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03.13.14 VOL. XLV, NO. 19


The Indy thinks Dudley shouldn’t compete in IMs. Cover Design by ANNA PAPP

CONTENTS FORUM 3 How to Lose the River on Housing Day SPREAD 4 Adams / Quincy 5 Lowell / Dunster 6 Lev / Mather 7 Eliot / Kirkland 8 Winthrop / Pfoho 9 Currier / Cabot ARTS 10 Musical Message 11 Oper-Awesome! SPORTS 12 The Harvard Sports Book

As Harvard College's weekly undergraduate newsmagazine, the Harvard Independent provides in-depth, critical coverage of issues and events of interest to the Harvard College community. The Independent has no political affiliation, instead offering diverse commentary on news, arts, sports, and student life. For publication information and general inquiries, contact President Albert Murzakhanov (president@harvardindependent. com). Letters to the Editor and comments regarding the content of the publication should be addressed to Editor-in-Chief Sean Frazzette ( For email subscriptions please email president@ The Harvard Independent is published weekly during the academic year, except during vacations, by The Harvard Independent, Inc., Student Organization Center at Hilles, Box 201, 59 Shepard Street, Cambridge, MA 02138. Copyright Š 2014 by The Harvard Independent. All rights reserved.

President Albert Murzakhanov '16 Editor-in-Chief Sean Frazzette '16 Director of Production Anna Papp '16 News Editor Forum Editor Arts Editor Sports Editor Associate Forum Editor Associate Arts Editor Associate Design Editor

Milly Wang '16 Caroline Gentile '17 Sarah Rosenthal '15 Shaquilla Harrigan '16 Aditya Agrawal '17 Joanna Schacter Travis Hallett '14

Cartoonist John McCallum '16 Illustrator Eloise Lynton '17 Business Managers Frank Tambero '16 Manik Bhatia '16 Columnists Joan Li '17 Christina Bianco '17 Senior Staff Writers Christine Wolfe '14 Angela Song '14 Sayantan Deb '14 Michael Altman '14 Meghan Brooks '14 Whitney Lee '14 Staff Writers Manik Bhatia '16 Xanni Brown '14 Terilyn Chen '16 Lauren Covalucci '14 Clare Duncan '14 Gary Gerbrandt '14 Travis Hallett '14 Yuqi Hou '15 Cindy Hsu '14 Chloe Li '16 Dominique Luongo '17 Orlea Miller '16 Albert Murzhakanov '16 Carlos Schmidt '15 Frank Tamberino '16 Michael Feehly '14 Jackie Leong '16 Andrew Lin '17 Madi Taylor '16 Shreya Vardhan '17



Ways to Not Get Quadded

Start praying now




magine you have the power to make your peers cry on the spot. You open the door, try as hard as you can to instill excitement in others, yet only witness tears and cries of desperation. “This can’t be happening!” “No go away!” Now imagine causing this torture to others throughout Housing Day. It is as though you are a demon, a disease-infested beast, whom no one desires to greet. This is what it must feel like to be from the Quad dorms when you tell freshmen that they will be living with you next year. Although Housing Day is supposed to be joyous, I cannot imagine that being the Grim Reaper of Housing can be too fun. One of my sophomore friends recounted a story of huddling with her blockmates in her room waiting for their living assignment. They held hands and all chanted under their breath “Please not the quad.” They heard the upperclassmen from the quad dorms run through the halls. They heard the freshmen who answered their doors erupt into inconsolable sobbing fits. My friend held her breath and closed her eyes as she waited for the quaddies to leave. Then, there was silence. The block-mates all slowly opened their eyes and started to smile. “We aren’t quadded!” they started to whisper. As more minutes passed, it felt more certain that they had been blessed by the river gods. They started to dance and jump around as they happily waited for one of the river houses to greet them. Little did they know that the Cabot House had forgotten a group… Cabot quickly came back up the stairs and announced to my friend that in fact she had not been spared. He had simply forgotten a room. She was too shocked to be upset. I am yet to meet an undergraduate who hopes to live in the quad. Yes, the rooms are nicer and there are more singles but that small benefit does not compare with the long trek that is necessary to get to classes or practice. Because of this, I have tried to think of a few strategies to minimize, though not eliminate, chances of getting quadded. I have compiled a list with my favorites:

1) Chose your blocking group name wisely. Blocking groups have named themselves “Anything But the Quad” or “Save me from the Quad.” Perhaps the lottery system may be able to sense the desperation emitting from these group names. 2) Find someone with a health problem, or simply create one for yourself. This problem should have to be dealt strictly with by UHS, which is closer to the river houses. If the health issue is too grandiose, then this can increase your chances of living in the quad because Mt. Auburn Hospital is, in fact, closer to the quad. Quincy is apparently a latex-free dorm, so if you are registered with a latex allergy through the Accessible Education Office (AEO), then you are practically guaranteed to live in a river house! 3) Sleep with your pajamas inside out…it usually works when people wish for snow days. Maybe our wishes are more clearly expressed when our pajamas are inside out? 4) Have someone in your blocking group or linking group claim to need Kosher food. Therefore they will need to live closer to Hillel House. Again, this dietary restriction will need to be registered through the AEO. 5) Sacrifice something worthy to the river gods. Perhaps, if they are pleased, they will bestow their blessings upon you come Thursday morning. 6) Simply pray…can’t hurt right? While none of these ideas can guarantee you safety from a Quad house, I can’t foresee negative consequences. However, I have heard of a story of a female student who was an Orthodox Jew. Due to her religion, she could not take transportation on Fridays, and the AEO was aware of this restriction. Her blockmates and linkmates alike both felt assured that this guaranteed that they would not be quadded. After all, if quadded, she would have to walk to class every single Friday. However, that is exactly what she must do. In the grand scheme of things, living in Cabot, Currier, or Pforzheimer House is not the end of the world. However, if given the opportunity to increase your chances of not having to live in the quad, wouldn’t you take it? Ritchey Howe ’17 (ritcheyhowe@college) is hoping to get Rivered.

