And it’s not like life ends after Street does. It’ll just be a new set of challenges and a new setting to experience them. So let’s see what happens.

my story Word on the Street



**Content warning: The following text describes sexual assault and can be disturbing and/or triggering for some readers. Please find resources listed after this article —a full list of resrouces is available online.** I saw him today. It’s a face I’ll never forget. Ironically, almost two years exactly after the incident, while on my way to interview for a position in a group that strives to prevent acts of sexual violence on campus, I locked eyes with the boy who raped me. Part of me wants to spare you the details, but a bigger part of me knows the more I leave open, the more abstract these incidents will become to those who have been lucky enough not to experience one themselves, and that abstraction would lead to a step backwards from empathy. So here is my story. After blacking out often in a particularly dark spiral of freshman year, I looked to Fling with excitement. I went out all day and linked up with some friends for the concert before going out even more, late into the night, despite my rain–soaked hair and exhaustion. I pushed my body to its limits, and in the basement of a fraternity house at 2:00 a.m., I felt a blackout. The next day I woke up, head heavy, with nausea making the room swirl. I staggered down to my best friend’s room at the end of the hall and collapsed on her bed, trying to remember the night, but not really caring, figuring this blackout was no different. As I came to a bit more, I realized how badly I had to pee. I walked down the hall to the bathroom, sat on the toilet, and began to pee. It hurt. When I wiped, there was blood. Not a lot, not like my period. More like after the first time I had sex. And then it hit me. Someone was inside me

With the end of Sexual Assault Awareness Month, I want to reflect on what happened to me.

last night, and I don’t remember somehow had the wherewithal to it. leave—thank God he didn’t try I couldn’t breathe, and yet I to stop me. I remember running had a weird sense of calm, an home, getting under the covers elevated panic that went beyond with my clothes on, hoping and physical representation. When praying that I would wake up I got back to my friend’s room, the next day with the memory I didn’t hesitate to say, “I think of a nightmare. But there was no I might have gone home with denying the soreness between my someone last night.” legs, or upon closer inspection, In response to these vague the small bruises on my hips—I words, she raised an eyebrow and had been raped. coyly asked, “Ooh, who with?” For a long time, I told no one “No,” I told her. “I mean I about it. I thought because seethink I went home with someone ing a picture of his face triggered and hooked up with someone, but I don’t remember any of it.” “Oh,” she said. It’s only after this exchange that I thought to open my phone and look through my photos, to find a trace of what happened. I saw drunk selfies Anne Chen || Illustrator and wobbly videos taken of my surroundings at various time memories that helped piece topoints. The last pictures taken gether that night, it meant that I were at 2:32 a.m. of my coat in wasn’t fully blacked out, and that the fraternity house basement, it couldn’t be rape, because since perhaps in an effort to remember I wasn’t fully blacked out I must where I’d put it. have been sober enough to conThen I opened my Facebook sent, right? Looking back, I think app, and it all rushed back. At the I told myself this because I didn’t top of my screen was a notifica- want that label of a victim. I see tion for a friend request. When myself as strong and beautiful I viewed the profile, the face in and deserving of only the most the picture appeared as the face respect, and I didn’t want to think of the person thrusting on top of that I could let myself be in that my motionless body in a moonlit position. I blamed myself and my dorm room. I remember having a irresponsibility. I didn’t want to moment where I briefly came to, be broken, and for a while, I let shaking in this stranger’s bed, and this experience poison everything

that I loved about myself. I thought that if I didn’t talk about it, it would go away. When I did have the courage to tell a few people, they would be surprised. They would tell me it didn’t make sense. They would ask why I wasn’t more upset, why I was quiet and serious. But I don’t think there is a right way to react to this. In some moments, it hits me. At the beginning of this year, I started seeing someone I really liked. We had so much in common and it seemed from the start that it could potentially be the kind of intimate connection I had ruled out finding in college. Then I found out that he was in that fraternity, and that he lived in that house. I remember waiting for him to fall asleep the first night I spent at his place before crying. I didn’t want to leave, but it hurt to be there. I thought about telling him, but things ended with us before I had the courage to, so I kept those feelings to myself. In hindsight though, I think a part of him could tell something was off. I don’t know what I want this to say. I’m a big fan of analysis. I love to take a poem or a story or a work of art and find the meaning. But when it comes to this, I can’t. Maybe it’s because I still live in a fear about this event, or because I will never be able to see this situa-

tion from the outside, but I don’t know what value this story could impart. And yet I feel it must be told. I don’t want my name or details attached because I don’t want people who know me to use my personality as justification for this boy’s violence against me. This is more than a story about me. This is something that has happened to someone you know. If I had to attach a motivation, I would say that I decided I wanted to say something. Because I am tired of hearing only statistics. I am tired of looking around at the crowd of students at Take Back the Night, and thinking to myself “Is this it?” I am tired of having to listen to my father argue about why he thinks we should question victims of sexual violence when they make an accusation against an employer. I’m sorry I am not yet brave enough to put my name on this piece—I promise I am trying to get there. But for now, especially because April is Sexual Assault Awareness Month, please read the dark details, and never allow yourself to deny that this is real. This is a moment I think about every day. But the biggest source of pain for me right now is the knowledge that this could have been prevented, that a whole roomful of people saw this boy take me home in a nearly incapacitated state of drunkenness and did absolutely nothing. Be an active bystander. Protect each other. And please be careful. CAMPUS RESOURCES: The HELP Line: 215-898HELP: A 24–hour–a–day phone number for members of the Penn community who seek help in navigating resources for health & wellness.

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Ego of the Week: Nick Joyner

Hometown: San Antonio, Texas Major: Communication and Cinema Studies Activities: 34th Street Magazine, Philomathean Society, LGBT Center, Kinoki Senior Society, Friars Senior Society

Street's former supreme leader in conversation, one last time. Rebecca Tan

Ethan Wu | Media Director

Nicholas T. Joyner is excellent with details. He speaks about twice as fast as anyone else and floods his sentences with exact notes on everything — and everyone — he’s encountered. He’ll stumble occasionally on the name of a professor, director or angsty Street hater, but before you have the chance to pull up Google, he’ll snap his fingers and grab the name right off the tip of his tongue. Nick spent last year as the Editor–in–Chief of this magazine, capping off a long career as writer and editor. When the Cinema Studies / Communications major wasn’t line–editing features or pinpointing cover art, he was dissecting films and soaking in media theory. And yet, if you spend enough time with this 6–foot–5 gazelle of a human being, it’s

clear that he’s had a keen eye long before Penn. As a 16–year–old in San Antonio, TX, Nick interned for a summer at the San Antonio Current, an alt-news weekly that sat opposite his high school. Five years and numerous, detail–laden film reviews later, Nick and I sat down at Metro to reflect. He talks about everything from his time as the HBIC of Street to the mysticism of his home state, Texas. Rebecca Tan: You’ve written before about the moment you picked up a copy of Street and decided to go to a writer’s meeting. Let’s go back to that moment — what drew you to the magazine? Nick Joyner: It’s funny because I wrote about Street in my college application. At the time I didn’t know what I wanted to do

academically, so I made it a lot about extracurriculars. I wrote about working at the LGBT center, I wrote about wanting to be in Philo and I wrote about Street, all of which I wound up doing. After I was admitted to Penn, my mom and I visited campus. It was a Thursday, which is when Street used to run. I picked up a copy, and remember feeling both interested and jarred… I registered that this was the outlet for feature writing, and I liked that they were writing film reviews, but I was also a little put off by some of the “et cetera” sections like highbrow and lowbrow. RT: Interesting. So how do we go from that point to eventually running for EIC? NJ: Freshman fall, I came to almost every writer’s meeting. Freshman spring, I became a

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Film & TV beat writer, which was amazing, because I got put on all the press emailing lists. Later, I became Features editor, which was when I got serious about the EIC role. I saw the former Editor–in–Chief, Orly Greenberg, make strides that I really agreed with, like cutting shoutouts and the RoundUp, which helped me see the role as an opportunity to change the parts of Street that used to make me uncomfortable, or at least nudge it in that direction. RT: Let’s put Street aside for now. I think a lesser–known fact about you is that you’re incredibly accomplished academically (Nick will be the flag-bearer for the Cinema Studies department at graduation and was recently named a 2019 Dean’s Scholar. And oh, did we mention the Thouron?) Tell us a little about your academic life at Penn. NJ: I came into Penn thinking I was going to do Political Science, but in freshman year, I took a seminar on science fiction cinema under Chris Donovan, which was a fantastic introductory class. It made me go, “wow, I can take classes about movies.” In freshman year, I also took Communications 123 with Dr. Litty Paxton, who has become a great academic mentor and friend of mine. The class was a lot about media theory, cultural studies, and did a good job of being a survey of a lot of critical approaches. Later, I took Tim Corrigan’s introductory class on world cinema, 1945–present. Tim’s class placed a big emphasis on film history and critical

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theory, which I really enjoyed. He’s actually been my thesis advisor. RT: Okay, can we talk Texas? I know it’s a huge part of your identity, and you always talk about it with some sentimentality. What was it like coming from Texas to Penn? NJ: Aw yes. I miss Texas so much; I didn’t appreciate Texas until I left it. For people in the northeast, Texas is a monolith, and the only place they want to visit is Austin for SXSW. But I have family across the state, so I’ve travelled all over. What always strikes me is how diverse it is. For vacations as a kid, my mom and I would just pick some place in Texas because it always feels like you’re somewhere else. There’s something mystical about Texas. It is its own nation; there’s nowhere else in the country like it. This isn’t to romanticize it and say that it doesn’t have its own host of problems, but I do miss it.

LIGHTNING ROUND Current song on replay: "Tia Tamera" by Rico Nasty and Doja Cat One thing I’ll miss about Penn: Being in close proximity to my friends. The density of people I love. We will never be all here again. It makes me sad. There are two types of people at Penn: The ones who entertain and the ones who observe.


