Daily Herald the Brown
vol. cxlv, no. 77 | Friday, September 24, 2010| Serving the community daily since 1891
Historic clash set for Brown Stadium tomorrow 2014 boasts By Ethan McCoy Contributing Writer
At 6 p.m. Saturday, the sun will start to set over Providence, but historic Brown Stadium will be lighting up. For the first time, the Bears will host a night game at its 85-year-old stadium, as they take on Harvard in a crucial Ivy League matchup. Temporary lights have been installed for the special occasion.
support for students interested in law school,” Dean of the College Katherine Bergeron wrote in a Sept. 7 e-mail to students. The demand for pre-professional advising has been increasing every year, said Stephen Lassonde, deputy dean of the College. “We don’t want all of the responsibility on one person,” Lassonde said, pointing out that the Office of the Dean of the College sends out continued on page 2
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Brown players are well aware of the historical significance of Saturday’s game. “Given our program’s vast history and all the tremendous individuals who have played here, it is really special to be able to partake in something that has never been Jonathan Bateman / Herald file photo
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At Brown’s first home night game, the football team will look to avenge last year’s 24-21 loss to Harvard.
Waldrop on New dean directs advising programs writing and the alphabet By Ashley Aydin Senior Staff Writer
Students and faculty packed into McCormack Family Theater Thursday evening for a special poetry reading by Keith Waldrop, professor of literar y arts. “The more we look at his poems, the more the enchantment,” said Forrest Gander, professor of literar y arts and comparative literature, as he introduced Waldrop to the anxiously-awaiting audience.
ARTS & CULTURE Waldrop is the winner of the 2009 National Book Award for poetr y for his book “Transcendental Studies: A Trilogy,” which includes three poem sequences: “Shipwreck in Haven,” “Falling in Love through a Description” and “The Plummet of Vitruvius,” according to the Literary Arts Department’s website. He is also the author of other books including “The House Seen from Nowhere” and “Several Gravities.” Though he is listed as Bernard Waldrop in the Brown director y, Waldrop goes by the name of “Keith,” which he found in a book called “What to
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News.....1–2 Sports.......3 Ar ts.........4 Editorial.....6 Opinion......7 Today.........8
George Vassilev stepped into the position of assistant dean and director of pre-professional advising Sept. 21. He is currently responsible for advising students and alums applying to medical and law school. Vassilev will also be involved in creating a program for prospective business school applicants. Brown does not currently have an advising program for students or alums seek-
ing a master’s in business administration. But this new program will not begin until the 2011-12 academic year at the earliest, Vassilev said. In his new post, Vassilev has taken on responsibilities previously held by Andrew Simmons, now director of the Career Development Center. Simmons will continue to collaborate with Vassilev to develop programming for Brown’s pre-medical advising. Vassilev will also be working with other pre-law advisers to “build our
By Alexandra Ulmer Senior Staff Writer
Black enrollment swelled to 144 students in the class of 2014 — more than in any past cohort. This is chiefly due to boosted recruitment efforts following a significant dip in the group’s matriculation in the class of 2013, according to the Admission Office. “We’re up about 60 percent from last year in terms of AfricanAmericans enrolling,” said Dean of Admission Jim Miller ’73. “It’s the most diverse class we’ve ever had in history.” This spike is the result of a University effort to widen the pool of applicants after 93 black students, a comparatively low figure, enrolled in the class of 2013. Over the past 35 years, the highest number of black students in one class was 116, according to Miller. “There has been a great deal of progress,” said Director of Institutional Diversity Valerie Wilson. “It’s part of a very aggressive and specific strategy.” The University targeted high schools with a large number of would-be first-generation university graduates, employed minority recruitment interns and joined the QuestBridge consortium, a program that identifies and awards scholarships to promis-
By Ben Kutner Contributing Writer
most black students
Computer continues to attract users statewide By Alex Bell Senior Staff Writer
Almost a year after its opening last November, Brown’s supercomputer is already being put to use by about 200 researchers, according to Director of the Center for Computation and Visualization Jan Hesthaven. “We had sort of planned a big PR spiel in the fall, but I’m actually a little worried about doing it now,” due to the already large amount of interest, Hesthaven said. He estimated about two-thirds of the users are looking into what the supercomputer can do for their research, while the other third are heavier users. “In the last month and a half, the number of users has really grown very dramatically, and we see a lot
of users coming in and wanting to try it out to see if this is something they can use in their research,” Hesthaven said. “They’re taking advantage of the fact that 200 is still a relatively low number, so it’s a big playground, and they’re getting a lot of work done.” Professors, graduate students, postdoctoral students and a few companies — which must pay a small fee for use of the computer — make up the bulk of the users, Hesthaven said. He said he hopes to expand the supercomputer’s potential throughout the next year using grants like this September’s $20 million Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research grant, from the continued on page 2
Alex Bell / Herald
Brown’s Center for Computation and Visualization near the corner of Brook and George Streets is home to the state’s only supercomputer.