The Harvard Independent • 03.13.14




dams house has been my house, and my home for the past three years. As a graduating senior (I will start crying right now), I am completely biased and utterly in love with every nook and cranny of the house that has often seen me at my worst, provided me with comfort and in the process has become my home. Adams has the most close-knit house community I have come across in the past three years and to me represents a family away from my actually home. The Adams community has become my biggest support system, my guide, and above all my friend. That is exactly the kind of environment that Sean and Judy Palfrey, the most amazing House Masters EVER (again, this is going to be very biased) promote. I mean, how many other house masters dress up in drag and participate in one of the most iconic events on campus?! The tutors are an extension of this support system and provide a network of people who always have your back, regardless of your worries, whether it is questions about future plans, or the mouse you may or may not have seen in your room. In either case, the people really make Adams the house it is — friendly, warm, and full of House Spirit. At a completely superficial but really important level, the big draw for Adams is: LOCATION LOCATION LOCATION. It is the House nearest to the yard, which means it is the only house that allows you to run to class at the last minute. It also means that it is centrally situated, close to all of your favorite Harvard Square digs. It also means having the ability of returning to your house for lunch. Low blow? I know — but just keeping it real. Adams is also seeped in history. Every piece of intricate architectural feature of the house has a story, made most evident in the murals that cover the extensive network of tunnels connecting the main Adams building to Randolph. The paintings in the tunnels give a glimpse into the current and past student body at Adams in all its quirky glory. From the Pool (now a theater), supposedly the sight of plentiful debauchery at one time in Adams’ history to the FDR Suite in B entryway, to the painted domes, and randomly hidden rooms and marble floors of Claverly Hall, there is a story to be told in every corner of the house. Adams also fosters the arts actively throughout the house. There is the

Pool Theater, where you can get involved in a show, or simply go to watch a show as a study break during the weekend. A Bow and Arrow Press, and an Art Studio round out the infrastructure available in Adams to nurture your existing interests or fuel new ones. Like I have mentioned before, beyond what meets the eye, Adams is really all about its community. The sort of deep bonding within the house is fostered by rich Adams House traditions. Every Thursday is Carpe Noctem – where Adamsians all come together in music, games, performance, or a movie to celebrate the approaching weekend. Christmas is accompanied by a dinner, and the black-tie reading of Winnie the Pooh, followed by caroling in Apthorp House (where the masters live). The common spaces of the house are also transformed during its Winter and Spring Formals, enhancing the sense of pride in the house. Every time I walk into Adams, I am usually weary — after a long day in lab, or from a long trip back from home. However, the minute I enter the House, I am enveloped by a sense of familiarity. I know that I will run into multiple smiling faces even before I make it to my room – people who I had not known before being placed in the House, who have now all become my friends. Even this year, working late into the night on my thesis, I met some wonderful people who I had barely known before the last month. In the midst of the sleep-deprived marathon that thesising is, we became close friends. I know that it is cliché to say what I am about to say, but truly, Adams was never just a house for me. Right from the day I had walked through its majestic doors, I knew that I had found a place in this big university that I can always call my home. Through its rich history, its wonderful staff, and close-knit student body, Adams has shown me that no matter where I go when I graduate, and how long I have to stay away, I will always carry the bustling, cheerful, warmth of Adams in my heart, embody in my actions, and foster it in my acquaintances. It’s true that I wasn’t born into royalty, but Adams rules my heart, runs in my blood, and that’s good enough for me. Get ready to live that fantasy!

QUINCY HOUSE HISTORY: Quincy House officially opened in 1959 and is one of the nine river houses. It is named after Josiah Quincy III, who was the President of Harvard from 1829 to 1845. Its official colors are red, gold, and black and its mascot is the penguin. Lee Gehrke and Deborah Gehrke are the current House Masters. Lee Gehrke is a professor of microbiology and molecular genetics at Harvard Medical School. Famous alumni of the house include Tennessee Governor Phil Bredesen, Under Secretary of Defense for Policy Douglas Feith, and Zappos CEO Tony Hsieh.

THE UPSIDE: 1) Location, Location, Location Though Adams House has a reputation for being the best house location-wise since it is the closets to the yard, Quincy House is only one block down from Adams and so sits on prime real estate as well. It is only a short walk away from the Yard and classes and also very close to a row of various small convenience stores and restaurants. It sits on Mt. Auburn Street, and so is also quite close to the Garage and the Smith Center. It is also right next door to the Hillel. 2) Newly Renovated Old Quincy was newly renovated and opened earlier this school year to incoming sophomores. It is the first fully renewed building in the House Renewal Project. The building is LEED Gold certified as environmentally friendly. Its large common spaces are tastefully decorated and color coordinated, which gives 4

off a very chic feel. The green, pink, black and white decoration scheme gives the house a very modern and sleek feel. In the newly renovated Old Quincy, walk-through bedrooms have been eliminated, single bedrooms that cluster around common rooms quipped with sofas and TVs have been introduced, and ceiling fans and elevators have also been added in. 3) Quincy Grill Yummy, yummy, yummy! The Quincy Grill is student-run and opens seven days a week. Here, you can find delicious late night snacks including mozzarella sticks, milkshakes, curly fries, chicken fingers or burgers. So much delicious, and perfect for a late night up while working on writing papers or finishing psets!

THE DOWNSIDE: 1) Only Old Quincy, named Stone Hall, has been renovated. The rest of the house is still quite old and there is no guarantee that you’ll end up in the newly renovated rooms if you are sorted into Quincy. 2) Crowded Perhaps its because of its reputation as the “people’s house,” Quincy’s dining hall is always extremely crowded. You can never be sure if someone you meet there is actually in your house or just a visiting guest. And it is definitely difficult to find a place to sit and quietly enjoy your meal. Try visiting another house for a quiet dining experience! Or wait for Quincy community dinner night.

03.13.14 • The Harvard Independent




owell House pride has soared in recent years, and understandably so: Lowellians have a lot to be proud of. For starters, its location as the central-most River house means everyone is your neighbor and anything or anyone is not far away. Everyone is quick to bring up the close proximity of final clubs, but their presence (which should not be bothersome because you shouldn’t be studying on the weekend anyway) is hardly ever a nuisance. The formidable toll of the bells is much louder and of a much less recognizable tune, but they are but yet another reason to be proud of Lowell House — baby got bells. It is often correctly stated that Lowell is a tightlyknit community, though it is unclear if this prideful trait is only due to the close quarters in which everyone lives. But only first semester sophomores complain about having to traipse through innumerable bedrooms, common rooms, and passageways just to make it to their in-suite bathrooms. No, this does not change much with seniority: we just make the best of it in this 84-year-old not-soon-tobe-renovated architecturally award-winning abode. Voyeurs of Lowell’s House Day videos of recent

Founded: 1930 Mascot: Henry Dunster Moose (Find him on Facebook). House Masters: IBM Professor of Business Roger Porter and Mrs. Ann Porter

Freshmen should know right off the bat that if they get sorted into Dunster this morning, they are not actually getting sorted into Dunster House. Dunster House is a gorgeous neo-Georgian masterpiece whose iconic red bell tower shines on the picture postcards that Harvard Square tourists mail back home. Dunster House has a majestic dining hall paneled in dark wood and hung with golden chandeliers, and a library whose rich oriental carpets and walnut tables are old Harvard at its finest. Dunster House has a comfortable, friendly basement grille where curly fries and chocolate shakes are served until 2 a.m., a weight room, cardio room, erg room, four squash courts, a basketball court, a dance studio, a TV room, and a JCR that becomes Harvard’s hottest Stein Club every other Friday night. (Dunster House also has walkthroughs small enough to necessitate scaled-down desks and enough old, peeling paint to alarm the CDC). New Dunster freshmen are instead being sorted into Dunster-in-exile, a House community forced from the banks of the Charles to a traffic island in the middle of Mass Ave. As the real Dunster House, built in 1930, will be spending the next year off the grid for complete interior renovations, freshmeese can look forward to moving into swing housing as The Harvard Independent • 03.13.14