Meet Samira Mehta, the Student Who’s Changing How We Think About Water at Penn The sophomore reflects on her long history with Isla Urbana and the urgency of water scarcity issues around the world. Chelsey Zhu Sophia Dai | Photo Editor

Samira Mehta (C ’21) was a junior in high school when she first heard about Isla Urbana, an organization dedicated to helping solve the water crisis in Mexico City. Now, Samira has gone to Mexico City twice, installed rainwater harvesting systems, and raised thousands of dollars for the nonprofit through Isla Urbana at Penn, a club she co– founded last semester. When Isla Urbana first visited high schoolers in Texas, Samira had no idea that the organization would follow her for years. The president introduced the water crisis in Mexico City at a seminar for the Junior World Affairs Council. In an effort to raise money for water systems, he began a competition: whichever clubs raised the most money would send two students to Mexico next summer to do hands–on work. “When this whole thing was presented to me, I didn’t even know there was a water crisis in Mexico City,” says Samira. But as she started researching the issue, the crisis resonated. She learned that in rural communities around Mexico City, people sacrifice large chunks of their lives for access to water. Because there’s no infrastructure around filtration, families often rely on “las pipas,” or water trucks. “Once every week, the water truck will come,” she says. “And [families] have to survive off of that amount of water until the truck comes again. Because of that, people are liv-

ing off 20 liters of water a day.” An eight–minute shower usually takes 65 liters of water. The crisis is even more urgent because water trucks don’t always come on time. Families spend hours gathering water from filling stations in the mountains, and women and children often bear the burden. “Women can’t focus on their careers, children can’t go to school,” she says. After becoming more informed, Samira threw herself into raising money. Her club was one of the top fundraisers and she was excited to be one of the students selected for the trip. Going to Mexico City allowed Samira to witness these issues firsthand. She walked with locals to filling stations in the mountains. “The walk itself is like 20 minutes, but you’re doing it several times a day, and you have to go up and down, and also it’s extremely steep.” Rainwater harvesting systems collect, filter, and store water that locals can rely on during the dry season. Overall, rainwater harvesting systems in Mexico City provide individual residences with 40% of their annual water supply. Samira got to help install a system in a school. “This system is going to bring generations of water to children in this school,” she says. “The system took a couple hours to install, and after that they have clean water. That’s all it was. It’s something that their entire lives they’ve been struggling with, and in a few hours of our

time, they have it.” When Samira got to college, she knew she wanted to continue working with water scarcity issues, but there wasn’t a similar organization that existed at Penn. She decided to start Isla Urbana at Penn with her friend Pallavi Menon (C, W '21). At the close of its second semester, the club has raised $7000 for the nonprofit. Samira and Pallavi raised the

bulk of that money from Isla Urbana’s first annual Walk for Water, a fundraiser in collaboration with the Water Center at Penn. The event started at Shoemaker Green, where members of the club gave speeches on water scarcity issues. Then the group walked through Penn Park to the Class of 1923 Arena, where students got to enjoy food, music, and ice skating. Overall, the club was able to raise $4000 from the

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event. “We didn’t know if we’d be able to accomplish it because I had never put on an event like that before,” she says. She hopes to double or even triple attendance for the Walk for Water in coming years. With the extra funds, Samira will be able to send five club members to Mexico City. She’s looking forward to having Penn students experience the same life–changing trip.

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Caution vs. Revolution:

The Battle Over Climate Change at Penn Students are upping the pressure, but Penn's administration still seems reluctant to pursue bold action. By Katrina Janco As the Penn Board of Trustees approved hundreds of millions in construction costs at a meeting this past November, sober– faced students silently stood in the back holding posters reading, “YOU ARE FUNDING CLIMATE CHANGE.” This was not the first time students expressed disdain for Penn’s investment in fossil fuels. Less than a month earlier, the Board rejected Fossil Free Penn’s second divestment proposal in three years. One of these students at the

Trustees meeting was Jacob Hershman (C '20), a campaign coordinator for Fossil Free Penn who spent months helping to write and edit FFP’s proposal. Since its rejection, FFP has been broadening its scope and working to educate non–activists. Even though its members are active and still protest at Board meetings, “we are very, very, very tired of inaction,” he says, sighing heavily. It is hard to go a day without seeing headlines about climate change and its catastrophic consequences. From the Arctic's ice

vanishing to Central Americans fleeing their homes to find a better life in the United States due to the instability of farming, climate change affects everyone and every part of society. It has only worsened over time, and is on course to continue. Penn has taken steps to be more sustainable, from purchasing more green power to installing tap water filters all across campus. But for students in environmental groups, these stand– alone efforts are not enough for a university with an endowment | 215.387.8533 4006 Chestnut Street

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of $13.8 billion. They don't just want divestment—they call on Penn administrators to use their institutional influence to lobby for climate action legislation and pursue bolder action, such as running on 100 percent renewable energy and establishing LEED platinum buildings on campus. But University administrators have been hesitant to even talk to these student groups—let alone push for such wide–reaching efforts—and students are fed up. The few university initiatives that exist, namely Penn Sustainability, are constrained by Penn’s bureaucracy, and subsequently operate a world away from student activists. Vyshnavi Kosigishroff (C '22), one of the organizers of the Penn Climate Strike hosted earlier this semester, feels that most of the pressure to be sustainable is put onto the students. “We don’t really have any support from any administrator up there,” she says with composure. Tori Borlase (C '22), another organizer of the Penn Climate Strike, adds, “It’s not as if [the administrators] think they have some sort of responsibility in the first place. W e

want to make sure they do understand that they do have that responsibility.” Tori goes as far as to say that the only things capable of motivating Penn to change are the fear of bad press or losing money because of its inaction. There is no administrative branch tasked specifically with fighting climate change. The one that comes closest is the Penn Sustainability Office, which operates under Penn Facilities and helps with building and maintaining infrastructure. It is also known for planning events like ‘Bike to Work Day’ and tree giveaways, which, to students like Vyshnavi and Tori, only scratches the surface. However, according to Ben Suplick, the director of Engineering and Energy Planning at Penn Facilities and Real Estate Services, “Penn is doing a lot of things that other schools wish they could do. It’s pretty impressive in comparison.” His assessment is based on his previous employment experiences at other universities in addition to the talks he’s had with his peers. “[Penn students] don’t see what’s happening at Jefferson or LaSalle or Villa-

Isabel Liang | Illustrator


nova or Princeton. I think if they were to take a look at what those institutions are doing, they’d realize that Penn is really putting [its] money where [its] mouth is.” Dan Garofalo, the director of Penn Sustainability, expresses some understanding for the Board of Trustees’ predicament regarding climate action. “Sometimes I joke around and I say, ‘We do have a Board of Trustees, we don’t have a board of radicals. ’” He paused before delivering the punchline. Garofalo continues, “The idea of being a Trustee is that you want to guarantee the stability of the institution from generation to generation, and the way you do that is you’re conservative.” Faran Savitz (C '19) argues that the Board of Trustees’ notion of knowing better than students doesn’t make sense when it comes to the climate. “You can’t just say ‘we have the experience’ because we have never experienced something like what’s happening with increases in storms and rising sea levels.” He is one of the co–presidents of Penn Environmental Group, which he describes as “a gateway drug for environmentalism,” and is not known for being as vocal or aggressive as Fossil Free Penn. But he thinks that, given the urgency of rising temperatures, PEG will move towards a more activist stance as well. “I think,

when push comes to shove, it might be time to start shoving." Garofalo characterizes his office’s approach as “pretty cautious, but also pretty inventive.” Penn Sustainability pilots many new programs before expanding, such as the student–led Hand Dryer Pilot Project in Ware College House. Suplick generally avoids trying cutting–edge technologies. He views his responsibility as making sure everything runs smoothly. “We tend to want to be the second person, not the first person [to try something], because there’s too much risk to being the first person to try something, especially on the large scale,” he says. “I’d prefer to have someone else do it first and succeed, and then we can learn from that and do it better.” Jacob takes issue with this attitude. “There’s going to be a certain amount of risk in making any sort of revolutionary decision,” he says in disbelief. “Penn is one of the most influential and financially capable institutions in the world, and if any entity should be pioneering the types of shifts that we need in order to safely proceed into the future, it should be Penn.” While Suplick knows that “students [want to] see big change and significant programs that are gonna change the face of sustainability,” he strongly believes that the small things make

a big difference: “If I could get people to turn off their lights, unplug things, set back their thermostats, recycle, walk instead of drive their cars. [If] everyone just did a little tiny bit … and all [took] a little bit of ownership in the effort that we’re putting forth, we could see … improvement. And then trust Facilities and the administration that we’re trying

to improve the bigger pieces.” Jacob’s response to that sentiment is deadpan: “That's insane.” Although he agrees those small actions are important, “the immediate emissions that arise out of the consequences of Penn's existence as a consumer, and the more microscopic level of the individuals that comprise the Penn community—those emissions pale in comparison to those that result from Penn's investment in coal, oil, and natural gas.” Typically, frustration with Penn’s inaction isn’t directed at Penn Sustainability. Among students, the office’s reputation is that of the little engine that could. Faran describes Penn Sustainability as just “four people, some of whom are straight out of college.” On his end, Garofalo admits to the disconnect between his office and the world of Penn students. “I’d love to find out more about the culture of undergrads,” he says with a sigh. While Penn Sustainability works in many areas, it primarily focuses on infrastructure and re-

ports to Penn Facilities and Real Estate Services. This is because when Penn started looking into its footprint, Garofalo says that, “we realized the biggest aspect [was] the fuel used for heating, cooling, lighting our buildings, and running all the things that are plugged into the walls.” The need to have clear metrics to measure progress also justifies this infrastructure focus. It does mean, though, that some sustainability initiatives are invisible to students, such as efforts to recycle construction debris. Another point Garofalo admits is that running a university requires continuous building of new research facilities. Even with Penn’s commitment to building sustainably, Garofalo points out that these buildings are energy– intensive and expensive. In this way, Penn Sustainability is tasked with balancing two disparate goals. To this point, Vyshnavi says that “Penn Sustainability does a really good job of taking the onus from the administration.” Garofalo maintains that he

