Issuu on Google+


03.19.09 vol. xl, no. 19 The Indy talks housing, sub-prime and otherwise.

independent THE HARVARD

President Diana Suen ‘11 Cover art by KRISTINA YEE

Special 3

Welcome to the Housing Issue The Meowel

4

Adams

5

Cabot

6

Currier

7

Dunster

8

Eliot

9

Kirkland

10

Leverett

11

Lowell

12

Mather

13

Pforzheimer

14

Quincy

15

Winthrop

For exclusive online content, visit www.harvardindependent.com

2

staff@harvardindependent.com

Editor-in-Chief Sam Jack ‘11

Production Manager Faith Zhang ‘11

Publisher Brian Shen ’11

Technology Director Sanjay Gandhi ’10

News Editor Forum Editor Arts Editor Sports Editor Design Editor Graphics Editor Associate Business Manager Associate Graphics Editor

Susan Zhu ‘11 Riva Riley ‘12 Pelin Kivrak ‘11 Hao Meng ‘11 Patricia Florescu ‘11 Candice Smith ‘11 Jenn Chang ‘11 Sonia Coman ‘11

Staff Writers Peter Bacon ‘11 Rachael Becker '11 Andrew Coffman ‘12 Caroline Corbitt ‘09 Truc Doan ‘10 Ray Duer ‘11 Pippa Eccles ‘09 Jessica Estep ‘09 Nicholas Krasney ‘09 Markus Kolic ‘09 Allegra Richards ‘09 Andrew Rist ‘09 Jim Shirey ‘11 Alice Speri ‘09 Graphics, Photography, and Design Staff Ben Huang ‘09 Edward Chen '09 Sonia Coman '11 Caitie Kakigi ‘09 Eva Liou ‘11 Caitlin Marquis ‘10 Lidiya Petrova ‘11 Sally Rinehart ‘09 Kristina Yee ‘10

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 Diana Suen (president@harvardindependent.com). Letters to the Editor and comments regarding the content of the publication should be addressed to Editor-in-Chief Sam Jack (editor@harvardindependent.com). Yearly mail subscriptions are available for $30, and semester-long subscriptions are available for $15. To purchase a subscription, email subscriptions@harvardindependent.com. The Harvard Independent is published weekly during the academic year, except during vacations, by The Harvard Independent, Inc., P.O. Box 382204, Cambridge, MA 02238-2204. Copyright © 2008 by The Harvard Independent. All rights reserved.

11.09.06 11.02.06sThe Harvard Independent 03.19.09


special

indy

Welcome to the Indy's Fourth Annual Housing Dayt Issue! Dear readers, Congratulations! You’ve made it through the night. And for those of you who are freshmen, we congratulate you further on surviving the blocking group drama, the river run, and the 3:00 AM anxiety attacks. After weeks and weeks of meticulously choosing your blockmates in the chaotic and frenzied atmosphere that was Annenberg, you spent weeks and weeks praying (and even sacrificing flaming boats) to the housing gods to assign you anything but the Quad. But take it from us—while it may seem like your house assignment will make or break your dreams of four perfect years at college, it really won’t. Each house is both amazing and awful in its own way. It’s what you make of it that counts. So you’ve been assigned to Quincy. Yes, your dining hall will be so crowded that you might not be able to find seats. But on the other hand, you’ll probably see your Quad

friends more than your friends from other houses will. Or maybe you’ve been assigned to Dunster. True, your walkthrough room may not win the envy of anyone on campus, but take pride in the legacy of the moose— and the fact that your house throws some of the hottest happy hours on campus. Or say you’ve, god forbid, been assigned to the Quad! Yes, your house is far, but think about the sweet dorm parties you’ll be able to throw in your luxurious singles. Plus, the shuttle makes the distance seem like almost nothing. We hope that this issue will help dispel those uninformed rumors. Aided by our staff and your HoCos, we bring you the best and worst of each house. Susan Zhu ’11 offers a quick snapshot of each house by assigning an appropriate superlative. Then she fills you in on the deets with obscure house trivia. Sam Jack ’11 covers the basics—perks, drawbacks, sophomore housing, and dining halls. Kristina Yee ’10 draws the house mascots. Adam Hallowell