Brown’s fight song goes widely unsung among students
Film festival fun at Avon and Cable Car Cinemas
Kurt Walters ’11 on the community beyond College Hill
195 Angell Street, Providence, Rhode Island
THE BROWN DAILY HERALD
C ampus N EWS
Outreach credited for higher black enrollment continued from page 1 ing, underprivileged students across the country. About 2,000 students, chiefly lowincome and of color, learned about Brown through QuestBridge, Miller said. “That gave us access to a really talented group of kids,” he said. “We do think QuestBridge had a great deal
to do with this increase.” In addition to broadening the pool of applicants, the admission office aimed to increase the number of black students who opted to enroll at Brown once admitted. The Inman Page Black Alumni Council was instrumental in the process, contacting both admitted students and their parents, Miller added. Their council’s efforts on campus
are continuing. The council is hosting a discussion titled “Getting Blacks to Brown: Increasing the Black Student Matriculation” this Saturday. For the class of 2014, Brown’s targeting strategy was more influential than the switch to the Common Application, which was credited with much of the boom in applications for the class of 2013, Miller said. “The Common App does eliminate road blocks or speed bumps for students who have less sophistication,” he said. “It’s a function of the Common App plus our outreach efforts.” These efforts have also involved current undergraduates such as Christopher Belcher ’11, who works as a minority recruitment intern. He highlighted the Third World Center’s programs, but added that Brown’s focus on reaching students in their community was crucial in boosting matriculation. “Many students can’t make it to campus to learn about Brown,” Belcher wrote in an e-mail to The Herald. “So we’ve made efforts to go to the students.”
Friday, September 24, 2010
Dean to expand ‘top-notch’ pre-professional advising continued from page 1 115 to 200 committee reference letters for pre-medical students each year. “It’s best to have four of us who share the responsibility. The deans, here, do everything.” “Clearly, we have a lot of need for top-notch advising,” Bergeron said. Before coming to Brown, Vassilev served as health professions program coordinator at the University of Chicago, where he organized and executed programs and information sessions for students interested in careers in health care. Vassilev arrived at Chicago only a month after its Chicago Careers in Health Professions program was created, and he played a large role in the development of their program, he said. “We were inventing the wheel, basically,” he said. While the advising team at Brown was interested in his previ-
ous experience in pre-professional advising, Vassilev said, they do not want to transplant the same programs he helped develop at Chicago. Vassilev was also president of Chicago’s International House, a residence hall for undergraduate and graduate students there. “He lived in residence with students, which made him very appealing to us,” Lassonde said. Vassilev, who speaks four languages, was born in Bulgaria and lived there until the age of 21. Vassilev was chosen for the position over the summer by a committee consisting of faculty members and students. “He did a great interview, and we were excited to offer him the job,” Bergeron said. The role of an adviser is ultimately to help students, Vassilev said. “I’m really thrilled to be here,” he said.
Researchers already using supercomputer continued from page 1 National Science Foundation. The grant was awarded to the University of Rhode Island to be applied to a research network of other schools, including Brown. “In that, there’s a substantial amount of money for what’s called bioinformatics — how to look at genes and DNA and how to understand what it all tells us,” Hesthaven said. “All that is very heavily computational, and a lot of that will be driven by what we have here.” Though the supercomputer was not an essential part of applying for grants like this one, Hesthaven said it strengthens the case for proposals at Brown and around Rhode Island that involve large amounts of data. As far as sharing with neighbors at URI and the Marine Biological Laboratory in Woods Hole, Mass., Hesthaven said Brown “will serve them to the extent that it’s possible, but there has to be priority given to
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the Brown community.” “Ultimately, it is a University resource,” Hesthaven said. Though there was some talk last year of allowing Rhode Island middle- and high-school students to use the supercomputer, Hesthaven said the center currently lacks the staffing capacity, but he would be excited to pursue the idea if funding became available. Hesthaven told The Herald earlier this year he hoped the supercomputer might make the TOP500 — a prestigious list that ranks the world’s 500 most powerful computing systems — but he said the center has not yet entered its supercomputer in the running. “It’s a little bit like preparing for a very large test,” Hesthaven said. To enter the competition, owners of computers around the world give their computers a standardized problem, and report how long their computers took to solve it. The top 500 entries are ranked every six
months. “The question is: Do we want to spend the resources to maybe make it onto the list? I actually do think that we would make the list, but it would still be a significant investment in time and resources,” Hesthaven said. Even if the supercomputer made it onto the list, Hesthaven said it would likely only be on for six months. Though Brown lays claim to the only supercomputer in Rhode Island, the University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth was awarded $200,000 by the NSF this June for its own supercomputing facility. But Hesthaven said having this other supercomputing cluster so close to Brown would not likely affect use of the University’s center. “That really is much more of a local resource that a small group of people would use,” Hesthaven said. “For them it makes a big difference, but in the bigger picture, it’s nothing unusual.”