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has “absolutely” been supported by the University. Faran, who has interacted with Garofalo, responds to that claim semi–ironically: “He might say that.” Suplick adds that, if students make the business case for it, “they’d be more than willing to support that.” At the end of the day, it’s difficult for Penn Sustainability to initiate large–scale programs because Penn Facilities and Real Estate's funding comes from the various schools and centers. Suplick acknowledges this model’s challenges. “I can’t say, ‘we’re gonna go do this,’ I have to go to that school and say, ‘Are you in agreement to this in your organization?’” But for Faran and others, navigating budgets and bureaucracy is a trivial challenge compared to the looming threat of climate change. They believe that Penn should wield its power and money beyond campus in the political sphere. “[Climate change] is the greatest threat facing humanity right now. Every single aspect of

society is going to be affected by climate change, and it’s happening in the next decade,” Faran says. “[Penn has] respect and prestige in almost every community. And [it’s] not doing enough with it.” Penn spends more than any other Ivy League university on lobbying, but it is difficult to tell whether or not Penn lobbies for or against climate action. Office of Government and Community Affairs Executive Director Dawn Maglicco Deitch responded via email to an interview request, stating, “Penn OGCA has no comment to offer on this topic at this time.” Penn has occasionally publicized these efforts to the Penn community. In one instance, with regard to the tax reform bill in late 2017, President Gutmann even wrote an email to Penn students urging them to contact their representatives. But when it comes to climate action, the school’s political stance is much harder to discern. Garofalo says the majority of the relationship between Penn

Sustainability and the Office of Government and Community Affairs is based on information exchange rather than lobbying, such as letting Penn Sustainability know about “[opportunities] to take advantage of funding, a grant, or something the city is doing.” He also emphasizes that lobbying and other political activities are outside of Penn Sustainability’s realm. The Board of Trustees did not respond to several requests for comment. In an email, Peter Ammon, Director of Penn Office of Investments, stated that Penn’s investment portfolio intends to “support the school in perpetuity, which means we have a duty to try to maintain purchasing power even after spending and inflation.” Penn’s investment managers, he added, “must be highly ethical people.” While he acknowledged that “this includes considering the implications for investments of both climate change and potential policy responses,” he did not comment directly on fossil

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fuel investments, or to what extent the implications of climate change affect their decision. Though there is a clear disconnect between student activists and the administration, everyone does seem to agree that the student body needs to be more informed, and that it can be difficult to connect with students on these issues. Dr. Simon Richter, the program director of the Penn in Berlin & Rotterdam summer program, conducts informal climate literacy surveys in some of his courses, and finds most students to be "woefully uninformed" about the climate crisis. Richter follows Penn’s sustainability initiatives with skeptical rigor. He has the FY18 Penn Sustainability Annual Report on his desk, which he flips through before stopping at the section about university–related air travel. He points out that, despite constituting a decent portion of Penn’s greenhouse gas emissions, no current initiatives exist to limit its impact. “I’m not saying that air travel has to stop, but we need to recognize that air travel is a major producer of climate pollution,” he says. Richter believes that Penn should have a climate crisis sector, with every department creating its own discipline–specific course for it. He also suggests that Penn assign the 2018 IPCC report for the Penn Reading Project. Faran is currently working with the Dean of the College to implement mandatory climate crisis education, as he believes students don’t know enough about the climate crisis beyond “polar bears and ice caps.” Part of the issue, according to Vyshnavi, is that Penn is not an activist campus. “It’s not what our culture breeds,” she says matter–of–factly. More specifically, Jacob believes that privilege blinds Penn students to the ways their actions impact the environment. “The people who go to this school, on the whole, have no conception of what the environment is. …

That the environment is not a distant, abstract idea; it’s something that we live in, it’s something that’s degrading rapidly.” He adds, “People can separate the trash they throw away from the notion of horrible waste that they’ve heard about on the news, because they’re so high upon that pyramid. … A lot of students here [can’t] see their actions as actions bearing weight and consequences.” Garofalo wishes he had the opportunity to connect with students more often. While he enjoys working with the student Eco–Reps, there are only twenty. He often sees students littering and not recycling, even when they know better. “I always struggle with how can we get the message out in a way that reinforces the urgency that students are responsible for the environment,” he says. Faran has similar frustrations. “There’s no reason to carry around a five dollar bottle of Fiji water. Just carry around a reusable water bottle and fill it up.” But Jacob believes Penn students can have an impact beyond their daily actions. In fact, he thinks mobilizing students is the only way to get institutional change. “I think that if Penn sees how strong its students are, and how big of a risk we’re willing to take to achieve what we want to achieve, they’ll capitulate.”








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It's (Fore)Playtime The one thing that needs to be included in all bedrooms. Ryan McLaughlin

In the midst of a steamy hookup, there’s nothing like the feeling of just jumping into things right away and throwing all cares away. The mix of intense desire and lust begin to override the brain and leave only one idea in mind: sex. As great as sex can be though, what often is under– appreciated and even overlooked sometimes is the power

of the buildup leading into it, and it’s time that we begin to value the one thing that allows sex to be so great. And that my friends is foreplay. Sex is something that should be personable, and there’s a reason that intercourse and intimacy are associated with one another, and without foreplay, the beauty of that intimacy becomes lost. Foreplay helps

to establish connection between both partners as both parties become invested in one another. It allows for optimal arousal to be reached because often times while one partner may be at peak arousal, the other has not even gotten halfway there. With foreplay, it leads to the best experience as possible because quality sex isn’t meant to be one-sided

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since its fueled by both people’s desires. One of my first sexual encounters at Penn was saved because of this exact power that foreplay has in the bedroom. Sex has always been something that, while exciting, also terrifies me deep down. The feeling of total vulnerability and exposure makes my body almost close up like a clam shell, sealed up tightly due to the power of insecurity, and because of it I tend to hold myself back from going all the way with a person. This anxiety filled the back of my mind as I was bringing a guy I had just met back to my dorm after getting to know each other and a night filled with conversation. I had no idea what was going to happen or how far things were going to go, but the next thing I knew, I was being pulled down onto my bed and the foreplay had commenced. Now, according to studies, the average time of sex is 5.4 minutes of intercourse with 10–15 minutes of foreplay, but when the guy I was with began to initiate, almost an hour had gone by. Within that almost sixty minutes, I had completely forgotten about my nerves, and all tension that was in my body was totally released. I was able to fully get situated and immersed with

the situation that I was in and create a connection with the guy who was currently in a place that is normally reserved for just myself. And I felt great about it. It’s reasons like this that foreplay is as an essential aspect for both partners. It allows for you to get comfortable with one another and prepare yourself for enjoyable intercourse as it serves as a sort of “warm up.” Foreplay allows the body to process arousal and prepare for penetration, which can be not enjoyable if rushed into, and the last thing that anyone wants to feel during sex is any sort of pain or discomfort. Interactions can be awkward at first, especially if it is the first time meeting someone, and if you’re anything like me, sometimes this awkwardness creates and internal tension that causes me to keep myself restricted and guarded. However, that’s when foreplay comes in to wash away any sort of nerves and pressure. So while maybe it’s just the hopeless romantic who dies for any sort of small gesture of affection being bias, it’s time to reinforce the importance of foreplay and building up the connection between partners during sex. You wouldn’t skip watching a movie to get to the end, so why ever skip the foreplay?


A Comprehensive Ranking of Philly Boxing Gyms Which is a knockout? Jordan Wachsman The Philly boxing scene has exploded– it seems like there are endless options for classes nowadays. This can be overwhelming, but don’t worry. Street visited each one so you don’t have to, and ranked the 5 most talked about boxing gyms on fitness, atmosphere, amenities, and price. 5. TITLE Compared to the other gyms I visited, I found TITLE to be nothing particularly special. The other gyms I visited excel in certain categories, but TITLE wasn’t too memorable in any category. Fitness: TITLE offers a high– intensity interval boxing, kickboxing, and MMA classes of various lengths. Atmosphere: According to TITLE’s website, the boxing gym prides itself on being “a brand of inclusion. All bodies, all weights, all abilities are welcome here.” This atmosphere of inclusion makes for a productive fitness space. However, classes are large which makes for a less personal environment. Amenities: TITLE has showers and lockers, and facilities are clean and well–kept. However, there are no built-in locks on these lockers so members have to bring their own, and there are also no towels available. $: Monthly membership at TITLE starts at $80 4. Joltin’ Jabs Joltin’ Jabs is the only boxing gym on this list that isn’t a chain, which makes it a great– you’ll feel like your training to be a real boxer here. However, a quick search of reviews shows that the owner’s emphasis on discipline and promptness is a little too intense for some.

Fitness: Joltin’ Jabs is exclusively dedicated to boxing. Classes are focuses mostly on bagwork, but also include some strength and cardio moves. Atmosphere: This boxing gym has a very personal atmosphere. The owner is old–school and values discipline and promptness (the door is locked a minute after the class starts). Staff are clearly passionate and treat customers like training fighters. Amenities: This gym is relatively small, and does not have showers or an incredibly sleek design. It feels like a no–frills boxing gym. $: Individual classes cost $30, but better deals are available with purchase of class packs. 3. Rumble Rumble Boxing recently opened in center city, and its garnered much attention since. Their classes are favorites of celebrities like Kendall Jenner and David Beckham. Rumble excels in the amenities category, however the high prices and judgy vibe take away from its rating. Fitness: Each class is split between punching combinations and HIIT strength training. Atmosphere: The atmosphere feels less like a stuffy gym and more like a rave thanks to the in-house DJ, flashing lights, and graphics. However, the fact that everything about Rumble is instagrammable also makes it also feels a little judgy, and it’s clear that not everyone would feel comfortable participating. Amenities: The amenities are great– the facility is filled with beautiful art pieces, and includes beautiful showers equipped with Dry Bar products.