LOWELL HOUSE years will recognize the yellow walls of the dining hall, which is even more familiar to Lowellians, who often spend time working and chatting together there at all hours of the day and night, rendering Lowell not just a place to eat and sleep, but a place to spend time with friends, tutors, and house masters alike. It is difficult to overestimate the amount Lowell Love for Harvard’s favorite housemasters, Diana Eck and Dorothy Austin. One needs not look further than “Get Lowell” and “Drunk in Lowell” to see the extent to which Thursday Tea, raucous fun, and house pride are as important to D&D as they are to every other Lowellian. Some of Lowell’s most stately traditions are like a nostalgic trip through time. Take the events of late spring, for example, which include a May Day waltz on Weeks Bridge and the annual playing of the

1812 overture in the Big (as opposed to the Small) Courtyard. After Spring Break, a not-insignificant portion of the dining hall is transformed into the set for the Lowell House Opera, which may or may not be to the chagrin of everyone who wants a table to sit at during lunch or dinner. Don’t let this balanced overview fool you, though: Lowellians and non-Lowellians alike will tell you that Lowell is one of the best houses, which is not so far from the truth (hint: we’re #1!). Like Harvard itself, that which makes Lowell truly great is a combination of diverse and uniquely talented students, tutors, staff, and administrators that all love the House equally. Prime location and beautiful architecture further seal the deal. After all, why compromise if you don’t have to?


sophmeese instead. The Inn at Harvard, located mere feet from the Barker Center, will serve as the community’s pseudo-Dunster, with a dining hall, communal spaces, House offices, and student housing built in. Hampden, Ridgely, and Fairfax, which currently serve as swing housing for displaced Leverettites, will house many Dunster students as well, as will the recently converted Prescott Street apartments. With their hardwood floors, ensuite kitchenettes, and spacious accommodations, the swing spaces will likely prove popular. It is unclear, however, if the community will be able to sustain its tight-knitted feel with its inhabitants spread out across six different buildings. Currently, Dunster has one of the strongest senses of House spirit on campus. Centered largely around the dining hall, where Meese can be found studying, chatting, and of course, eating, at all hours of the day and night (Dunster dinner is open until 8 p.m.), House life is warm, supportive, and above all, fun. House Masters Roger and Ann Porter are known for their festive monthly open houses, and often sneak homemade goodies into brain break during midterms and finals seasons. Tutors are actively involved in the community — their athletic efforts have been instrumental in achieving Dunster’s current second-place Straus Cup standing — and organize game nights and outings on a regular basis. Additionally, from the House offices to the dining hall to the guards’ desk, House staff take the time to learn students’ names and quickly become integral to Meese’s Dunster

experience. As with anything at Harvard, however, tradition is what makes the House, and Dunster is rife with it. The first house to host a petting zoo, Dunster hosts a hoe-down each fall in the courtyard with bobbing for apples and apple cider doughnuts. Halloween brings pumpkin carving contests, and the Christmas season is marked by a full orchestral performance of Handel’s Messiah in the dining hall led by professional opera singers and choral books from the 1920s. A twenty-foot tree (usually with more than a few menorah ornaments) and dangling kissing balls setting the scene. The winter formal is usually inter-house and off-campus, but the spring formal is held amid the dogwood blossoms in the House courtyard, overlooking the Charles and Weeks Footbridge. The highlight of the spring semester, however, might be the annual Goat Roast, during which Dunster students and tutors skin a whole goat with primitive tools and then roast it on a spit in the courtyard. Meese less inclined to sink their teeth into gamey goat are treated to a full barbecue with bouncy castles and sumo wrestling suits. The rest of the year is punctuated with spontaneous s’mores, also in the courtyard, senior common room dinners, and increasingly notorious Stein Clubs. If you’ve ever wanted to see a drunk moose get down, you’re in the right House. Sleep tight freshmeese, and dream of Dunster. We’ll have antlers waiting for you when you wake.



LEVERETT HOUSE A folk singer. A basketball star. A democratic socialist. A chief justice. Chief. And you. What’s in a name? The OED defines a “Leveret” as: 1) A young hare, strictly in its first year: You bright eyed, bushy tailed freshman — this could be you. Sophomores have the chance to stretch out their hind legs in spacious Tower suites or newly renovated McKinlock Hall. The Towers guarantee some of the best sophomore (junior and senior) housing on campus, with huge common rooms, picture windows, and a diversity of room choice. McKinlock, or Old Lev, promises more singles and some multi-level suites postrenovation, though it will retain the old Harvard charm McKinlock has always bestowed on its river-gazing residents.

MATHER HOUSE While I thought getting into Harvard was one of the most prestigious things to ever happen to me, the sheer joy and ecstasy I experienced when I was accepted into Mather House (known to true Matherites as Mather University) was truly forever life changing. While the weak weep because they cannot handle the prospect of having the best housing on campus, my block mates and I rejoiced with MatherBucks, whipped cream, and awesome Mather shades. How could we not, I mean singles for all three years?! A large common room fit for only the best of Bacchanalian affairs if you live in the low-rise?!?! A fantastic view of the Charles River and Boston if you life in the tower!?!?!?!? How can living in such refinement appall any first-year? While Mather is the river house that is the farthest away from the Yard, we do boast our own shuttle that comes frequently. Mather also has the best dining hall on campus. Not only do we have a glorious view of the Charles River, our food is on point. Mather and Dunster share a kitchen and aren't subjected to large HUDS food-vat concoctions; each meal is prepared specially and lovingly by the best dining hall staff on campus. Whether Ms. Michelle is checking in individually with each student, Betty is smiling as she swipes your card, or Juana is making sure that everyone is repping the Yankees in some form or fashion, all of the Mather dining hall staff are incredibly friendly and help turn Mather House in a home. Mather's Friday night brain breaks also come in clutch. Other houses put their students through mental and emotional anxiety during the housing lottery each spring. Students manipulate and cajole each other in order to get rooms that are only marginally better. In Mather, there


2) A spiritless person: This isn’t a fair representation of Leverett. Sure, Lev’s no Kirkland (but isn’t that mostly a good thing?). But Leverites know where they belong, just like the bunnies who live in the Towers courtyard. Lev may not have any crazy traditions (though donuts the night before the first day of exams draws students from across campus), but the incredibly involved, caring tutor staff, resident dean, and house masters easily make this house a home. Moreover, McKinlock’s renovations will address many complaints Leverites have voiced in the past in regards to lack of house community. With an expanded dining hall, more common spaces for studying and socializing, and the ever-mysterious “Light Court,” Leverites will have more places to come together than ever before. 3) A pet/or mistress: We’re the one you really want. IMPORTANT NOTE: Lev is hosting a bunny petting zoo for all our new bunnies today! Be sure to head over to Annenberg to pet a fricking bunny.