SportsWeekend The Brown Daily Herald
FRIDay, SEPTEMBER 24, 2010 | Page 3
Bears and Crimson face off under the lights
continued from page 1 done before,” last week’s overtime hero Zach Tronti ’11 wrote in an e-mail to The Herald. “This is something we will be able to talk about for the rest of our lives.” While Harvard is accustomed to playing under the lights, the Crimson are just as excited to be a part of Brown Stadium’s first night game. “We really love the festive atmosphere,” said Head Coach Tim Murphy. “We’ve been playing under the lights for a while now, but it’s always fun. It gets everyone pumped up and it is just such a great time.” The game is set to headline Homecoming weekend, and a large turnout of Brown students and alums, in addition to a healthy fan section from Cambridge, is anticipated to fill the stands.
Not to be lost in all the history and hype is the impor tance of the game to the seasons of both teams. Both sides are conference title contenders coming off opening wins last Saturday. Brown defeated Stony Brook dramatically in double overtime while Har vard cruised past Holy Cross, 34-6. While these out-of-conference wins were important to both sides, the squads are looking at Saturday’s game as a must-win. “In order to win the Ivy League, you almost always have to run the table. Every league game is huge,” Tronti wrote. “Starting out 1-0 will give us a huge boost going forward in league play.” The fact that the first league game is against Harvard also gives the Bears incentive. “The Ivy League has no champi-
onship game so every Ivy League game is equally important in the win-loss column, but Harvard is always highlighted on the schedule. A win against Harvard would send the rest of the Ivy League a message,” wrote right guard Brian Ellixson ’11 in an e-mail to The Herald. The meeting will be the 110th between the two schools, and the rivals have accumulated a great respect for one another. “We know that Brown is going to be one of the most physical teams we go up against all year,” Murphy said. “We know that they are always going to be well-coached.” A key factor for the game will be the status of Brown quarterback Kyle Newhall-Caballero ’11. The starting QB missed last week’s game with a hand injury, but Joe Springer ’11 filled in capably to lead
‘Ever True’? Few know fight song’s words By Ashley McDonnell Assistant Sports Editor
Do you consider yourself “Ever True to Brown,” like the title of Brown’s fight song proclaims? And if you do, do you know the words? If not, you are part of the majority of students, according to Brown Band historian and trumpet player Wendy Kwartin ’11. “I’d say maybe 5 percent of the school knows it,” Kwartin said. She added that “the farther back you go, the more people know it. The newer people don’t go to games, so they don’t know it.” Cheerleader Brittany Jokl ’11 said she believes that about 40 percent of the student body knows the song — much more generous than Kwartin’s figure, but still the minority. This hasn’t always been the case. Back when it was customary for freshmen to wear beanies, they were not allowed to enter the Sharpe Refectory until they sang the fight song and alma mater. The “Vigilance Committee,” a group of upperclassmen, patrolled the campus to ensure that school spirit was high, said Pe-
ter Mackie ’59. Today, there are two versions of “Ever True to Brown” — the traditional, written by Donald Jackson 1909, and the “modern” band version usually played at games. Kwartin said she does not know when the band began singing the modern version. The traditional lyrics include the line, “You can’t outshine Brown men,” which the band has since changed. “The ‘and women!’ added in after ‘Brown men’ was added in the late ’60s, after the band became co-ed,” Kwartin said. The students who actually do know the song “know a mix of the two” versions, Kwartin said. “Some
people shout ‘Ki! Yi! Yi!’ because they like that more than ‘rye and a whiskey dry.’ ” “I only vaguely know the modern one,” Jokl admitted. She said the cheerleaders learn the traditional lyrics because knowing the lyrics helps the squad stay on beat during the song. The lyrics and recordings of both versions can be found on the band’s website, students.brown.edu/band. The Brown football team will play its first-ever night game against Harvard Saturday at 6 p.m. The band will teach the song to students who come to the game, according to Kwartin. “We play it whenever we score, so hopefully you’ll be hearing it a lot.”