$: Rumble classes don’t come cheap. Each one costs $34, plus a one-time $8 fee for wraps and a $3 to rent gloves. 2. CKO At CKO I got a lot of personal attention. This gym excels in fostering a community, and was above average in all the categories and gave me a good workout that made me want to return. Fitness: The classes at CKO are 1–hour long, and focus mostly on the punching bag. However, they also include some strength moves in their classes. Atmosphere: CKO makes it clear that they are an inviting gym, and that they are open to people of all levels and abilities.

They also foster a tight–knit community. Amenities: Showers and locker rooms are available. $: CKO classes are purchased on a monthly basis, and a membership costs $80 per month. Considering the unlimited access you get out of this membership, CKO seems like a good deal. 1. Everybody Fights Everybody fights was my favorite because it dominates in every category. It provides great fitness options, an inviting atmosphere, and state–of–the– art amenities at an affordable price. Fitness: Everybody fights offers boxing classes of various sorts; those that focus on

technique, endurance, circuit training, bag work, and restoration. However, they also are a full–service gym, and members which members allowed to use during open hours. Atmosphere: The atmosphere of Everybody Fights is inviting and motivating. Instructors provide personal attention and staff are friendly. Amenities: Both the locker room and showers are beautiful at this facility, as it says on their website, “train like a boxer and live like a king/queen.” Overall, the gym has a sleek design and is clean and professional. $: If you buy a 10 pack of classes, each is $20. Considering the access you get for that price, this seems like a bargain.

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PHI BETA KAPPA Class of 2020 Adam Alghalith Daniel E. Cohen Mahip Grewal Saleel S. Huprikar Justin A. Iannacone Srinivas V. Mandyam Abigail Poteshman Christeen Samuel Adithya Sriram Irene W. Su Pranav R. Trivedi Jenna P. Weingarten

Class of 2019 Parker Isaac Abt Frank Sebastian Aguilar Nicholas Dewhirst Akst Eric Anthony Arellano Lara Safinaz Balikci Ava Barzegar Nicholas Hayhurst Berrettini Yulan Chen Gaby Simone Coetzee Julie Cohen Catarina Madeline Conran Emily Caroline Cunningham Stephen George Damianos Amanda Michelle Damon Adriana Svetlana Dropulic Lea Eisenstein Eric James Eisner Justin T. Estreicher Erin Farrell Mia Rae Fatuzzo Minna Bathsheba Fingerhood Gregory J. Forkin Jack Tate Foster Shreya Ganguly Arlene M. Garcia August Gebhard-Koenigstein Clay Scott Graubard Lena Villamil Greenberg Victoria A. Greene Megan Elizabeth Gumina Emily Christina Hancin Renee Lynn Hastings James F. Hiebert Callie Isabel Holtermann Yu Chen Hua Tiffany Huang Stephen John Imburgia Meerabelle Anna Jesuthasan Alexandra Ru-lin Johnson Nicholas Todd Joyner Carson O’Hazza Kahoe Reina Leigh Kern Kyle David Kersey Elias Nicholas Kotsis Heidi H. Lee Jonathan A. Levine Rachel N. Levinson Rebecca Grace Li Patrick Loftus Ying Luo Mark Macerato Sarah Jean Marron MacKenzie T. Mauger Abigail Mary McGuckin Carly Davis Miron Anea Brianna Moore Samuel Musker Kevin Timothy Myers Ajjit Chidambaram Narayananan

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Lucy Nebeker Grace Catherine O’Neil Samuel Jay Orlin Matthew Roderick Osborn Elizabeth Shields Peartree Rachel Julia Pester Yann Pfitzer Francesca Maria Polizotto Rachel Jessica Pomerantz Deborah Naomi Rabinovich Melo Susan Joy Radov Eric M. Rawot Pranav Gudipally Reddy Chloe Lucy Reum Gabrielle Elise Rothschild Joseph Daniel Sachi Sandy Samuel Morgan Ellen Savige Anissa Martha Saylany Nicholas Alexander Scarsdale Lauren Alexis Schafrank Emily Rose Schwartz Eric Matthew Selzer Benjamin Paul Semeao Alexandra A. Siwulec Murray Eli Skolnick Saad Slaoui Rishabhadeva Tanga Cathy Hanh Ngoc Tran Emily Charlotte Trimm Steven John Vitali JiCi Wang Annabel Roberts Ware Jack Weisman Karen Elizabeth Whisler Derek Willie Rachel Leigh Zachian Jiasi Vicky Zhang Class of 2018 Helen Berhanu Maria Cano Jeffrey R. Careyva Lindsey Marie Chambers Patricia Elizabeth Chan Seung Hyun Chung Mihir Sanjeev Dekhne Adam C. deLisle Jordan A. DellaValle Courtney G. Dougherty Jared Michael Fenton Trevor William Glenn Sophia Griffith-Gorgati Edda Briana Haggerty Evan Louis Honig Alexa Clare Ignaczak Kassidi Shuron Jones Hannah Shay Juhel Jillian Tara Karande Nikitha Kosaraju Stella Lemper-Tabatsky Maya Ronit Levine Bo Han Li Samantha Mei Linhares Brian J. Liu Daniel Kjell Lundgren Arjun Pranav Malik Catherine Mary O’Donnell Cornell Grey Overfield Bela Jai Parekh Onyoo Park Kristen Rye Pearson Bryan C. Rodriguez Nathaniel Hawley Rome Xinhe Shan MyungJin Shin

Karis Leigh Stephen Yuen Tze Stephanie Tang Michael John Torcello Shirin Vetry Connie I. Wong Jieun Yoon SENIOR SOCIETIES CIPACTLI (FALL 2018) Aiden Castellanos Ariana Hurtado Celeste Diaz Francesca Amaral Janeliz Lopez Joseph Brau Julia DaSilva Maritza Hernandez Melissa Perez Pamela Espinal Samantha Hernandez Sebastian Gonzalez Stephanie Ureña Vanessa Howell

Kirubel Gebre Kunal Naik Larisa Morales Liza Babin Noa Jett Sarah Fortinsky Sydney Essex Vijay Ramanujan Vincent Armetta Zach Evans

FRIARS (FALL 2018) Alex Johnson Aren Raisinghani Austin Rahmin Brendan Taliaferro Bryce Klehm Carter Thompson Charlie Sosnick Courtney Quinn Jackie Lawyer Madison Dawkins Nadia Kim Rebecca Tan Reggie Murphy

HEXAGON (SPRING 2019) Alec Bayliff Alex Proschel Alex Wysoczanski Alexis Mitchnick Alisa Bhakta Allison Domm Arielle Stern Calista Dominy Caroline Okun Caroline Raquel Caroline Weiss Chloe Dietz Dakota Wallach Danielle Tsougarakis Danny Leiser Davis Polito Dayita Sharma Ezaan Mangalji Gabriel DeSantis Guner Yenal Jack Bellwoar Jack Talley Jake Goldman Jared Marks Jazzy Ortega Joe Iwasyk Julie Bougard Julia Dardaris Julia Messick Katie Simms Lauren McLeod Liam Bartie Lucas Almada-Sabaté Maria Turner Mark Bloom Mason Elms Matthew Steinberg Matteo Sciolla Max Hartman Natalie Munson Omkar Savant Phoebe Altenhofen Sierra Mills Sydney Essex Tessa Bloomer Vishal Tien

(SPRING 2019) Ace Escobedo AJ Brodeur Amos Armony Andy Shao Caroline Furrer Cary Holley Gabby Rosenzweig Hugh Reynolds Jason Pak Jess Davis JJ Ricchetti Jordan Williams Karim El Sewedy Kendall Grasela Kerry O’Neil

MORTAR BOARD Akin Paksoy Alexander Egg-Krings Ariana Callender Arjun Patel Ben Berger Brett Allan Brookie McIlvaine Caroline Kellogg Daniel Leiser Danielle Major Devon Turner Dylan Mulvihill Frank Langfitt Grace Boroughs Halle O’Hern

(SPRING 2019) Adrian Armendariz Alana Adams Angelica Padilla Ariana Nunez Bri Rodriguez Camill Fernandez Cinthia Ibarra Darlene Hodge Rodriguez Javier Becerra Lisa Romero Lisbette Hernandez Matthew Cross Roberta Nin Feliz Sylvia Davis Tandra Mitchell Willma Arias de la Rosa

Harrison Mashaal Jamie Roback Julia Frontero Julie Bougard Katherine Palmer Kiley Mahoney Kolby Kaller Lea Petermeijer Lorenzo Castellanos Nathan Fisher Nicholas Biden Nicholas Ignaczak Nick Amore Nick Rosato Nicolas Garcia Noah Zylberberg Oli Lane Renata Holmann Samantha Klingelhofer Samhith Punukula Sarah Fleming Stefani Manis Thomas Kern Trang Trinh William Murphy ONYX (FALL 2018) Alana Mays Amaka Okonneh AnnaClaire Akoto Catherine Monk Chieme Ohanele Chris Harrison Dayo Folaké Adetu Ekunda Wonodi Folasade Lapite Leslie Hicks Lyndsi Powell Sydney Acquaye Whitney Stewart Yasmeen Duncan (SPRING 2019) Adriana Richmond Anthony Okolo Ashley Gilmore Aula Ali Cary Holley Chrissy Walker Daneshé Henry Davion Joseph Erin Bussey Imani Davis Justin Roberson Kay Holmes Louis Davis Mckayla Warwick Merobi Degefa Olivia Diong Roberta Nin Feliz Toni Walker Zee Yusuf ORACLE (SPRING 2019) Aarathi Sahadevan Anisa Hasan-Granier Anvit Reddy Arman Ramezani Carolynne Liu Eva Zhang Grace Wu Hadeel Saab Hari Kumar Kamaljot Gill

Linda Ashmead Louis Lin Madeleine Ngo Natasha Menon Nurul Ezzaty Binti Hasbullah Sanjana Adurty Serena Xue Tanusri Balla Tanya Jain Ton Nguyen OSIRIS (SPRING 2019) Bella Essex Caroline Terens Christopher Paolucci Clara Phillips Duval Courteau Eduardo Ortuño Emily Johnson Helene Chesnais Jason Li Jessica Liu John (Jack) Allison Kaila V.T. Helm Kat Wang Katie Wasserstein Kunal Naik Kwaku Owusu Lina Shi Megan McKelvey Nathaniel Redding Priscilla Felten Sara Seyed Shane Goldstein Siani Woods Sophia Lindner Sydney Essex Tiger Zhang SPHINX (FALL 2018) Eric Calvo Halle Abraham Hannah Gibbons Lauren Sorantino Michael Krone Stephen Damianos Zuhaib Badami (SPRING 2019) Adele Li Anisa Hasan-Granier Arush Jain Caleb Diaz Cinthia Ibarra Damien Koussis Eva Zhang Jordan Andrews Kamal Gill Kwaku Owusu Louis Lin Melissa Janet Perez Melissa Song Nadiyah Browning Nia Akins Romy Simpson Sebastian Gonzalez Serena Xue Siani Woods Tafshena Khan Tanya Jain Wesley Neal Yasmina Al Ghadban

The Hey Day picnic for the Class of 2020 will be held on Thursday, May 2nd from 10:00am – 11:45am on the High Rise Field at 39th & Locust Walk. The class procession will depart from High Rise Field at 11:45am. The Hey Day ceremony will take place at 12 noon in front of College Hall. No bottles, cans or containers permitted in the picnic or in the procession down Locust Walk.