are no losers in the housing lottery. Everyone is happy (but usually not alone wink, wink) in his or her own single. In addition to swanky singles, Matherites are treated to its own private art gallery, gym, wood working shop, tranquility room, and multiple study rooms. Matherites can also leave their mark by adding the collection of paintings and tiles found in Mather's tunnels. Even though all of the praise I lay upon Mather may not quell the doubt nonbelievers carry, I know that Mather's impressive history will shut the mouths of all the haters. Besides being the home of Conan O'Brien and Cornel West, is Harvard's newest dorm. Mather was also the progenitor of the Housing Day dorm storm tradition and epic housing day videos (see "My House [Mather House]," "Concrete Seduction," and "Talk Mather To Me"). It is completely evident that Mather's house spirit and is unparalleled. Being in Mather is like being with all of your closest friends and family. And the biggest perk about living in Mather is definitely all of the amazing parties. Getting into Mather House is like getting punched and making through all the rounds of the best final club (except, without you know, all of the judgment and biddies). The most legendary (and notorious) of parties is Mather Lather. You get to be all sudsy and slippery with hundreds of your closest friends. Attending this party is definitely of must-do at Harvard. If this snapshot into the epic life you would live in Mather isn't enough to convince you of our glory, you are probably too lame to be able to enjoy all of the awesome perks of being in Mather. You should probably end up in a house like Dunster or Winthrop.

03.13.14 • The Harvard Independent



ELIOT HOUSE Named after a former president of Harvard University, Eliot is one of the seven original houses from 1931. Before Harvard opted to use the lottery system it does today to assign upperclassmen to houses, Eliot was known as a “prep” house for the university’s social elite. Though the housing process is now done, or at least supposed to be, through a random lottery, Eliot remains the only house to have an endowment, allowing it to hold the yearly spring formal, the Eliot Fête. Eliot’s mascot is the highly unusual mastodon.

izing. Unlike Adams’ dining hall, Eliot’s is quite a bit of a walk from the yard and mainly consists of Eliot students. To foster greater community, Eliot holds community conversations every Thursday for dinner, allowing only those who are a part of Eliot to participate. In terms of food, Eliot offers a standard experience. Housing: The sophomore housing for Eliot, as in most River houses, is not the ideal; however, by senior year, students are guaranteed n+1 housing. A prime hotspot on Friday and Saturday nights, Eliot boasts party suites that include Ground Zero, the Octagon, and the infamous Cockpit. Having a historical tradition of housing the wealthy and social elite of Harvard, the classiness can be seen everywhere, from its dining hall to the abundant pianos. Eliot is also the only House with a toast. There’s something for everyone: The Inferno (the grille), a woodshop area, and even a movie theatre.

House pride: Eliot residents have great pride for their House, as evidenced by the enormous turnout of Domus-chanting students in the Yard on Housing Day. House pride in Eliot is probably one of the strongest among all the houses. HoCo members plan numerous community events such as the House Charity auction (where attendees can bid to have an intimate dinner with the House Masters). Location: Eliot is situated in what is arguably the best of both worlds: although it is Famous alums and facts: only a six-minute walk from the yard, it has breathtaking views of the river. A descendant of Prophet Muhammad, The Unabomber, Leonard Bernstein, Eliot’s exterior has the quintessential Harvard appeal. and Benazir Bhutto are some of the famous alumni of Eliot. Eliot’s famous bell tower has been featured in Legally Blonde, The Social Network, and Love Story. Dining Hall: Eliot’s Harvard-esque dining hall s a prime location for studying and social-


irkland, or KHaus (as they copied from Dunster), is an easily recognizable House to many, and known for their esteemed dropouts, such as Mark Zuckerberg and Matt Damon. If sorted here, however, trust me, freshman, you will not want to drop out. The Boars of Kirkland know how to have fun and have one of the strongest communities at Harvard. Kirkland is one of the smallest houses at Harvard, and with that comes one of the, err, tightest knit groups of people on campus. People are really, well, friendly, I guess you could say — so friendly, in fact, that it hosts the annual Incestfest. Freshman, I’m sure some of you tried to get in last year, and if you’re housed in Kirkland on Housing Day, you will be sure to be at it next year. It’s an excuse to hook up with any person walking by, simply because, well, that’s the point. Beside this tradition, Kirkland also has a house wide Secret Santa exchange that lasts a week. Everyone goes all out for their partner, only adding to the closeness of the community — albeit, in a slightly different way. The house was finished in 1933 and boasts some of the most beautiful rooms that Harvard has to offer. The JCR boasts dark wood panels and some magnificent furnishings that lead many to believe that royalty is not found all the way over in Adams. Similarly, the Dining Hall — while not as extravagant as Annenberg or even Dunster — has its own Kirkland-y feel. It is, of course, small, and contains not just long tables but also smaller, round tables for groups to sit around and chat over a meal. Moreover, the food in Kirkland is easily near

The Harvard Independent • 03.13.14

the top when it comes to upperclassman houses. For athletes and others who feel the need to travel across the river or head on over to the MAC, Kirkland’s proximity to Anderson Bridge makes it a very enticing place to live. It was once the ‘jock house’ when students got to choose due to these conditions, and the benefit remains the same. Maybe getting that early morning workout wouldn’t be too hard if you lived right by the gym? While not every house is perfect, Kirkland sure comes close. The most common complaint about the house is the room size. While bedrooms are often quite small, especially in comparison to the massive singles found in the Quad, the common room space in KHaus is often plentiful. There is always a good amount of room to do as you please, whether that be hosting study groups, throwing parties, or just inviting your friends over to watch TV. Singles are also hard to come by, so if you’re worried about being sexiled, Kirkland may not be the place for you. So as not to end on a bad note, Kirkland also holds one of the nicest libraries on campus. Clean and quiet, with the beauty that the house has to offer, this is an excellent place to study or just get some work done. Luckily, it is also only open to Kirkland residents, so you will never have to worry about it being crowded. So that’s that, freshman. Pray to the river gods, and maybe Kirkland will be in your future.