Bruno to victory. Newhall-Caballero practiced this week, and is expected back under center Saturday night. On the other side of the ball, the Crimson offense will be led by 24-year-old quarterback Andrew Hatch, who notably started three games for SEC giants Louisiana State in 2008 before transferring to Harvard. Hatch’s experience and intelligence were on display last
week as he threw for 276 yards and three touchdowns without turning the ball over once. The Bears are hungry to get on the field Saturday for a memorable game that will certainly go down in Brown football history. “It’s very exciting and it’s going to be a great atmosphere,” Ellixson wrote, “but it’ll only be significant if we win the game.”
Arts & Culture The Brown Daily Herald
Friday, September 24, 2010| Page 4
‘Enchantment’ at Waldrop reading continued from page 1
Elise Merchant / Herald file photo
Films including “El Ultimo Guion (The Last Script),” “La verguenza (Shame),” “La Paloma (The Dove),” and a series of animated shorts are showing at the Cable Car Cinema from Sept. 18-25 as part of the New England Festival of Ibero American Cinema.
Film fest spotlights Ibero America By Margaret Yi Contributing Writer
A year-long collaboration between staff and students brings the first edition of the New England Festival of Ibero American Cinema to campus this week. The festival features a variety of films, documentaries and short movies from directors around the world. The festival is being held at the Avon and Cable Car Cinemas Sept. 18–25. It also offers discussion panels and meet-and-greets with filmmakers, actors and film professors, hosted in the Watson Institute and List Art Center. Yale, Harvard and the College of William and Mary will also screen films from the festival in the upcoming week. The festival is directed by Jose Torrealba, who is also the outreach coordinator for the Center for Latin American and Caribbean Studies at Watson. The Departments of Hispanic Studies and Portuguese and Brazilian Studies are sponsors of the event as well. Ibero America refers to the region encompassing the Spanish- and Portuguese-speaking countries of Central and South America, as well as Spain and Portugal. By featuring films from these areas, the organizers sought to promote Hispanic culture and foster understanding of Hispanic and Latino countries. This year’s film selections, subtitled in English, explore not only well-known social issues in Ibero American countries, but also the daily human situations people in those countries face, Torrealba said. The lineup features well-known films, such as “Celda 211 (Cell 211).” This film from Spanish director Daniel Monzon has won numerous Goya Awards — a Spanish award comparable to the Oscars — including Best Picture and Best Director. The film
details the survival of a guard during a prison riot, a situation that soon leads to political strife and widespread violence in the Basque community. The festival is also screening “Contracorriente (Undertow),” the debut work of director Javier Fuentes-Leon. The film, which won awards at the 2010 Sundance Film Festival, is a fantasy ghost story about Miguel, a married fisherman in Peru who has an affair with another man. When his lover dies in an accident, Miguel is pressured to reveal his sexuality to his religious and conservative village. Also featured at the festival is “Norteado (Northless),” a film from Mexico and Spain that details the attempts of Andres, a man from Mexico, as he tries to cross the border into the United States. The film is both comedic and serious, as it explores the economic, geographical and cultural disparities between the U.S. and Mexico. Andres is faced with a painful dilemma as he tries to let go of his past and look forward to the future with his wife and children in the United States. The festival also presents several documentaries, such as “Nombre Secreto: Mariposas (Codename: Butterflies).” The documentary is the first to chronicle the lives of the Mirabal sisters, who were executed for opposing the dictatorship of Rafael Leonidas Trujillo Molina in the Dominican Republic. A panel discussion followed the film’s Sunday screening with director Cecilia Domeyko and Dona Dede Mirabal, the sole surviving Mirabal sister. “It was an incredible experience to actually learn about a country’s history from a person who lived through that time,” said Alejandro Vertiz ’14, a volunteer for the film festival. The organizers intended the festival to be an enriching educational experience, Torrealba said. “I real-
ized more and more how film is an intrinsic part of the academic world here,” he said. The organizers also hoped to involve the greater Providence community and to foster connections with the foreign filmmakers, he added. Torrealba said the festival is unique among university film festivals because it awards cash prizes. A jury will determine the first-place winners for “emerging filmaker for a feature film,” documentary and short film categories. Torrealba said he hopes that cash prizes will financially endow and encourage directors, especially amateur ones, to continue filmmaking. Torrealba and his team of Brown staff and graduate and undergraduate students began organizing the event in January of this year. The process involved screening a number of films from Hispanic and Latino countries around the world. A jury of five then narrowed the films down to those now presented at the festival. Torrealba said that while organizing the event was exhausting and overwhelming, he is excited for another festival next year. “It’s a great opportunity to be exposed to what’s going on in Latin American, Spanish and Portuguese culture,” said Esther Hernandez-Medina GS, who joined the team in July. The festival has also received very positive feedback from Brown students. “I really appreciate that we can watch these kinds of movies here,” said Giulia Basile ’13, who discovered the festival through her Spanish class. “It’s a good excuse to watch a movie on a Tuesday night.” “I’m glad they’ve shown these movies,” said her classmate, Brittany Fidalgo ’13, adding that the films offered a “different perspective” on life in Spanish-speaking countries.