Senior Honor AwArdS

Althea K. Hottel Award: Gaylord P. Harnwell Award: David R. Goddard Award: R. Jean Brownlee Award: Spoon Award: Bowl Award: Cane Award: Spade Award:

Anea B. Moore Savi Joshi Julia L. Pan Candida Alfaro Calvary M. Rogers Ryan M. Leone Michael B. Krone Aren M. Raisinghani

LeAderSHip AwArdS Association of Alumnae Fathers’ Trophy: Class of 1915 Award: James Howard Weiss Memorial Award: Penn Student Agencies Award: James Brister Society Student Leadership Award: Assn. of Latino Alumni Student Leadership Award: Assn. of Native Alumni Student Leadership Award: Black Alumni Society Student Leadership Award: UPenn Asian Alumni Network Student Leadership Award: LGBT Alumni Association Student Leadership Award: William A. Levi Kite & Key Society Award for Service and Scholarship: Penn Alumni Student Award of Merit:

Trustees’ Council of Penn Women Leadership Award: Sol Feinstone Undergraduate Award:

Stephen Wise Award:

Reeham K Salah Mark W. Andrew

Stephen G. Damianos Callie I. Holtermann Gabriella A. Lott Alba M. Disla Erica L. Dienes Anea B. Moore Luke J. Kertcher Chloe M. Cheng Andrea Ning Lamis Elsawah David Gordon Nicholas C. Hunsicker Breanne K. Mastromarino Jonathan L. Soslow Gabriella A. Lott Candida Alfaro Elana M. Burack Lyndsi N. Burcham Jacob A. Kind Zuhaib H. Badami Elana M. Burack Aliya S. Farmanali

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songs instrumental to


To cap off the spring semester, Street decided to compile a list of songs instrumental to our experiences, featuring eight songs with personal stories chosen by different members of 34th Street’s music staff and our editors. Music is a big part of all of our lives, and we all have those songs that remind us of home, got us through a tough time, or otherwise defined our adolescence. So here is a small piece of our story, featuring songs that—for different reasons—have contributed to who we are.

“Amy aka Spent Gladiator 1” by The Mountain Goats MELANNIE JAY

Nov. 11, 2017 fell during one of the worst times of my life. My grades were slipping, my second set of college midterms was on the way, I was recovering from a two– week–long stomach bug, and my grandfather had died nearly two weeks prior, hit by a car on his way home from church. I didn't really have the enthusiasm or time to get up and see another concert, but I had purchased my tickets to The Mountain Goats all the way back in August, so I pulled my jacket on and went to Union Transfer anyway. There are so many songs I could have chosen by The Mountain Goats for this piece, songs I ended up screaming the lyrics to while speeding down US–12 on a day off of school or struggling to play on guitar

without getting emotional. "This Year," "Up the Wolves," "Cotton," "Cry for Judas." All of the traditional survival anthems have pulled me up and made me face a brand new day. But at that show, it was "Amy aka Spent Gladiator 1" that drove me to tears in that horde of indie rockers, because frontman John Darnielle managed to capture in a three–minute song the best advice nobody ever saw fit to give me: "Do every stupid thing that makes you feel alive." People who suffer with anxiety, depression, and other mental illness can find it so easy to get hung up on the idea of recovery, the idea that if they do everything right, all of their afflictions will someday be cured. Sometimes, they will resist steps to help them be a little less miserable every day, because those steps are imperfect. Sometimes it's because they know that the thing that would help them feel better isn't healthy ("Find where the heat's unbearable and stay there if you have to") or out of fear of ridicule ("People might laugh at your tattoos / When they do get new ones in completely garish hues"). No matter what the reason, the effect is the same: They stay in the trenches of their sadness, waiting for that perfect way out. My freshman fall, I was stuck in that trench, waiting for a perfect solution to make all of my problems go away, digging myself even deeper into the pit that I had made in the process. I had worked so hard to subdue

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the impulses that made me happy but didn't make the most sense: going to concerts on school nights, spending money on "real" food instead of the dining halls, going out with friends instead of locking myself in my room and studying. I found out soon enough that forcing myself towards a "perfect" recovery didn't help my grades, social life, or physical health; but it did serve to make me more miserable, and that by going to that concert, I had satisfied John Darnielle's request. "Amy" has a clear message, one that I needed to hear and that maybe someone else does too. Take a Netflix break, go to a concert, make impulsive and sometimes stupid choices if they make you feel better, instead of worse. Just stay alive.

“Reborn” by Kids See Ghosts ARJUN SWAMINATHAN

"Reborn" stands out as a work by Kids See Ghosts, a duo of my two favorite artists, Kanye West and Kid Cudi. Among the seven tracks from their self–titled album released in June 2018, the song stuck out among the others as the most emotionally jarring, introspective piece, hitting close to home. Let’s start with the production—the track isn’t grandiose in its instrumentals, but “Reborn” conveys a beautiful, tranquil vibe. From Cudi’s opening humming over the soft piano chords to the dulled drum–clap

beat, the song feels otherworldly, transporting you to a dimension of solace that siphons away all the negative emotions clouding your thoughts. As someone who constantly struggles with being swallowed up by such feelings on a daily basis, I find it to be a purifying experience for the production alone. Regarding the content itself, “Reborn” covers West and Cudi as they analyze their personal problems and struggles with mental illness before resolving to push past their mistakes and obstacles. West’s verse deals with his controversial nature and battles with social anxiety and bipolar disorder, noting that “Soon as I walk in, I’m like, "let’s be out"” and “I was off the meds, I was called insane,” before responding that “I want all the rain, I want all the pain” and “All of you Mario, it’s all a game.” West constantly faces environments where he feels out of place or disparaged by others, but he resolves to deal headfirst with those obstacles, because life is like a game which you have to play until the end, just like Super Mario. Similarly, Cudi discusses his drug addiction and depression, as he raps “At times, wonder my purpose / Easy then to feel worthless / But peace is something that starts with me.” Like West, Cudi has had his fair

share of issues, but is expressing a firm determination to overcome them. The chorus is simplistic; a repetition of “I’m so—I’m so reborn, I’m movin’ forward / Keep movin’ forward, keep movin’ forward” with slight variation, which echoes the same notions expressed in the rappers’ respective verses. In regards to personal meaning: like many other Penn students, I’ve struggled with depression and feelings of being worthless. I’m prescribed Lexapro, the same SSRI that West has taken in the past. Both artists have explored the depths of misery in their music, whether it be in 808s and Heartbreak by West or in Man on the Moon I or II by Cudi, so to hear them declare that they won't be stopped by personal nadirs is inspirational, giving hope that life can, and will, get better as long as you don’t give up. Like a phoenix, we can all be “reborn” from the ashes of our past.

“Well-dressed” by Hop Along SAM KESLER

I am notoriously indecisive. Everything from ordering at a restaurant to what I’m going to wear each day; I can take hours


to pick a movie on Netflix. So when it came time to pick a college, I was screwed. I took a couple weeks off in high school to visit the three colleges I had been accepted to, and see what I thought of each of them. I made my first stop in Philly, where I spent Quaker Days running up the Rocky Steps, trying Wawa milk for the first time, seeing the Philly skyline. I was soon off next to New York for another college visit. When I got there, I learned that the school I was visiting wouldn’t give me any financial aid because I missed the deadline. So that was out of the question, and now I had some time to kill in NYC. When walking around, Hop Along’s “Well–dressed” came on. Beginning with Frances Quinlan’s hushed voice singing, “Well–dressed, but walking in the wrong direction,” she goes on to describe her central narrative figure, misguided and confused, who descends into paranoia and fades away. The entire band jumps in halfway through to accompany, turning the gentle song into an anthemic portrayal of mental illness, as Quinlan sings, “do doodoo doodoo” until the bands exits once again, and her scream turns into a whisper. I googled the band and found out they were from Philly, and by the time I arrived at my third college, there was no need to make a decision: I already knew I’d be attending Penn. I had to move to Philly. When I finally got to see Hop Along in concert last year, they performed “Well–dressed” for the encore. I stood at the front of the crowd and recited every word, not caring that my voice would be shot the next day. It felt like the culmination of a long journey to see the people who had inspired my college life, and to hear the song that showed me where I needed to be. I knew I wanted to be in a place where music like this

could exist, where a band who eschews genre and convention could be one of their most revered and celebrated. If it hadn’t been for that song, I might never have chosen Penn, or gotten started writing about music, or met so many of the wonderful people who support and inspire me. I might not have made any of the other great decisions I’ve made ever since I heard it.