WINTHROP HOUSE House spirit is synonymous with Winthrop, as they have won the Straus Cup more than any other House in history. If you are varsity athlete, the proximity to both the boathouses and the athletic facilities across the river is a definite plus. Winthrop can claim a few of the most beautiful courtyards on campus, which serve as comfortable nooks for students seeking some fresh air and riverside views. Another favorite place for Winthrop residents to hang out is the dining hall, the divided structure allowing for both social interaction and (semi)focused study. While the rooming situation in Winthrop leaves something to be desired, it at least doesn’t have walkthroughs (take that, Dunster). Most rooms are suite-style with a large common room and rooms that radiate from it. The common spaces such as the Tonkens Room are among the nicest House facilities on-campus. The House gym is Winthrop’s best-kept secret. Equipped with a full set of free-weights, ergs, treadmills, and stationary bikes (both standing and recumbent), Winthrop’s gym is a great place to go and exercise the stress away. Winthrop’s residential staff, headed by Ronald S. Sullivan Jr. and Stephanie Robinson, are cited as the heart of Winthrop house. With cute children, pugs, and corgis, residents of Winthrop are sure to have their good fill of cute. Winthrop: if it was good enough for the Kennedys, it’s good enough for you.


fortunate pfreshmen placed in Pfoho should shed tears of happiness this Housing Day Thursday. These lucky future Class of 2017 quadlings will have truly won the Housing Lottery. Yes, the Quad may seem pfar, and the habit of putting a “pf” in pfront of and in the middle of every single word that normally contains an “f” may be annoying at first, but at the end of the day, every Pfohoser knows that Pfoho is a loving, caring home that you can truly count on pfor three wonderpful years. Students are guaranteed singles or enormous suites sometimes even pfeaturing common rooms with kitchen, pfrom the pfateful day when they are lucky enough to receive their acceptance letters pfrom polar bears who were never bothered by the cold, anyway. But if they were, Pfoho’s pfamous double dining hall, that offers a comfortable and spacious place to eat on the lower level is accessible pfrom rooms without having to go outdoors and changing out of their pfuzzy pajamas. There are cozy nooks on the second level pfor board games and late-night study sessions with other pfriends. And when the dining hall food just doesn’t do it, pfear not: the Quad Grill is always stocked with mozz sticks, milkshakes, burgers, and quesadillas. Pfoho is also the scene of the pfamous


90s dance and wonderful Pfoho Pfridays usually featuring delicious Pfelipe’s guacamole and chips. Housemasters John Durant, Anne Harrington, and their Chelsea-loving, X-box fanatic nine-year old Jamie, have made their first-year at Pfoho remarkable. Other than the opening of the luxurious spfa with an upscale massage chair that has its own soundtrack, the planning of a party space in the basement, and the introduction of “Lunch on the House” that lets students take out their TFs or professors anywhere in the Square, the new Housemasters have truly spoiled Pfohomies with splendid Housemaster Open Houses. These Sunday night events have included tasty delights from themes such as desserts around the world, German and Austrian snacks (with a special appearance of Hungarian Salami! Yum!), Tapas, etc. The Masters also organize Pfull English Breakfasts open to anyone who signs up. Whatever our River friends may say, those who are lucky enough to pass under the arch of Pforzheimer House will not be disappointed. And the walk really isn’t that pfar.

03.13.14 • The Harvard Independent





ou know the story of pitying the underdog? Well that story does not apply here. Students have consistently agreed that Currier stands out for its surprisingly delicious dining hall food, excess of singles, and house pride.

The Short but Rich History: Currier, opened in 1970, is among the three houses of the Radcliffe Quad, and it is the only house at Harvard to be named after a woman: Audrey Bruce Currier. The official Currier colors are green, red, and black, and its official mascot is a tree. Thereby, the well-known motto “Timete Arobrem,” which, as fancy as it sounds, translates into “Fear the Tree.” The Dining Hall: Currier’s Dining Hall, though slightly mirroring a retirement home, offers indisputably the best food among all the houses, for it is the only house to not have to share its kitchen with any other house. Being the smallest house in terms of number of students allows the Currier dining hall staff to be able to allocate the same resources in a more efficient way.

Amenities: Currier has a wonderful layout: you don’t have to go outside to get anywhere in the House, including the dining hall. Its central entrances are known for fostering community and the layout of the floor includes singles off a hallway, which means you’ll definitely be getting to know your neighbors. Currier has two gyms, a dance studio, a piano room, a movie theater, and a common area where students come together to watch television, play pool, air hockey, and foosball. Rooming: Most of the Currier towers include a layout in which there are two side-byside singles connected by either a “sink room” (literally a room with a sink) or a bathroom. This allows you to live in singles while being right next to the people from your blocking group. I know many people complain that they want the experience of a common room, but as you can see, a Currier single is bigger than most common rooms by the river. If you’re the type to host parties, the Currier Ten-Man is a great option for senior year housing (it is where the Heaven of Currier’s annual Heaven and Hell Party is held). The Ten-Man has an elevator that opens right into the room as well as an in-suite bar; as its name suggests, there are 10 singles surrounding a massive common room. Currier is definitely Harvard’s most underrated house, offering an amazing mixture of house spirit, great housing layouts, and unbeatable dining hall food and staff.


abot is more than just a library housed in the Science Center. No, in fact, it is also a house beloved by all of its residents. And it’s not hard to see why. For one, Cabot boasts the Cabot Café, a student-run organization that serves espresso drinks and tea late into the night during the week. Many a student, not just the residents of Cabot, has trekked to the café to get some work done while sipping on a nutella-flavored latte and listening to the café’s infamous soundtrack. Housing-wise, Cabot consists of six buildings that were all originally only Radcliffe College dorms. The rooming situations in Cabot are very desirable; about 70% of beds are in suites (occupants have their own rooms), and 30% in singles. Perhaps the one downside are the floor bathrooms, but they are spacious and spotlessly clean. Cabot residents’ propinquity to chant “Go Fish!” reflects their pride in being a part of the Cabot community. Sure, having a fish as a mascot could be construed as lame, but those in Cabot couldn’t be prouder to be fish. The House motto

The Harvard Independent • 03.13.14

is Semper Cor — always heart — which is also reflective of their house pride. One Cabot resident in particular has just been named the Dean of the College; Rakesh Khurana, and his wife Stephanie, are the housemasters of Cabot. Although the title of Dean of College sounds intimidating, the two are anything but. They are very approachable and down to earth, and eat in the dining hall regularly. Perhaps the biggest downside to Cabot, though, is the dining hall. Most of the dining halls in other houses are known for having mahogany paneling and being adorned with paintings, tapestries, and marble busts, but Cabot’s is not quite as grandiosely decorated. Its walls are painted white and its floor carpeted. One might compare it to a nursing home dining hall. That said, one wall is entirely glass, so on the bright side (literally), there is a lot of natural light! Notable alumni of Cabot House include Rivers Cuomo and the Prime Minister of Pakistan, Benazir Bhutto.