Name the Baby.” “‘Keith’ meant ‘wind.’ I thought it was curious,” he said. Thursday night’s reading is part of the Writers on Writing course and event series offered by the Literary Arts Department. Waldrop started the reading with some of his early poems and ended with newer ones, bringing smiles and laughter to the room with his amusing commentar y. He began with a piece from the late 1960s called “Conversion,” which explains his idea of change. “There was always someone tr ying to convert me one way or another,” Waldrop said, introducing the poem. “Reality is what does not change — i.e., reality is what does not exist,” he read, followed by laughter. Waldrop explained that, once he started writing, he soon began a habit of picking out books, choosing words and phrases from the text and erasing them. “I took a sentence ever y 100 pages,” he said. An example of this is one of his poems, “an abridgment on Tolstoy’s ‘War and Peace,’” he said. Waldrop read another one of his early poems, which was written as a letter to his wife, Rosmarie Waldrop. The poem was written in the 1970s while the Waldrops were separated in Europe. In the poem, Keith tells Rosmarie that they are both “fallen between two generations: one drunk, one stoned.” Waldrop also read from his award-winning “Transcendental Studies: A Trilogy.” “Transcendental Studies” uses “a great deal of other texts” in a collage style. “Flat. Dimmed. Everything tastes the same,” he read, from his poem “Apparent Motion.” A white page “turns red, the letters green.” Waldrop explained the start of “Transcendental Studies: A Trilogy,” which began when he was appointed director of the graduate program in literar y arts. He found that after several months, he “wasn’t writing anything,” he said. Waldrop said he decided to reser ve midnight as a time to write, a time when “Brown disappears.” This was a difficult task for Waldrop as he could not forget about Brown. “The more you tr y to forget something, the more it’s there,” he said. “So I got a batch of books. I took three books of three different kinds and put phrases down
from each,” he said. He then worked until he formed stanzas from these phrases, and when that become tiresome — which was “ver y soon,” he said — he would “take it, type it up and rearrange it alphabetically.” “I love the alphabet,” Waldrop said, in response to a student question about the order of “Transcendental Studies.” “I eventually had a book,” he said. The audience seemed to particularly enjoy these explanations of Waldrop’s creative process. “I usually like when he narrates how a poem came to be,” said Andrea Actis GS, a third-year graduate student in English. The Writers on Writing class operates in two-week cycles. During the first week, students read and discuss work by a writer, and the following week that writer presents his or her work to the class and answers questions. “We invited eight readers this year, only one — Keith Waldrop — is Brown faculty. Each time the class is taught we invite a faculty member from the Literar y Arts program to participate as a way to familiarize students with that professor’s work, potentially offering them a new view of that person,” Renee Gladman, assistant professor of literar y arts, wrote in an e-mail to The Herald. “The other seven we choose together, looking at the entire literar y field, looking for writers in various stages of their careers, who we think are exciting, with a lot to offer, whose books we think will give students something to walk away with,” she wrote. Waldrop ended the reading with ten shor t poems entitled “And Poems,” followed by a question and answer session. When questioned about the reoccurrence in his poetr y of words such as “gardens” and “walls,” Waldrop said the image of walls “is something that is important to me.” Students also questioned Waldrop on his methods of writing. “I always tell my students what Gertrude Stein said: ‘You need to write ever yday.’ I don’t do it, and I’m sure she didn’t do it either. Whatever I write is usually done after midnight, and I’m not sure why that is,” he said. Waldrop closed the discussion by explaining the change in his writing over time. “The early points were conversational poems. The poems sound as if I’m talking to someone in the same room,” he said. “The poems get somewhat formal after that.”