’09, Sally Rinehart ’09, and Caroline Corbitt ’09 offer you movie recommendations to feel out your new assigned house, and Hao Meng ’11 brings you the beats with song recommendations. And if that’s not enough to get you pumped about your house—for what you can’t choke down, Diana Suen ’11 brings you drink recommendations. (Note: Do observe the legal drinking age. For those of you twenty-one and up, feel free to drink as much as the good state of Massachusetts permits.) So venture forth and fearlessly pledge your allegiance to your new house. Chat in the dining hall for hours and hours. Show off your dance moves at the spring formal. Join your HoCo and immerse yourself into the community. You’ll be glad you did. Sincerely, Diana Suen ’11, President Sam Jack ’11, Editor-in-Chief Faith Zhang ’11, Production Manager

CANDICE SMITH/Independent

The Harvard Independent s 03.19.09

arts@harvardindependent.com

3


indy special SUPERLATIVE

SONG MATCHUP

Most Arrogantly Exclusive Don’t eat in Adams. They will eat you.

Beautiful by Akon

DRINK MATCHUP

MOVIE MATCHUP

Charles Shaw Cabernet Sauvignon 1 glass Charles Shaw Cabernet Sauvignon Hold plastic wine glass with pinky up. Sip pretentiously.

Maid of Honor Below that exterior that boasts pretentiousness, there's a heart after all.

DESIDERATA

R

andolph Hall (D-I entries), Westmorly Court (A and B entries), and Claverly Hall were all built as Gold Coast dormitories. The Gold Coast dorms were constructed in the late 19th and early 20th centuries to provide rich Harvard men an alternative to the antiquated Yard dormitories, which then lacked running water, steam heat, electric light, and indoor bathrooms.

FROM THE HOCO

NOTABLE ALUMS Franklin Roosevelt, 32nd US President Buckminster Fuller, inventor/philosopher/hopeless utopian Henry Kissinger, Secretary of State for the Nixon administration Chuck Schumer, Senator (D), New York John Lithgow, actor Andy Borowitz, co-creator, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air Amy Brenneman, actress

4

arts@harvardindependent.com

THE BASICS Perks: Of the River Houses, Adams is the closest to the Yard, so freshmen who aren't used to long walks will never have to acclimate. Before randomization, Adams was known as the "bohemian," "artsy" House, and the bohemian aura still clings to Adams, and is memorialized in events such as Drag Night and in features like the Bow and Arrow Press--a mechanical printing press used now mostly for broadsides and artwork, but that back in the day was used to produce revolutionary manifestos and the like. The Molotov Cafe provides a late-night hangout, and the Master's Residence, Apthorp House, has frequent teas and other events. Yearly events include Drag Night, Winter Feast, black-tie readings of Winnie the Pooh, Winter Waltz, and Spring Swing. Dining Hall: Adams' strict inter-house restrictions, the bane of freshmen and upperclassmen looking for a quick bite between classes, will become your friend if you're lotteried into Adams House. Despite Adams' central location, it is usually not too over-crowded. The dining hall staff is known for letting students in a little late, sometimes even pulling food back out of the freezer. Musicians often use the piano in the room to entertain diners, adding a touch of class. Sophomore Housing: Sophomore housing is reportedly generous at Adams House. Sophomores often end up in large "party suite" triples, or in Claverly. Expect "n" rooms for "n" people. Will Skinner, Adams House senior, reported that, "The square footage is two times as big as Kirkland's." Drawbacks: You'll get less exercise from walking, and you won't see as many of your friends from other Houses coming to the dining hall. But overall Adams is one of the most popular Houses and usually ranks high on freshman wish lists.

ADAMS

W

ell known in times past as artistic and individual, Adams is one of the few Houses that has managed to retain its old reputation with the advent of the random lottery. Adams was the hotbed of the protests during the Vietnam Era and continues to be a beacon of freedom and the physical center of undergraduate life on the campus. Described during its recent 75th Anniversary as a “den of sin and moral corruption” by Rev. Peter Gomes, Adams hosts a variety of events that display its decadent and debauched nature. Drag Night is always popular and comes just before the sex-infused Sweet and Nasty Dance. When asked what they love most about the House, residents offer a variety of answers: the pool-turned-theater, the walls made of 24 karat gold, the luxurious and opulent accommodations, and the extra hours of sleep they get as a result of living so close to the Yard and classes. Perhaps it is also this extra sleep that allows Adams residents to have, according to John G. Palfrey ’67, “more and better sex” than the other Houses. In addition to its possession of the only golden cupola on campus, Adams House is known for its gong, the target of all other Houses’ envy. And if you’re lucky enough to live in Adams, rejoice because you have access to the most exclusive club on campus: the Adams Dining Hall.

03.19.09 s The Harvard Independent


special

indy

SUPERLATIVE Most Likely to Stink – Cabot Fish and visitors stink in three days. Three fish stink in one day.