Where’s the line? By MADISON TAYLOR


ast week, I had the chance to see Witness Uganda at the American Repertory Theater. I didn’t know much about the show before I went, only that it was inspired by one of its creator’s experience volunteering in Uganda. An email I received from the ART read “Witness Uganda is inspired by the true story of Griffin Matthews and his creation of the nonprofit UgandaProject, a grassroots aid organization that sponsors the education of 10 Ugandan students including their tuition, food, housing, and basic needs.” A piece of creative theater about a true story — it sounded interesting. Some further research on the ART website led to a description of the plot saying “When Griffin, a young man from New York City, volunteers for a project in Uganda, he finds himself on a journey that will change his life forever. Inspired by a true story, this rousing new musical, staged by Tony Award-winning director and A.R.T. Artistic Director Diane Paulus, exposes the challenges confronted by American aid workers and the complex realities of trying to change the world.” A musical devised from real life events meant to educate and inspire the audience? I wasn’t quite sure what to expect — was I going to see the kind of Pippin-esque musical that seems to be typical of the ART, full of spectacles, dramatic lighting, intricate costumes, wonderful acting, massive sets, and acrobatics? Or was I going to hear a story about the hardships taking place in Uganda? Several of my friends had already seen Witness Uganda, and it was the first time I’d heard anything but universally glowing reviews about an ART show. Some of them raved that it was an inspirational story, and others complained that it didn’t live up to the high artistic standards of past ART productions. Even before I walked into the theater, I was therefore confused about what the show was trying to be — an inspirational story or a quality piece of theater. Could it be both? I won’t claim to be a professional theater critic of any sort, but I’ve seen my fair share of shows from elementary school stages to Broadway. So I felt that I had a good base of theatrical experience to which I could compare Witness Uganda. And as I left the theater, I understood both of the


opinions I’d heard from my friends — I was completely inspired to find a way to make a difference in the world, but I also was conflicted about the “piece-of-theater” side of things. In my opinion, in many ways it was a very typical ART production. The moving set, the beautiful projections, the costumes, and the lighting were wonderful. All of the technical aspects of the show were very high quality and created a believable world. The music was also fantastic, full of soaring melodies, moving lyrics, and catchy rhythms. But two features felt somewhat subpar for the quality of theater people have come to expect from the ART. The first was the book, or dialogue, of the show. It needed more work — the story and lines didn’t always flow naturally, and some of the dialogue felt stilted or like it was trying too hard to either make a joke or make a point. The second piece that left me wanting was the staging. While much of it was natural and often touching, some of the movement and positioning of, and interaction between, the actors on stage felt forced and occasionally overly dramatic in a stereotypical “musical theater” way. This was definitely not what I expected from a Tony Award winning director. I left conflicted for two reasons. First, although the show was not the best theater from a purely artistic viewpoint that I’ve seen at the ART, I can’t remember being more inspired to help people or hearing such a powerful story and message. Second, I knew that this show was coming to life for the first time on this stage, and that they’d still been working on and revising it just a few weeks prior to the performance I saw. So I found myself wondering if Witness Uganda’s infancy and emotional power excuse what I personally felt was a not-fully-ready performance that could have used a few more weeks of work. In other words, was it ok for the ART to put on a less artistically developed, though incredibly inspiring, show for paying customers who expect top-quality theater? Where do we draw the line between spectacle and story, and how do we define successful theater? There seems to be a consumer trend today towards big, bold, almost over-the-top musicals in the Pippin, Wicked, and Kinky Boots vein. But as Witness Uganda is trying to turn a true story into theater

and inspire others simply through that story, is it fair to expect the same “spectacle standard” from them? Aren’t big acrobatic dance numbers, hilarious one-liners, and larger-than-life sets inappropriate amongst the actual events in the retelling of Griffin’s story? Perhaps it’s reasonable to expect a book that was a little more refined than the one I saw, but again, if those were the true-to-life words of Griffin’s story, is it so reasonable? As I wasn’t in the rehearsal room, I also can’t say how much of the staging was trying to echo the truth of these situations and how much was done for the visual or dramatic effect. So where does that leave the audience members like me who left inspired but conflicted? Were we justified in feeling that way, or were we expecting too much and maybe appreciating too little of the truth of the story? In the end, Witness Uganda was a show I’d see again, and one I enjoyed. It really made me think about how theater can be used as a vessel for change, a way to expose people to issues far removed from their daily lives and hopefully to inspire them to make a difference. I think that if Griffin and Matt, the creators, and the creative team continue to develop the show, it has huge potential to become the ideal combination of a quality musical and a true story, and I am excited to see what its future holds. Madison Taylor ’16 (madisontaylor@college) is very happy she gets to see shows to write for the Indy (can she do that forever?), and can’t wait for Spring’s warm weather to arrive!

03.13.14 • The Harvard Independent

On A High Note A Review of the Metropolitan Opera’s Prince Igor By CHRISTINA BIANCO


n Saturday March 1st, I rushed over to the movie theater in Kenmore Square to see Alexander Borodin’s opera Prince Igor broadcasted by the Metropolitan Opera. As the curtain rose, the opera began with a projection of the quote “to unleash a war is the surest way to escape oneself” and this quote set the stage nicely for Dimitri Tcherniakov’s dreamlike interpretation of the Russian opera. Prince Igor was Borodin’s only opera, and left unfinished when the composer suddenly died in 1887. Borodin was notably a doctor, chemist, and women’s rights activist in addition to being a Romantic composer. But this 4-hour opera was no easy undertaking for Borodin, who worked on Prince Igor for 18 years before his death. The opera is a retelling of an anonymous 12th century Russian epic poem, and the plot is focused on the ancient Prince Igor of the city Putivl as he gathers his army for a war against the Polovtsians. However, Prince Igor’s troops are defeated, and he and his son Vladimir are taken captive. Matters become further complicated with a star-crossed love affair as Igor’s son Vladimir falls in love with the daughter of Khan Konchak, the ruler of the Polovtsians. However, rather than use this love affair as an opportunity for a truce, Igor vows to continue the fight against the Polovtsian and escapes captivity. Prince Igor then returns to his city, which is left in ruins, but his subjects still hail him upon his return. This particular adaptation last Saturday was a new production at the Metropolitan Opera. It has become common in the opera world for directors to attempt to modernize operas by adapting them in ways that would appeal to contemporary audiences, and the style of new productions can range from highly simplistic and abstract to incredibly shocking and anachronistic. But director Dimitri Tcherniakov outdid himself. Not only did this new production leave no small detail untouched, but it also brought and new life and understanding to this plot through the director and conductor’s reinterpretation of this musical text. During his interview with Eric Owens, director Tcherniakov mentioned that the stakes were high for him when tackling this production because he had grown up in Russia knowing the tale of Prince Igor. His intentions were to create a production