“I Wanna Get Better” by Bleachers BEATRICE FORMAN

They say you often remember the exact moment you fall in love, romanticizing a memory so hard it becomes ingrained in the left side of your brain. I remember the first time I heard Bleachers, a four piece indie band headed by megawatt producer Jack Antonoff, and while I’m not sure if this means I’m in love, I definitely feel something close enough to it. It was the spring of eighth grade and I was desperate to change everything about myself before high school. I went through a check-list endemic to the experience of a pudgy middle school girl with a quiet, if existent, social life: Lose weight, check. Learn how to do eyeliner, check. Make friends and maybe kiss a boy, a work in a progress. In short, I wanted to get better, however elusive that process may be. So when this song played during my morning workout, which was riddled with sit–ups and Eighth Grade–esque affirmations, it felt like the universe was trying to tell me something. “I Wanna Get Better” was a jam baked in the sadness of evolution, of realizing that growth never stops and only slows. The song sounds like a plethora of beginnings—the piano mimics a doorbell ringing, the drum pantomimes

incessant foot–tapping, and the synths crescendo. Actually comprised of some voicemails and choppy piano keys, the song details Antonoff’s grief process following the premature death of his sister and cousin. It's a therapy session condensed into three minutes and twenty six seconds, culminating in an ultimately inspirational message—Antonoff wants to get better, even if it means shedding the traumas that make us. When superimposed on the experience of a middle school girl lacking teenage friendships with substance and the maturity to differentiate loneliness from simply being alone, “I Wanna Get Better” sounded like an anthem. The lyrics’ unabashed honesty resonated deep within me, shaking the

relentless part of my personality that white—knuckles acceptance like its fleeting. Lines like “I’ve trained myself to give up on the past” and “I miss the days of a life still permanent,” while now clearly about grief, echoed my personal mission. I yearned to forget my old self, who still wanted to hang out with the cliques that shunned her and fantasized about bat mitzvah invites, in a favor of a new self. A better one, insulated by a girl gang and an ebullient self confidence. While admittedly “I Wanna Get Better” didn’t make me better in the ways I hoped—I mastered eyeliner but never small talk or flirtation, and never accumulated more than a handful of convenient friendships—it did, in some roundabout manner, make

me better in a more important way. The song spawned what rapidly become an obsession with Bleachers that lead me to do something my middle school self would balk at: Go to a concert alone. Twice. The second and third times I saw the band headline, at Governor's Ball and Terminal 5 respectively, I weathered the awkward silences between acts with a measured amount of gusto and talked myself out of buying unnecessary merchandise. I rode the wave of a concert’s climax alone and screamed the lyrics that defined my teenage years with tone deaf earnest and confidence. For the first time, my solitude was unfettered by solipsism. My loneliness felt crowded, teeming with the exuberance of a live performance. Had I had company, I wouldn’t have been present. I would’ve floated above myself, somewhere in the mezzanine of a concert venue, worrying if my friend was dancing enough or texting other people about the other places she’d rather be. “I Wanna Get Better” made me redefine better in kinder terms. Better is quieter, and more self–assured. Better takes stake in what a moment has, not what it lacks. “I Wanna Get Better” taught me that loneliness and being alone aren’t synonyms, and that ultimately the only person I should want to get better for is myself.

“No Waves” by FIDLAR

JOHNNY VITALE Suburbia is boring as all shit, especially on the outskirts of Los Angeles. Driving down the arid, eight–lane freeways, homogenous housing complexes spring up from the desert

as far as the eye can see. This sameness comforts some, but for the pseudo–existentially concerned teenagers, it becomes unsettling. Strip mall after strip mall, any night’s good enough to get high and go to McDonald's. There has to be more than all this concrete and dirt, we thought to ourselves. And who the fuck decided it would be a good idea to put these palm trees here? At 16, I heard FIDLAR’s “No Waves” for the first time. “I feel, I feel like fucking up my life / Again with all my friends / I hope we’ll make it til the end,” I screamed with the wind in my face driving top down through the summer heat. Sweating bullets, my friends and I journeyed home from the beach that day, an hour long ride, shirts off and sunglasses on, hoping that someone would look at us the wrong way. The song birthed my infatuation with the emerging SoCal garage rock; as with every disenchanted high–schooler, I’d be obsessing over Burger Records for years to come. Up until hearing FIDLAR, I thought rock and roll had died and all that was left were my Led Zeppelin records. What a relief it was to happen upon a thriving garage rock scene. Listening to FIDLAR felt important in such a way that only youthful naivete can allow for. Contrarian in its raw authenticity and provocative with its drug–induced escapist theme, “No Waves” frantically amplified our underlying apathy louder than we would've been able to scream it ourselves. For us, boredom was a byproduct of always searching for something more. In retrospect, I don’t think we knew what we were looking for. I don’t know if I even could say now what it was. Freedom? Control? Identity? Maybe all of those at once. Beautifully uncertain as we zig–zagged through our teenage years, we painted walls and picked fights, but nothing

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could prepare us for what was to come. The bubble burst, we grew up, and we moved on. Time is a double edged sword to say the least. Now we’re settled in our identities apart, seemingly confident in who we are and what we do. Yet when we reunite, I get a sense that we’re still looking for that something. Sometimes I question whether this search must go on. Or will we settle ourselves? Will it be cool? I’m not sure. But I still get bored, and I still listen to “No Waves.”

“Nobody” by Mitski JULIA DAVIES

My first semester of freshman year, I found myself returning to one album: Mitski’s Be the Cowboy. Mitski’s lyrics were the most honest words I had heard. Her album was a source of comfort, a soundtrack to my days spent getting lost on campus, trying to make friends, and forgetting where I had placed my PennCard. Be the Cowboy is an album about being vulnerable, independent, and anxious, and I don’t think that I could have discovered it at a better time. Although it’s been only a semester since my nonstop listening of the album, I sense that it will become one of those albums that I listen back on and be flooded with the memories and emotions tied to it. What makes “Nobody” so special to me is the irony. Mitski takes a disco beat and for a moment you feel like that this deep and dark musician has given us a reprieve, a dance track, but then she layers lyrics about alienation and loneliness on top. In a way I found it representative of my first few month of college. Newfound freedom and fun, paired with anxieties and feelings of loneliness. Mitski begins with the lines “My God, I’m so lonely / So I open the window / To hear sounds of people.” It’s words that I think everyone has

experienced: when you're surrounded by people yet still feel a sense of loneliness. You feel that something is missing. I’ve begun to realize that, with the independence of young adulthood, I’ll always be missing someone. Having two homes means I’ll always be feeling some sort of homesickness. I think that in a sense I’ll always feel a bit lonely or lacking wherever I go, but I’ve come to accept it. In the second verse, Mitski sings, “I’ve been big and small/ And big and small/ And big and small again/ And still nobody wants me.” These words are not a call for pity, but rather a declaration of self–empowerment. At the end of the day, the only person who will be there to handle all of our highs and lows are ourselves. I remind myself that I have to recognize my small successes. At the end of the day no one will congratulate me for making it to all my classes on time and remembering to brush my teeth. But, it’s okay to celebrate myself for getting both the big and little things done. Independence is hard, so be easy on yourself.

"Love Strong" by Moon Boots PAUL LITWIN

“Love Strong,” by Brooklyn DJ Moon Boots, is forever, in my youthful mind, a song of escapism and optimism. Boston, especially during the long winters, is not always a hospitable and warm place in which to grow up. Between November and March, you’re thrilled if the temperatures hit over 50 degrees, and more often than not, it’d be dark outside when you left for school and dark outside when you got out. Additionally, throughout my junior year I was often in school from 8 a.m. until 7 p.m. or so, participating in extracurricular activities, clubs, and doing homework. All these factors make for a pretty mundane and

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displeasing high school experience, and when coupled with significant medical and personal issues, by my sophomore year in high school I was pretty ready to get away. That’s where “Love Strong” came in. I don’t think it has profound lyrics, or meaningful connotations, but “Love Strong” was my first introduction to nu–disco, a breezy and uplifting genre that musically took me to a place very far from home. “Love Strong” was my introduction to Moon Boots, a talented producer with a knack for creating carefree music crafted with moving vocals and pleasant, if standard, lyrics. But to me, “Love Strong” was more than carefree disco. It was warmth, it was sun, it was nightlife, and it was something more than my daily routine. Britt Julious of Pitchfork described the song’s hook as “late–night dance floor battle cry," but to me the song was as much about a daytime atmosphere as it was about nighttime energy. Moon Boots has a unique gift for producing shining soundscapes full of soul and energy, and “Love Strong” is the epitome of the rhythm he is capable of creating. Rather than making me jealous, “Love Strong” was a reminder that tough times are temporary. Throughout much of my time in high school, I struggled with health concerns, and while it was nothing life– threatening, it was incredibly overwhelming and dismaying. Music was my biggest escape, a reminder that there are other lives to live and that positivity does nothing but help. I can now confidently say that Moon Boots is one of my five favorite artists of all time. His ability to identify a melody and complement vocals with it has been, in my opinion, unparalleled among other recent nu–disco artists. In contrast to my memories of listening to Chance the Rapper’s Acid Rap or Calvin Harris’

“Sweet Nothing” during warm summers with friends, “Love Strong” truly felt like my escape and my memory. While I still have personal attachments to those other pieces of music, my attachment to "Love Strong" was, and is, entirely individualistic. I’d like to think that since those high school days, the optimism of there being a better life out there has been fulfilled to some extent. I will always have fond memories of “Love Strong,” both as a great musical track, and as an escapist song with promises of optimism going forward. I’ve made some amazing memories since coming to Penn, and I’ve had some incredible life experiences, which myself from five years ago certainly would not have foreseen.