SONG MATCHUP You Found Me by the Fray

DRINK MATCHUP Absinthe 3 ounces absinthe 1 sugar cube Cold water Drip cold water onto a spoon holding the sugar cube. Let overflow into absinthe. Continue until ratio of absinthe to water is two to five parts. Consume and enjoy your distance from America (read: true civilization).

MOVIE MATCHUP Quantum of Solace With dorms on three sides of the Quad and a dining hall on the fourth, Cabot seems to stretch on forever, much like the latest Bond movie. Also, it’s so remote, it feels like you’ve crash-landed in the Bolivian desert – and like Daniel Craig, you’ll have to walk back to civilization.

DESIDERATA

C

abot is a type of freshwater fish with a large head and spiny fins. The shield is based on the Cabot family shield, which used the fish as a pun.

FROM THE HOCO

C

abot House is the best of the twelve undergraduate residential houses at Harvard University. Located in the Quad, Cabot is home to 345 undergraduate students, 18 resident tutors, our two co-masters, and several visiting scholars. Cabot is a center for many intellectual and social activities, and Cabot HoCo works hard to please all members of the house. Some events include spring and fall house formals, biweekly stein clubs with exciting themes, and Harvard-Yale tailgates. Additionally, at the end of Spring Semester, Cabot HoCo hosts “Dutch Auction” in which members of the house auction off various services and goods. In addition to excellent events, Cabot offers excellent housing to all grade levels (singles are usually available every year) and has a fabulous in-house gym. With a strong sense of house pride and quad unity, Cabot is the ideal place to live.

THE BASICS Perks: Cabot has a glut of common space. So much, reports Ralph Mayrell '09, "that there is practically more common space than living space in the house." Cabot wraps around the open green yard at the center of the Quad, providing relaxing views of open space and frisbee throwing in the spring. Because Cabot is more horizontal than most Houses, there is no shortage of basement space in which to put weight rooms, practice rooms, TV rooms, and the like. Cabot is also known for its yearly musical, performed in the Cabot JCR. Last year's production, "How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying" sold out every night. House Master Jay Harris is well liked.

NOTABLE ALUMS

Dining Hall: Like all Quad dining halls, Cabot is rarely overcrowded. A bank of windows look out onto the Quad, creating a ski lodge feel, especially in winter. Cabot also has a deck for al frescooutdoor seating, a nice feature when the weather is not wintry.

Umberto Eco, philosopher/novelist Stockard Channing, acress Rivers Cuomo, Weezer frontman Soledad O’Brian, television journalist Bonnie Raitt, blues singer/songwriter Mira Sorvino, actress

Sophomore Housing: Sophomore housing suites usually take the form of long, wood-panelled hallways connecting numerous rooms. In general, the room quality is on par better than the best River Houses. Upperclassmen will be blessed with even more generous rooms, and less hallway.

CABOT

The Harvard Independent s 03.19.09

Drawbacks: It's in the Quad. But Cabot's relative isolation has its upsides as well--less caterwauling at three in the morning.

arts@harvardindependent.com

5


indy special SONG MATCHUP How Do You Sleep by Jesse McCartney featuring Ludacris

MOVIE MATCHUP An Inconvenient Truth Global warming is real, but you might not believe it as you trudge to class through the slush and snow.

SUPERLATIVE Best Party Space/Most Likely to Hug a Tree Three words: Currier Tree House

DRINK MATCHUP Mint Julep 2 ½ oz bourbon whiskey 4 fresh mint sprigs 1 tsp powdered sugar 2 tsp water Mix and add ice. Drink while hugging a tree.

FROM THE HOCO

“W

hat’s the deal with Currier?” You may ask. “Yeah? Well what’s the deal with your face?” I would respond, even though we both know it’s your winning smile. Here at Currier, we’re pretty big on compliments. In fact, being friendly is what we’re all about - as a resident of one of the smallest dorms on campus, you’ll always feel like you’re part of a family. Hanging out, eating meals, engaging in embarrassing sexual encounters with each other. Normal family stuff. If you’re like me, you have an unhealthy fixation with fountains. And guess what? Currier has a fountain! In its dining hall! The point is, sometimes you can pee in it. But Currier isn’t all having sex with housemates and peeing. Sometimes we have sex with people from other houses. And it’s all because everyone in Currier has a single. As the saying goes: walk-through doubles only happen to bad people. After one bite of our dining hall’s food – known as the best dining hall on campus – you’ll be hooked. Soon, you won’t be able to go 10 days without eating food or drinking water. Here in Currier, we only have one door into the house. One door in, one door out. It means that you’ll meet every resident. It means that you’ll be part of a strong, close-knit community. It means that you will be terrified of a possible fire. And I think that’s healthy.