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Editorial & Letters The Brown Daily Herald
Page 6 | Friday, September 24, 2010
l e t t e r to t h e e d i to r
Tap water suits ‘lazy’ students To the Editor: In his column (“David Bowie loves Brown,” Sept. 9), Mike Johnson ’11 wrote about Beyond the Bottle, calling the initiative “insidious.” I call his column “uninformed.” Johnson’s university teems with “lazy college students” who drink only fluids found in plastic bottles. But hundreds of water fountains, sinks, and hydration stations dot our campus, and each member of the class of 2014 received a free stainlesssteel canteen from Brown Dining Services, complete with washing instructions. Johnson fears a staph outbreak brewing in unwashed canteens. If his bottle smells funny, he can clean it with warm, soapy water or distilled vinegar. If he’s too “lazy” to wash it, he can donate it — along with his washable, reusable clothes — to the Salvation Army and start dressing in single-use plastic sheets. Johnson calls Brown “an island of ‘Hydration Stations’ in a sea of bottled water culture,” despite recent campaigns in cities and campuses from Massachusetts to Australia to ensure universal access to clean, affordable tap water. In 2008, for the first time in a decade, Americans
bought less bottled water — 8.7 billion gallons, versus 8.8 billion in 2007. Were we too lazy to buy another 100 million gallons, or did we realize that the tap is better-regulated and thousands of times cheaper than the bottle? Brown students bought 30 percent less bottled water last year; decreased demand encouraged Dining Services to stop stocking bottled water at retail units. During Commencement, Johnson observes, we consume thousands of plastic water bottles. We appreciate Johnson’s concern and are delighted to announce that Beyond the Bottle and Dining Services are working toward bottle-free commencements. As for his worries about “siege or nuclear fallout,” Brown retains its emergency supply of bottled water — 51,000 bottles, each with a shelf life of two years. If the idea of water having a shelf life doesn’t turn Johnson off the bottle, and its unavailability on campus doesn’t deter him, he can keep walking to CVS to lug back a case of plastic bottles. Maybe Brown students aren’t so lazy, after all.
Jonathan Leibovic ’12 Sept. 23
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d i a m o n d s a n d c oa l It’s an end-of-summer clearance sale — all coal must go! Gotta make room for the winter shipment. Coal to the new coffee at the Blue Room. Next thing you know, it won’t even be blue anymore.
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A beefy coal to Better Burger for opening their doors in the same week that the Wriston Cow mysteriously fails to show at the farmers market. Coincidence? We think not. More coal to Morris Markovitz, who told us he “didn’t plan” his campaign for the General Assembly “or think about it.” Sounds like our experience in Russian Lit. Coal to the faculty member concerned about bad tenure reviews occurring “because you refused to sleep with” somebody. They really should stop having the meetings at FishCo.
Coal to the “maybe 5 percent” or “about 40 percent” of the school that knows the lyrics to Brown’s fight song. SDS doesn’t want to hear your war anthems. Coal to the Warwick Quaker who said of the Day of Peace, “It’s not just some hippie thing. This is real.” Hey, last time we checked, hippies are real, too. At least that’s what Mom told us, and she was right about Santa Claus. Coal to researchers at Women and Infants Hospital and Brown. We don’t think it’s safe to put all our eggs in one artificial ovary. Finally, a big fat coal to Harvard. We’ll see you under the lights (which are not powered by coal, we swear). Diamonds and Coal is written by The Herald’s staff.
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correction An article in the Sept. 17 Herald (“$1 million funds U.’s supercomp”) included quotes from Assistant Professor of Biology Casey Dunn that did not refer to the grant discussed in the article. The online version of the article has been updated with correct information. The Herald regrets the error.