“Same Drugs” by Chance the Rapper TERESA XIE

Growing up on the South Side of Chicago, Chance the Rapper’s presence has always flooded my memories. Chance is like a day well spent sunbathing by the lake. He is a bonfire with my closest friends. He is a carefree trip speeding down Lake Shore Drive. Chance the Rapper was an artist we all rallied behind, because even as he was making it big, he would always remember to come back to Chicago, his home where it all began. “Same Drugs” came out at end of my sophomore year in high school, with the release of Chance’s album, Coloring Book. During that time, I was in the midst of a strange period in my life, unsure of who I was or what to label this point in my teenage experience. Even if it was just for a moment, the vibrant energy of Coloring Book was contagious. Track after track, the promise of a sunny future seemed closer and closer. But for “Same Drugs,” the peculiarity of this song was rooted in the way it alluded to an inevitable sadness that I

couldn’t quite put a finger on at the time. Now, I know it is a bittersweet sentiment to growing apart, to growing up, and to the reluctance that comes with it. The importance of “Same Drugs” lies in the way it evolves over time. I’ve heard Chance perform the song live twice. The first was at Magnificent Coloring day, at the beginning of my junior year, and once at Lollapalooza, right before my senior year. That first time, I went with a group of friends, in awe of the fact that U.S. Cellular Field looked like a celebration of colors, of the city, and of music. When Chance started playing the first notes of “Same Drugs,” it elongated the naivety of the moment, making it feel as if it could slip away at any time. By the time I found myself alone in the middle of a crowd at Lollapalooza a year later, the lyrics “We don't do the same drugs no more,” symbolized something different. I was no longer standing in awe, but coping with letting go of a person that used to be important to me. Between those two performances, I had evolved, and the song had evolved with me. It would evolve again, as I waved goodbye to the first of my friends leaving for college, and when I stepped into my old bedroom for the first time in three months over Thanksgiving break, the calendar hovering over my desk still turned to August. “Same Drugs” is an anthem to the acceptance that things will never be the same. For me, this realization manifested itself in different ways: Through the loss of a friend, the shift in dynamics of relationships, the end of high school, the beginning of college. It serves as a reminder of the way life constantly moves, whether we’re ready for it or not, leaving us to wonder about time exactly as the lyrics do: "Where did you go?"


'The Curse of La Llorona' Simplifies Horrifying Folklore into a Formulaic Franchise This legendary Mexican folktale deserved so much better.

Calista Lopez Growing up, I wasn't plagued by boogeymen. Instead I was haunted by story of the legendary La Llorona, the Weeping Woman. Her story is ancient and dates back hundreds of years, so naturally, it varies. But I always knew it as follows: Before she was La Llorona, Maria was a young, beautiful and happy wife to a rich businessman. As their two sons grow, Maria's husband began to travel more and grew disillusioned with her. Whenever her husband would visit, he would spend much of his time with his sons, and hardly paid any attention to Maria. Angry and confused, Maria blamed her children for her husband's actions and, in a fit of rage, drowned them in a nearby river. Immediately regretting her actions, Maria threw herself in the river. Her ghost, unable to cross over into the afterlife, weeps constantly for her children and kidnaps and drowns any child she comes across. The tale has been told to many, including myself, to keep children indoors, to keep safe from real dangers. In short—this is a terrifying story. I'm an adult now, and I know that ghosts, like La Llorona, don't actually exist. But that didn't stop me from being petrified to watch this movie. As I sat to start the film, I couldn't help but feel like my six–year old self again hearing about the Weeping Woman for the first time. Unfortunately, The Curse of La Llorona hardly did anything to honor the Mexican legend. Instead, this film relied on tacky jump–scares and a formulaic plot that failed to

take advantage of the tragic origin story of La Llorona. The film begins in Mexico in 1673 with an image of two small boys playing in a field with their parents. In a flash, all of the family, except one son, remains. He wanders to a nearby river where he sees his mother drowning his brother. He attempts to flee, but fails, as his mother grabs his wrist and appears to drown him as well. This is the only reference to the origins of La Llorona, and it barely lasts a minute. This is my biggest problem with the movie—it missed so many opportunities to tap into La Llorona's potential. There is so much to be done with the idea of a mother who takes the lives of her own children because of their father's neglect. Then there's the added supernatural element, as the mother's ghost now preys on children in the real world, in a haze of confusion, regret, and sadness. It's scary, but it's also sad. La Llorona is a complicated and bone–chilling character, and the filmmakers' decision to give her story a minute of screen time is their biggest fault. The rest of the film is set in 1970s Los Angeles and follows social worker Anna Tate–Garcia (Linda Cardellini) and her two children, Chris and Sam. Anna ignores the warnings of Patricia Alvarez (Patricia Velasquez), whose two sons were drowned in a river by the ghost, La Llorona. Anna and her kids are then forced to accept the truth and enlist the help of a priest, Father Perez (Tony Amendola), to protect Chris and Sam.

Many viewers found issue in the Tate–Garcia family. Their only claim to Latinidad is their last name, attributed to a deceased Latino father. While I initially found it to be problematic, I was willing to look past it. A Latinx family would already know about the folktale, and people are naturally scared by the unknown—it makes sense that the family shouldn't know about La Llorona. But what is inexcusable is the formulaic feel of the film and its inability to scare even the most scare–able of audiences. This film is another installment in the popular

Photo Courtesy of Warner Bros. Pictures

Conjuring universe—and it definitely feels like it. Aside from brief references to La Llorona, the rest of the film is identical to any other ghost story, in terms of plot. The same formula (family is warned of ghosts, family is in denial, family meets ghosts, family defeats ghosts) is deployed here, and it is as boring and repetitive as it sounds. In terms of scariness, La Llorona is creepy, clad in a long white dress and veil, with yellow eyes and tears of blood on her face. There are some scenes where she suddenly grabs Sam and Chris by the wrists, and leaves burn

marks on them that'll make

you jump a little. But that's the thing—this movie is all surprises and jump–scares. Though terrified, I was initially excited for this movie. It's not too often that I get to see something so relatable and close to home represented on screen as a big budget film. I was prepared to enjoy a movie that explored the world of Latinx folklore . But instead I got an underwhelming, recycled "horror" film that neglected La Llorona and treated her like a garden–variety ghost in a long white dress—instead of the complex, frightening, and flawed mother that she truly is.


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Anime 101: Trying It Out What’s popular and what’s worth your time. Shannon Zhang Anime has been granted its boom in the West. Shows and movies that might've only been found on Cartoon Network in the early 2000s, and only watched by nerdy kids, have weaved their way into mainstream culture—in lyric references, on Kim K’s Instagram, and even at the Oscars. What’s all the talk about? And why do so many rappers rap about going “Super Saiyan?” If you’ve been wanting to get into anime, the huge array of options available (thanks to online streaming) makes it daunting to choose a starting point. Here’s an overview of what’s popular, what’s worth your time, and where you can find some shows to help you get started, whether you’re a

fan of thrillers or rom–coms. The Big Three: One Piece, Naruto, and Bleach Lovingly dubbed “the big three” for their massive success and long–time popularity, One Piece, Naruto, and Bleach have dominated the action anime genre for nearly two decades. One Piece follows a group of pirates on their search for an unknown treasure, Naruto details the life of an ostracized ninja, and Bleach follows a young adult who is suddenly forced to become a death god. All three boast hundreds of 20– minute episodes aired over many fans’ entire childhoods, and only Bleach has reached

a full conclusion. However, due to directorial and funding changes over time, each show’s quality can range from incredible to downright awful depending on which set of episodes you might choose to watch. If you’re in the mood for long action sequences and you’ve got an absurd amount of time on your hands, give any of these three a shot. But if you’re looking for your first anime, steer clear from the big three. Excessively long and admittedly sometimes boring, these behemoths are only worth your attention if you know your anime niche, and if that niche revolves around the power of friendship. One Piece is streaming on Crunchyroll, and Naruto and


Bleach are streaming on Netflix. Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood

Instead of diving into the deep end with the big three, FMA:B is a shorter variation of the fantasy action genre. The show follows two brothers who are severely injured after a failed transmutation and begin searching for a way to fix their bodies. A perfect blend of tragedy, diverse characters, and social and political commentary, FMA:B is a streamlined anime that showcases the peak of what storytelling in anime can be in less than 100 episodes. If you like FMA:B, you might find merit in checking out the big three. Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood is streaming on Netflix. From Me to You (Kimi ni todoke) If you’re less of an action fan, From Me to You is an appropriate introduction to anime romance and slice–of– life. The show follows a shy girl who comes out of her shell with the help of a kind, extroverted boy. Romance in anime can be touchy—harems and unnecessary fan service saturate the genre, and finding respectable, innovative stories in a sea of money– grabbing, identical shows is difficult. From Me to You falls into the traps of many anime romance tropes, including the introverted girl/popular guy dynamic and lots of cherry blossoms, but it’s sweet overall—and a solid introduction to what romance in anime largely looks like. From Me to You is streaming on Crunchyroll. Dragon Pilot: Hisone and Masotan

The most recent anime of this compilation to air, and the best representation of the current evolution of anime, is Dragon Pilot: Hisone and Masotan. Hisone is chosen to be the pilot of a dragon and struggles with her newfound emotional responsibilities. Visually, the show is unique, bold, and very round—a blend of the overly cute, regurgitated facial features of Kyoto Animation and the bright colors of Mob Psycho 100. Heavily character–driven and equal parts heartstring–tugger and cool dragons, Hisone and Masotan is a well–rounded presentation of anime as a whole. Dragon Pilot: Hisone and Masotan is streaming on Netflix. Honorable mentions: Dragon Ball: Where “Super Saiyan” comes from. Dragon Ball follows Son Goku as he searches for the seven Dragon Balls, which grant a wish when brought together. A 35– year–old franchise, Dragon Ball is similar to the big three and is a daunting series with a lot of lore—sure to please any fan of dramatic fight scenes, but difficult to estimate enjoyment levels of if you’ve never seen an action anime before. Available on Hulu and Amazon Prime. Cowboy Bebop: Slated for a Netflix live–action show, Cowboy Bebop follows a group of bounty hunters as they make their way across different planets. The show is targeted towards an adult audience, and boasts a beautiful soundtrack on top of a mature, contemplative plot. And it’s episodic, so you can pick it up from any point you’d like. Available on Hulu and Amazon Prime. This list in no way fully encompasses all anime genres, but it's a start—and there's a lot more out there if you're still interested.