NOTABLE ALUMS Bill Gates, co-founder, Microsoft Yo-Yo Ma, cellist Caroline Kennedy, surviving Kennedy

6

arts@harvardindependent.com

THE BASICS Perks: Currier has an impressive amount of common space; enough to make denizens of Leverett pretty jealous. Too, their common space is less formal in character than the space at many of the River Houses, where the JCRs and SCRs can look more like museums than places to hang out. The Fishbowl, which Currier has in lieu of a JCR, is positioned so that most residents have to walk past it in order to get to their rooms, which promotes socializing and spontaneous interactions. The Bowl is also blessed with a huge LCD projector television and lots of couches, which makes it a great place for group viewing of TV shows, sports events, and movies. Other named social spaces at Currier include the Treehouse, Gilbert and Bingham Living Rooms, and the Solaria. All this combines to make Currier the party hub of the Quad and, to an extent, of the River as well. Dining Hall: Currier's dining hall has the aesthetic of a classy hotel restaurant or, less charitably, a nice nursing home. The hall is entirely subterranean, but skylights and a miniature fountain and garden in the middle of the hall bring the outside in. Sometimes at night, though, the hall can feel a bit cavelike. Currier's food is purportedly the best of all the Houses, and the dining hall staff is friendly and gets engaged in student life a bit more than most. Sophomore Housing: Most sophomores end up in Daniels Tower, and get "singles the size of Canaday common rooms" and lots of windows. Rarely, sophomores are stuck sharing rooms, but when they do have to share rooms, they often get kitchens. Drawbacks: Some Currierites complain about the fact that Currier has only one entrance, but others feel that the oneentrance layout adds to the community feel of the House. Oh, and it's in the Quad. Shuttle fun!

CURRIER

03.19.09 s The Harvard Independent


special DESIDERATA

DRINK MATCHUP

he Dunster Goat Roast started in the 1980s “as a lesson in primitive survival by former House tutor Daniel Lieberman, now a professor of anthropology. Students are taught to skin a goat with sharp-edged stones, the way our ancestors did it in the Stone Age.”

Moose Lou* Regular version 3 parts pineapple juice 1 part Malibu 1 part 151-proof rum

T

indy

Moose version 1 part pineapple juice 1 part Malibu Enough 151-proof rum to kill a moose

MOVIE MATCHUP He’s Just Not That Into You Sometimes, you’re just shit outta luck.

SUPERLATIVE Most Likely to Have Wild Sex/Be Sexiled When your room is small enough that your roommate practically lives in your bed, shit goes down.

DUNSTER

FROM THE HOCO

S

ome consider it fate and some consider it folly that our glorious house, a beacon of Justice and Heroism holding court along the lush banks of the River Charles, has a name that conveniently rhymes with the word Dumpster. But the proud few, lucky enough to be placed into Dunster, consider it a divine challenge. Too long have we lived in obscurity. The day of Dunster House has arisen. The prejudices that Harvard’s inveterate rag, the Crimson, continues to propagate have done merciless injustice, but they will stand no longer. The proof that Dunster House holds claim to the best and most vibrant community, in the face of Adams and Eliot hegemony, Winthrop IM juicing, and Leverett’s ugly towers, shall not flag or fail. We shall prove it in our library. We shall prove it in our river views. We shall prove it in our N+1 housing (even had by some sophomores). We will defend our house, whatever the cost may be. We shall rage at each happy hour that lasts into morning. We shall belligerate at our goat roast. If, which I do not for a moment believe, another house should dare claim a better community or a better group of people, then our rising sophomores, surging forth from the yard, will carry on the struggle, such that the new Meese will justify the old.

Mix and drink in large amounts. Stay indoors. *Recipe derived from Tech N9ne's "Caribou Lou" but with more 151. Courtesy of Jeff Holder '09 and Brad Matthiesen '09.