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Opinions The Brown Daily Herald
Friday, September 24, 2010 | Page 7
From one lemming to another BY MIKE JOHNSON Opinions Columnist
Welcome to the recession. In just the three short weeks since we all arrived back on campus, we’ve seen an explosion of moneyrelated articles and opinions columns published in The Herald. Brown students are pinching their pennies, and whenever one slips through our collective fingers, we’re going to let you know about it. Most notably, Brown’s identity crisis as being not only an educational institution, but also an entity making forays into dining services and investment has been called into question, with Kshitij Lauria ’13 claiming that the University should adopt “the Unix philosophy of doing one thing and doing it well” (Refactoring the refectory, Sept. 16). It’s true; Brown has made some significant advances outside the area of education. The University has fed us, housed us and provided health insurance to those who don’t have their own. Brown has put forth a line of bottled water, sold books and slapped its brand all over the clothing of sports teams, selling merchandise to fans across the country. For shame, Brown! How can you sleep at night? While all of this is going on, the student body sleepwalks through its four-to-five years of undergraduate study, naively accepting everything it’s told by early morning emails and bulletins from the Deans. Or this is what some would have you believe —
we’re sheep, and we need to open our eyes before we follow each other off the ledge, or some metaphor I’ve heard. Lauria would like to see the Ratty shut down and reinvented as something akin to a food court, accepting individual payments via our meal plans, rather than taking meal credits for an all-you-care-to-eat buffet. He cites that football players are bigger, and therefore eat more food, and the rest of us shouldn’t “subsidize their upkeep.” I agree; I don’t care to subsidize vegetarianism, because my love of red meat is just
economics of the University, and I’m sure Liebling would agree with me that perhaps that should be changed. But I know that sometimes you need to spend money to make money, and that as high as our tuition may be, undergraduates are certainly not footing any significant portion of the bill. We’re fortunate enough to have had some really rich, really generous people donate money back to Brown to fund projects. The new athletic center is a long time coming. The OMAC, with all its charm, is a death trap. Our swimming pool was condemned.
I don’t care to subsidize vegetarianism, because my love of red meat is just too great to suffer them eating leaves and stuff that grows in the dirty, smelly earth any longer. too great to suffer them eating leaves and stuff that grows in the dirty, smelly earth any longer. But under the current system, I have to put up with the “Roots and Shoots” line, and have to walk past their righteous indignation whenever I want a grilled cheese. Simon Liebling ’12 argues that money should be a secondary concern in education (“Brown, Inc.”, Sept. 10), claiming that all this emphasis on research is pushing the humanities out of vogue at Brown, and that the University’s hunger to maximize “profit” is sullying our experience. Truthfully, I don’t know much about the
We need a safe place to work out, and for our athletics teams to train, because to be honest, we need to court more extremely rich, extremely nice alumni to donate more money to us, and they really like football. The new Creative Arts Center will finally provide Brown students with a space to sculpt, to paint, to write, to perform — all the creative pursuits currently homeless. We have more research labs than creative arts buildings on campus — not a tough trick, with zero creative arts buildings. As a writer, I usually hang out in Starbucks with my Apple laptop looking down my nose at every-
one else, but I realize that’s not everyone’s cup of grande macchiato. Most recently, Deniz Ilgen ’13 decried the state of undergraduate dorms, claiming that while living in buildings with history is cool, living in buildings we’re afraid will kill us is not (“Tradition: good or bad,” Sept. 17). At the risk of being self-serving and citing myself, this is an issue about which I have also raised some concern (“Home is where the heart is,” April 13). It’s curious that we pay all this money for room and board, and then again in damage fines, to see shabby rooms with crumbling walls. The crux of the matter is not the average Brown student’s propensity to complain. Collegiate cynicism is pretty widespread, and in the information age, we can find something to be angry about fairly quickly, and then tweet and post the night away. But the fact remains: Why are we here? Is it to fund the Brown University construct-a-thon? We’re here to learn. We’re here to question. We’re here to grow. It’s a good idea to expand the meal plan, perhaps striking a deal with Thayer Street businesses to use meal credits there. It’s a pretty good idea to have a little more common sense in how the University spends its money. It’s a wonderful idea to make dorms livable again. But, Brunonians, it’s even better to take a deep breath, and think about what you’re about to say. One thing I’ve learned at Brown is that no one is ever entirely right.
Mike Johnson ’11 celebrates the addition of grilled cheese to the Bistro line.