'In the Heights' and the Movie Musical

Movie musicals have received mixed reviews lately—will Lin–Manuel Miranda's latest film adaptation run into the same issues? Anna Collins On April 20, the majority of the cast of Lin–Manuel Miranda's upcoming In the Heights film was released. Miranda, famous for Hamilton, wrote In The Heights in 1999 to critical acclaim, and after the success of Hamilton, translating his only other full–length musical becomes a clearly beneficial move. The adaptation of his second most famous work raises the question of the translation of stage musical onto the screen. The tradition of adapting Broadway musicals into film was popularized during the 1960’s, most famously producing My Fair Lady (1964) and West Side Story (1961). The era was transformative for the musical with the introduction of songs as an element of plot, rather than entirely non–diegetic music. These two films were great successes,

but represent an issue which has been plaguing movie musicals ever since: actors. What exactly makes a good movie musical? There is not a simple answer: musicals can be adapted faithfully and still be bad (Cabaret) or adapted with edits and still be fantastic (Chicago). The question becomes one of faithfulness not to the original production but to the feeling of musical theater. Musical theater itself is an easily–ridiculed art form: actors are expected to perform the complexities of their character, then told to break out into song and dance. The origin of musical theater consists of characters breaking out into song for mere entertainment purposes. The only way a production can succeed is if it leans into the art. The requirement for earnestness holds true for the movie musical. Lately, the

movie musical has been falling into the hands of directors and creators who care little for the genre and pursue the art form for fame. The Greatest Showman, scored by Pasek and Paul of Dear Evan Hansen, lacks the elements of true musical theater. Grand musical numbers read flat and quieter songs lack emotion. Such a conundrum is not special to The Greatest Showman; Les Miserables faced similar criticisms, and La La Land was a divisive movie musical with uninspired singing, too. The issue with all of these films is that they don’t fully understand what makes the musical so good, which is its shameless heart. The best adaptations of musicals are ones which lean into the musical number style of the form; Chicago, which won the Best Picture Oscar in

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2003, leans into the passion and dramatics of its numbers. What does this have to do with In the Heights? As a musical, Miranda’s hit works beautifully on–stage, with the New York setting overwhelming the wide set. Often, it feels like an active city with action filling the stage. How this will be translated into film remains tricky. Its cast is filled with some singers, some actors, and the talented stage actor An-

thony Ramos—who played John Laurens in Miranda’s Hamilton on Broadway. Most of the chosen actors have not done musical theater before. Adapting a stage musical on– screen takes a careful hand and an appreciation for the art form. Miranda himself is involved in the production process, which is a good sign. As for the earnestness of the film, audiences will simply have to wait and see.

Live music • Film • Dance • Theater Art Education • Community

Vermont’s Bread and Puppet Theatre presents Diagonal Life: Theory and Praxis

May 2 @ 8pm May 3 @ 8pm May 4 @ 8pm May 5 @ 3pm We inhabitants of Western modernity are no strangers to verticality, from the architecture of our cities, to the "ladder(s) of success" we're expected to scale, to the incessant wakefulness required of us, postponing the horizontal pleasures of sleep. Bread and Puppet's "Diagonal Life" presents the diagonal as a promising mode for opposition to the dominating verticality of our civilization. Diagonal Life brings all the bewildering, beguiling, and downright funny possibilities and implications of diagonality to life with song, dance, magic, mechanism, and stunning cardboard and paper maché puppets painted in Peter Schumann's exuberant, slapdash expressionist style. Show runs 60 minutes and will be followed by the serving of bread and aioli, plus cheap art from the Bread & Puppet Press. Tickets at the door are $10–20 sliding scale ($5 for kids) with no one turned away.

As an alcohol-free/smoke-free venue, The Rotunda provides an invaluable social alternative for all ages.

4014 Walnut •

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The exhibit features some of the earliest photographs ever taken. Tara O'Brien

After walking up a long, gray path into the spacious, high– ceilinged lobby of the Barnes Foundation, you are quickly immersed in 19th century photography—this is the current exhibition, From Today,

Painting is Dead: Early Photography in Britain and France, which will run until May 12. This exhibit features works from over sixty pioneer photographers, including Felice Beato, Roger Fenton, Julia Margaret Cameron, Félix Nadar, Gustave Le Gray, ÉtienneJules Marey, and William Henry Fox Talbot. The collection includes about 250 photographs from the mid–19th century, a time that was transforming the worlds of painting and photography.

The title of this exhibition is said to come from Paul Delaroche, a prominent French painter. When Delaroche first saw a photograph, he exclaimed “From today, painting is dead!” This exclamation encapsulates the anxiety that many painters felt about the onset of photography as an artistic medium. Many painters wondered whether or not photography was destined to replace painting. Before photography, paintings were the medium used to capture things like portraits and historical moments. Rather than replacing painting, photography created the opportunity for painting to become something else. It led to wonderful advancements in

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Image © The Barnes Foundation. Photo: Jack Ramsdale.

the world of painting, like impressionism and post–impressionism. Painting was no longer the only means of depicting real life, so it took different forms, which comprise many of the magnificent pieces of artwork that we admire today. While it may seem overwhelming to visit both the permanent and current exhibits at the Barnes—as the permanent collection alone spans over two floors and more than twenty rooms—it is well worth it. The permanent exhibit is home to many types of works, from fine arts and fine paintings to more artisan and craft work, including impressionist and post impressionist works, early modernist paintings, African masks, tools, sculptures, and almost 900 pieces of French metal work. There are even classrooms offering "orientation talks" at the top of every hour. The first photography exhibit at the Barnes was displayed in 2016, called Live and Life Will Give You Pictures: Masterworks of French Photography, 1890–1950.

Both photography exhibitions have been lent by photography collectors Judy Hochberg and Michael Mattis, who have an unimaginable collection from some of the very first photographs to almost current time. While the Barnes Foundation is impressive on its own, the current photography exhibition is even more compelling because of its ties to Penn. As part of the 2018 SpiegelWilks Curatorial Seminar "Ars Moriendi: Life and Death in Early Photography," Penn professor Aaron Levy and Barnes Foundation president Thom Collins teamed up to make the exhibit an educational venture. Students in the class helped to create some of the material for the exhibition. On the way out of the exhibit, a woman turned to her husband and exclaimed, “We’ve got less than a half hour. I want to make sure we caught everything ... there might be another spot over there!” Set a day aside to visit the Barnes Foundation and take in some of the earliest works of photography ever recorded.

wednesday, may 1st

7–8 pm • McClelland south Lounge quad

in the

Come take a break from studying and listen to Ware’s Music Fellow, Ruby Lee, as she plays live piano pieces from Howl’s Moving Castle, Yiruma, and more, with delicious food from Shake Shack and Federal Donuts! You must RSVP for this event by scanning the QR code or visiting the website below:

presented by: Ware College House

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On breaking boundaries in the literary industry, being the executive director of Philly's Asian Arts Initiative, and bringing niche art to the mainstream Josephine Cheng Anne Ishii is not your typical literary translator or editor. Growing up in an Asian–American community, she was heavily influenced by her heritage and sought to maintain that con-

nection through language. Her education consisted of French throughout college, then Japanese literature in grad school. After brief stints at a Japanese translating start–up and in ven-

ture consulting and advertising upon graduation, Ishii eventually found her calling in translating and editing gay erotic manga and founded Massive, a creative agency for feminist and queer

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art, comics, and fashion with business partner Graham Kolbeins in 2013. Now, as executive director of the Asian Arts Initiative, "a multi–disciplinary and community-based arts center in Philadelphia," she works on exhibitions, performances, and art projects in local communities. While Ishii is known for her multiple translations of gay erotica, she is most famous for her work on "Passion of Gengoroh Tagame", a compilation of ten English editions of manga artist Gengoroh Tagame's short stories. A world–renowned writer in gay comics who specializes in gay pornography and BDSM, Tagame's work had previously long been relegated to the American underground, where fans have shared foreign language editions of his work. Containing works ranging from the late 1990s to 2012, with the latest piece being an original story written by Tagame as his first endeavor to write directly for an English reader, the translations of "Passion of Gengoroh Tagame" opened the doors for American audiences to access the works of one of the most internationally well known gay manga writers. Ishii notes that she first delved into gay erotica due to her "fascination with the male–on–male gaze", particularly in the context of patriarchal Japan, and felt that "it became a natural extension to just start translating and working on it." It wasn't until Ishii delved into gay porn that she uncovered an abundance of examples of male–on–male gaze and a medium wherein the male body was placed front and center. Her interest in gay erotica was further piqued upon discovering the level of craftsmanship in artists, such as Tagame's, work. She notes, "I was completely blown away

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by how good it was ... it's really astonishing to me how beautiful the artwork is, considering that in the grand scheme of media, porn is usually looked upon as a very low form of art." When it comes to discovering passion as a college student, Ishii says to "travel in your early years as much as possible. Because that's basically how I also came across gay erotica." Within the niche of gay erotica manga itself, Ishii also works to promote non–mainstream forms. Massive, an accessory and apparel brand Ishii co–founded in 2013, places particular emphasis on body positivity and the inclusion of male figures who do not configure into traditional standards of male beauty. "One of our iconic designs is the 'Best Couple', the two huge guys facing off each other." "Best Couple" features an ideal pair of "gachimuchi", or "muscle–chubby" hunks—they are corpulent, buff, and just like the brand's namesake, massive—but no less attractive for it. Ishii continues, "the incentive was to show that there's a place for fat Asians." Ishii's path has also been somewhat criticized by members of the gay community. Being a queer Japanese woman herself, she has been questioned in the past for not being a member of the community she represents, in regards to whether or not she has the right to her work when her own experiences are not representative of her audience. Ishii notes that her own tolerance for the appropriation of gay art for mainstream audiences is quite high. Despite criticism, though, Ishii has made leaps and bounds in introducing gay erotica and art beyond the limits of its traditional audience.


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