The Harvard Independent • 03.13.14

that would be somewhat of a surprise to anyone who knew the piece well, but mostly, for those who weren’t familiar with the opera, Tcherniakov wanted Igor to be easy to follow. Using vivid black-and-white silent-film segments, 12500 fake poppies, and an overall timeless set which could have been indicative of several different centuries, Tcherniakov uses the staging and intricacies in order to advance the plot in ways that would not have been possible with a traditional set. The black and white film provided an emotional intimacy with the characters that was incredibly striking, and the interpretation of the set brought the audience closer to Igor’s mind as he struggled mentally throughout the opera. The theatricality of this production also seemed to succeed in bringing out the character of Borodin’s music, for the use of the emotions, blocking, and dancing brought the audience closer to the music by successfully animating the score. Another unique element in this production is the reinterpretation of the music. Tchnerniakov along with the conductor Ildar Abdrazakov made this opera uniquely their own by reordering scenes, tweaking the plot, and adding musical numbers from a different score. Although it may seem as though changing the score would be an opera sacrilege, this particular opera provides certain liberties since it was left unfinished by Borodin. But the main thing that struck me about this production was the outstanding cast. Russian singer Ildar Abdrazakov led the production impressively well. In one of his interviews he also mentioned apprehensions about performing in this opera since he felt great responsibility as a Russian singer in a Russian opera. However, Abdrazakov proved to be a solid actor with a wide emotional range and capacity, and had a wonderfully pleasing tone, which was firm but not overwhelming.

And finally, Russian tenor Sergey Semishkur (also in his Met debut) provided a sincere interpretation of Vladimir, successfully capturing the passion of his character. Although I have never had a particular inclination towards Russian opera, I found this production to be both provocative and engaging. The beauty of Borodin’s music and the wonderful musical interpretations by the singers, conductor, and director all struck me as exceptional. Although the opera was admittedly strange at parts, part of enjoying this production was accepting its whimsical nature. And the reinterpretation kept this opera fresh. However, the issue of the length would definitely be a factor in my recommendation of this opera, because viewing it in totality was definitely a commitment. However, even though the opera had its slow moments, I was thankful for its cohesiveness and energy. Christina Bianco ’17 (christinabianco@college) found Prince Igor a welcome break from studying for her Economics 10b midterm.

Ukrainian soprano Oksana Dyka (in her Met debut) also embarked on her role of Yaroslavna masterfully from the moment she took the stage. Her voice was clear and piercing as she tackled all of her high notes. And she was countered nicely by Georgian mezzo-soprano Anita Rachvelishvili as Konchakovna with her luxuriously deep voice and sensual physicality.



House of Jocks

The Definitive Ranking of Harvard’s Houses by Athletics.




very year, each one of the Harvard’s bulk up amidst the pros, Mather’s got your back. more reason why Lowell may not compete as well houses vie for every freshman’s With one of the nicer gyms of the River houses in intramurals is the large number of successful Debunking the proximity = fitness theory is and proximity to the Charles for morning and varsity athletes in the house. love and affection through various afternoon (and late night) River Runs, even the To give you a quick idea, Lowell is home to Kirkland House. A stone’s throw away from the bouts of smack-talk and over-the-top scrawniest can become jacked in no time. Mather Yoshi Andersen who won a gold medal for US MAC, Kirkland boasts surprisingly few athletes. housing day videos. But what happens has a strong IM spirit, even if they’re not the Junior Water Polo at World Championships, Perhaps seeing desperate undergrads making when that smack-talk has to stand up top performers, and members of the House are James Fox, (captain of the wrestling team), and the trek to the MAC makes Kirkland residents decide to stay indoors and focus on their studies. to the results on the field, court, or pool? guaranteed to show up sporting Mather pride. Mike Mosca the top male diver at this year’s Ivy On the other hand, maybe the legacy of the Navigating Mather’s Escherian stairwells and League Championships. With all of these factors, Some houses easily rise to the occasion tunnels can leave anyone out of breath, so getting Lowell will be ideal for someone who is willing algorithm on the window of Kirkland (if you and best their counterparts in varsity or in shape before moving in might be a good call. to exercise in the great facilities without the don’t get the reference, you really have to getting around to watching the Social Network) has intramural sporting excursions. Other competition of intramurals. inspired Kirkland residents to try to begin online houses boast amazing gym and wellness start-ups in the hopes of becoming billionaires. For those wondering about Lev’s athleticism, facilities that promote athletic excellence Kirkland does have some notable athletes they need to look no further than the Leverett Quad-lings may have a distance running amongst all members of the house. shield: those are some buff bunnies. Wrestlers, advantage due to epic sprinting after missing within their brick walls including point-guard This year, the Harvard Independent golfers, and basketball players have made Lev the Quad Express shuttle on a Monday morning, Christine Clark ‘14 and ice hockey player Gina sports staff decided to analyze every home for the last few years, but it doesn’t mean but Currier residents have the added bonus of McDonald ‘14. Even though Kirkland is low on our list this amazing in-house athletic facilities. Currier aspect of house athleticism from athletic they’re the only rabbits running. year, Kirkland has still one the Straus Cup During Lev’s renovations, the Lev gym was boasts a dance studio and an expansive gym. facilities, to the proliferation of impressive moved from McKinlock to G Tower, boasting In addition, Currierites can be on their game the most number of times; their wins equal a varsity athleticism, and IM rankings. treadmills, ellipticals, and a plethora of weights. mentally and physically thanks to an active whopping 21. Hopefully they can continue the After much debate the final rankings can Add to that the Andy Warhol-esque depictions Wellness Committee. momentum from last year’s win and move up on be seen below. of Leverett IM crew and you’ve got a top-notch Currier is also the home of the amazing varsity next year’s list.



Pretty much every athlete lives in Eliot. If you have any interest at all in athletics, we recommend that you head over to Eliot’s d-hall right now and drink the PowerAde, because there is definitely something in it. Maybe having the glorious “gate swipe” and being so close to the athletic complex on the other side of the river proves too much of a temptation to Harvard students, who decide to take the journey and get in touch with their inner workout god. Some of the key contributors to Eliot’s athletic glory include dual athlete Matt Brown ‘15 who plays both football and basketball, Obum ‘Boom’ Obukwelu ‘15 an esteemed member of the gold pants (read: football), distance runner Kellen Blumberg ‘14, and sabre fencer Elena Helgiu ‘14. Whatever it is, Eliot is filled to the brim with individuals possessing a Go Crimson headshot. In addition to varsity athletes, Eliot also boasts proximity to the Malkin Athletic Center, strong intramural sport spirit, and a high quality gym.


Dunster has a reputation for being welcoming to bros and fem-bros: its proximity to the River and later dinner hours welcome athletes seeking post-practice nutrition. Tight end Cameron Brate ’14, basketball’s Steve Moundou-Missi ’15, and almost half of the men’s volleyball team call Dunster home. The labyrinthine abyss of Dunster’s basement reveals a number of athletic facilities for both casual gym-goers and aspiring linebackers. A weight room, a cardio room, basketball courts, and an erg room give Dunster some of the most diverse athletic facilities of any house. Dunster’s abundance of squash courts draw the jauntily white-clad from across campus. Moose IMs have proved highly successful, capturing both football and basketball A championships this year, placing them in contention for the Straus Cup.