Off the Hill BY KURT WALTERS Opinions Columnist College Hill is nice. Really, it is. But I’m going to tell you that you should leave. What I mean is that, contrary to what you might expect, one of the best ways to make the most out of your years in college is to spend time away from campus. In fact, going out into the community and doing something you’re passionate about can be one of the most fulfilling and fun uses of your time in college. For example, my friend has made waves throughout the state by managing the political campaign of an upstart progressive candidate in Narragansett who managed to knock off a long-time incumbent. I’ve met a bunch of incredibly interesting and talented locals through skateboarding in Providence. And my old roommate even earned the chance to be a part of the team representing Providence at the National Poetry Slam in St. Paul after doing slam poetry at AS220 for years. The point is, it doesn’t really matter what you end up doing, so long as you like it. I realize there are a lot of hokey “make the most of your college experience” columns directed at freshmen at the beginning of each school year. I hope that this one can be useful to everyone from seniors on down — both now and once we enter the work-
force. “But wait!” you’re thinking. “Didn’t I work hard in high school to get into Brown, and don’t I pay more than $50,000 a year just for the privilege of being on College Hill?” It seems weird to use some of our four ever-shortening (since I’m a senior, trust me on this one) years we have at school to do things completely unrelated to Brown. It’s true, there are far more things to do at Brown than anyone ever could experience in
turn into a full-time job, relationships hit the rocks... Oh, and don’t get me started on the housing lottery. It can be incredibly relieving to be able to return to an area where all those stresses are simply irrelevant. It also helps every once in a while to remember that there is a real world out there. Being reminded that there are people whose life stories don’t involve “and then I went to an Ivy League school” definitely keeps things in perspective. Bombing a test will
Maybe if we got to know some native Rhode Islanders before making another joke about the Rhody accent or the more guido-inclined Pauly D clones hanging outside Spats, Rhode Islanders wouldn’t want to tax us into oblivion. four years — one would think we should try to max out our time on College Hill, right? Far from a waste of time, hours spent outside the Brown Bubble actually can complement and enhance the rest of your experience during your (at least) four years in Providence. One of the best parts about having a consistent commitment out in Rhody is that you can create a totally college-free area of your life. It’s great to have an escape away from all the stresses of college life. You’ll appreciate this when midterms and finals get crazy, extracurriculars try to
seem less like the end of the world when you interact with or help out someone who is struggling even with the cost of gas. Leaving the Hill can also help contextualize what you learn in the classroom and make it more relevant. Volunteering in politics can bring to life the lessons that seem overly abstract in your political science class. Likewise, giving your time by helping out at the hospital can both remind you why you decided to be pre-med in the first place and keep you from hurling your orgo textbook through the twelfth floor SciLi window
the night before a midterm. Furthermore, it pays dividends to find out what the community you live in is actually like. Maybe if we got to know some native Rhode Islanders before making another joke about the Rhody accent or the more guido-inclined Pauly D clones hanging outside Spats, Rhode Islanders wouldn’t want to tax us into oblivion. Growing up in a college town, I know from experience that a lot of town-gown tension is simply a result of a lack of interaction and understanding on both ends. Lastly, realize that getting an experience that most campus-dwellers lack can set you apart. This can mean anything from having something unique to talk about at Ratty dinner or having the experience that gives you the leg up in the interview room. So again, I urge you to try and develop a habit (no, not THAT kind of habit) that takes you out into the community. It doesn’t matter what you’re into. Like the environment? Think about working with an organization like the Rhode Island Sierra Club. Religious? Join a congregation off of College Hill. Maybe think about teaching kids about civics with Generation Citizen, or go find an area jam session and sit in. Just make it fun and make it something you care about. You’ll end up thanking yourself later.
Deep down, Kurt Walters ’11 wishes he were Pauly D.
Today The Brown Daily Herald
n e w s i n i m ag e s
Who knows the words, anyway?
to m o r r o w
79 / 67
83 / 55
Johnson ’11 on Brown’s search for self
Friday, September 24, 2010
c at c h t h e c o n t r a c e p t i v e
4 c a l e n da r Today
Fetal Origins of Infertility? Barus &
Mi Tigre, My Lover : Exhibition
Holley, Room 190
Sarah Doyle Women’s Center
A Lie of the Mind, Leeds Theatre,
Project Eye-To-Eye Info Session,
Salomon Center, Room 004
Glenn Lutzky / Herald
Participants in the Sexual Assault Task Force’s Consent Day tossed condom water baloons and played dildo ring toss on the Main Green Thursday afternoon. Their shirts proclaimed, “Consensual sex is hot!”
comics menu SHARPE REFECTORY
VERNEy-WOOLLEY DINING HALL
Bat & Gaz | Sofia Ortiz
LUNCH Hot Pastrami Sandwich, Red Potato Frittata, Sausage & Mushroom Pizza, Raspberry Swirl Cookies
Chicken Fingers, Vegan Nuggets, Baked Beans, Vegan Brown Rice Pilaf, M&M Cookies
DINNER Stuffed Shells Florentine, Sustainable Grilled Salmon, Pasta Bar, Birthday Cake
Pasta and Seafood Medley, Caribbean Chicken Mint Stir Fry, Roasted Vegetable Stew, Pound Cake
crossword Dot Comic | Eshan Mitra and Brendan Hainline
Fruitopia | Andy Kim
The Adventures of Team Vag | Wendy Kwartin