Mather welcomes the athletic with open,

concrete arms. One reason Mather’s dining hall is so difficult to navigate is the omnipresent obtrusion of space caused by the wide shoulders of bros. Home to a good number of football players — including starting kicker David Mothander ’14 who recently participated in Harvard’s Pro Day— rowers, lacrosse players, and ruggers, Mather could be the new Kirkland (if not for the perennial mecca of Harvard athletes, Eliot). For those non-athletes who feel the need to


facility for those who want to work out but are too lazy to walk to the MAC. Lev’s Wellness Tutors are a strong presence in the house, offering weekly yoga classes and reaching out to the House to make sure their offerings are in line with student interest. Basketball is especially important to Leverett, as the House can call Jeremy Lin ’10 and Secretary of Education (and former Harvard Men’s Basketball Captain) Arne Duncan ’87 its own. Housemaster Ann Georgi is known throughout Leverett as Coach for her staunch dedication to the success of Lev’s IM teams, particularly basketball. In the last few years, members solid cohorts of both men’s and women’s basketball have called Lev home, including sophomore standout and member of the Ivy League, NCAA-tournament bound men’s basketball team Siyani Chambers is among the Leverites. Perhaps the renovation should install a few courts in the basement!


Pfoho, Pfo-sho! Pforzheimer House definitely deserves its rank as the most athletic Quad House. Not only does Pfoho have an amazing dance studio, but Pfoho also has an extensive weight room that is separate from the gym. Even though Pfoho has never won a Straus Cup and they are currently ranked number 11 in the standing, Pfoho has some amazing student-athletes to make them 5th on our list. Paul Stanton, Jr. ‘16, a running back, already has an amazing record in his second season with the Crimson. Stanton is second in the Ivy League for most number of touchdowns at 17 and honored at the Fall Academic All-Ivy League team. Pfoho should also brag on Harvard men’s soccer goalie Evan Mendez ‘16 for having a shutout game against Columbia in addition to earning first team All-Ivy League honors. Hopefully Pfoho will be able to rally and move up in the IM rankings.


Lowell is an athletic powerhouse. Inside of A-entry is a rock-climbing wall. You did read that right. For only twenty dollars per semester, you can climb in Lowell any weeknight from five to eleven. If that’s not enough, the basement of Lowell also houses a squash court. In terms of intramurals, Lowell is acceptable. The House has won a Straus Cup within the last ten years; however, they currently sit in ninth place in the current standings. Then again, if you had that climbing wall and squash courts in your house, would you compete in intramurals? One



athletic prowess found in men’s basketball team captain Brandyn Curry ‘14. Hopefully Curry’s Despite having won the Straus Cup 7 years in athleticism will inspire the rest of Currier to up their game in the Straus Cup standings; currier a row and being the most improved team during is currently in 13th place. Good thing Currier is the 2012-2013 intramural season, Cabot currently sits in 8th place on the standings. Even though the closest Quad house to the QRAC! Cabot residents seem to be ‘happy’ (as detailed by their adorable housing day video), Cabot should With a respectable number of athletes and a be unhappy with its fall from IM grace. Cabot can boast about its recently expanded healthy amount of non-athletes, Winthrop has achieved the delicate balance of personalities gym and dance studio. With Cabot’s House Master promised by the random housing lottery. Khurana Rakesh being recently named the new Winthrop is the proud home of squash champions dean of Harvard College, hopefully this bout of Walker Evans ‘16 and Brandon McLaughlin good news will revive house spirit and get Cabot ‘14. Sophomore Natalia Hendrickson ‘16 also residents more up and active on the IM front.


contributed to the newly-varsity women’s rugby team Ivy League Championship win. For individuals inclined to get fit, a gym in the basement of j-entry offers a variety pack of equipment, including treadmills, stationary bikes, an elliptical, weights, and rowing machines. The only catch, according to the house website? You have to re-rack your free weights. Winthrop also boasts amazing IM sport spirit. Putting the “win” in Winthrop, the IM sports teams took home the Straus Cup 5 years in a row ending in 2012. Will Winthrop regain glory this season?

Quincy, Athlete to Normie Ratio: 1 to 464


Adams House may be a house of gold, but it is not golden when it comes to athletics. First, Adams’ gym is nothing special. It’s old and prisonlike if you can even find it. You have to go through the labyrinth of Adams’ tunnels to reach the gym. The only plus to the Adams gym is that it splits the cardio equipment from the weightlifting, so you do not have to feel awkward if all you want to do is run while others are getting jacked. Adams also takes its intramurals pretty seriously. As soon as you enter the main entrance, you will see an IM board on the way to the dining hall. Adams has recently won a Straus Cup and currently sits in fourth place in the standings. The only drawback to Adams’s intramurals is that of all the river houses, it is farthest from the elusive athletic fields across the river. Finally, if you are looking to find future hall of fame athletes in Adams, you’ve come to the wrong house. Despite housing Josh Boyd ‘13-14, the 140th captain of the football team, there are few exciting athletes in Adams. So, if you are hoping to find the next Jeremy Lin or Matt Birk at Harvard, don’t come here. But, hey, at least Adams has respectable intramurals; they are currently 4th in the Straus Cup standings.

Quincy, oh Quincy. Let me say one thing about Quincy. The Straus Cup has existed since 1935, and Quincy has been around since 1959. Yet, Quincy has not won once. Now, it’s not like Quincy is trying this year to break the streak because Quincy is currently ranked last in the Straus Cup. If you are looking for intramurals, don’t look to Quincy. Now, if you’re thinking that because Quincy has some new digs it must have some nice athletic facilities, you would be mistaken. Sophomore Gaby Ruiz-Colon said that if Quincy had updated its gym she might use it more. But, alas, she walks to the MAC just to use a Stairmaster. Quincy’s gym is located in the basement with no view of Harvard 13th House is killing the game on the the outside world. Happy exercising!! Quincy’s lone redeeming quality as a House IM front, currently leading the standings with a is the fact that it houses two of the best athletes whopping, 963 points! on Harvard’s campus. Ali Farag ‘14, the two-time national squash champion, and Ben Zepfel ‘16, The Harvard Independent Sports Staff (sports@ an All-American in water polo, are both proud loves sports and penguins. However, on the whole, Quincy is not doesn’t care who knows. the sports mecca of Harvard housing, and that puts it nicely.

Honorable Mention: Dudley House

03.13.14 • The Harvard Independent

The Housing Issue  

River Run has passed and the river gods have heard your prayers. Were you quadded? Are you along the banks of the river or closer to the squ...

The Housing Issue  

River Run has passed and the river gods have heard your prayers. Were you quadded? Are you along the banks of the river or closer to the squ...