THE BASICS Perks: Dunster House has river views, easy access to the Mather Shuttle Stop, kind and charming House Masters, and a close-knit House community. Dunster's grille is open every night and serves a wide variety of foods, at prices that beat out the Quincy Grille. Dunster, with its iconic tower, is one of the most photographed buildings at Harvard and often shows up on postcards, so when you show your non-Harvard friends pictures of where you live, you'll be rewarded with admiration instead of confusion (which is the usual reaction to Mather). Dunster's legacy as the former “music” House has blessed it with an active musical society, frequent concerts in the House library, and the yearly Dunster House Opera and Messiah Sing-Along.. Yearly events like the Goat Roast give Dunster a certain Satanic flair: last year mischievous Dunsterites impaled the carcass from the Goat Roast on an Eliot fence. Dining Hall: Dunster's dining hall is the most beautiful on campus, hands down; with dark wood, chandeliers, and high-backed chairs. The servery staff is friendly, and the food tends to be of high quality. Plus the dining environment is friendlier at Dunster than at most Houses; you always seem to be running into someone you know (or would like to meet). Sophomore Housing: Ah, sorry. Dunster is home to a high concentration of walk-through doubles and triples, which makes their idea of distributing “funny condoms” to eager frosh a bit cruel. Dunster is also an old building, and the hallways and rooms can seem a bit dreary before you dress them up with colorful scarves and posters of the Beatles. If you're placed in Dunster, you're pretty much on the bottom of the heap for sophomore housing. But fear not! Dunster has been trying to reduce the number of students it takes in each year, and housing options expand each year. Drawbacks: The housing is the big drawback. The location (second-furthest from the Yard of the River Houses) is a drawback, but really the difference between Dunster and Quincy is about two minutes. Dunster's strong house community makes up for some of its faults, though.

NOTABLE ALUMS Al Gore and Tommy Lee Jones, a rooming match made in heaven Al Franken, comedian/political guru Deval Patrick, Governor of Massachusetts

The Harvard Independent s 03.19.09

SONG MATCHUP Turnin’ Me On by Keri Hilson featuring Lil Wayne

arts@harvardindependent.com

7


indy special DRINK MATCHUP

T

he Eliot House shield is derived from the Eliot family arms and is described as silver (the field) between gemels wavy azure (paired wavy blue arms) derived from the Devonshire and Cornwall branches of the Eliot family, not the Charles River! (from the Eliot House website)

MOVIE MATCHUP Legally Blonde "You got into Eliot? What, like it's hard?"

SUPERLATIVE Most Likely to Pop a Collar Preppy McPreppersons abound.

SONG MATCHUP How Far We've Come by Matchbox 20

THE BASICS Perks: Eliot, which, in imagination anyway, once served as the luxurious retreat of the scions of the American aristocracy, has kept it's preppy image, and flaunts a certain calculated class unconsciousness. The Eliot Fete is the most highly regarded and highly desired of the House Formals. Eliot also houses a rich array of amenities, including a dance studio, gym, woodshop, photography studio, art room, TV room, and a small movie theatre called 'the Golden Arm'. Eliot residents also have exclusive swipe access to a gate leading out onto the river side. The underground tunnels have been painted by generations of Eliot residents, and students can test their “Heart and Soul” playing skills on a piano donated by famous alum Leonard Bernstein. Dining Hall: Eliot's dining hall is classic in style and wellappointed. The food is nothing special, but not especially bad either. Around winter break, a 12-foot fake Christmas tree adds holiday spirit. Unfortunately Eliot brain breaks are lackluster, and the dining hall is closed at midnight, so if you're looking for a late-late-night place to study or get a pop, you'll have to go elsewhere. The Eliot HoCo says the dining hall is, “A beautiful place – plus it's always comforting to see Charles Eliot's portrait looking over you.” Pantsless dining is sometimes possible. Sophomore Housing: You'll almost certainly end up in a smallish double, triple or quad. If you're lucky, you might get a walk-through single during sophomore year. Drawbacks: The housing is nothing special, and it's one of the larger Houses, so you could end up getting lost in the crowd. Plus, monotonous brain breaks.

NOTABLE ALUMS Leonard Bernstein, conductor/composer/pianist Ted Kaczynski, psychopath Jack Lemmon, actor

8

arts@harvardindependent.com

DRINK MATCHUP Mimosa 3-5 oz chilled champagne 2 oz orange juice Pour juice into champagne. Say mimosa in a foreign accent.

FROM THE HOCO

“T

o Eliot, To Eliot we raise a glass and sing a song. By river’s side our hearts are tied to Eliot House.” I find myself singing these words anytime I am making my way back to my home in Eliot. I can’t imagine living anywhere else. We are so lucky to live in such a picturesque setting, with the river in clear view and a tower standing tall and more beautiful than the rest. Once you make your way inside you’re always likely to see the friendly faces fellow students and tutors who make a real effort to spend time with students both in the dining hall and through special programming. Our House Master Lino learns everyone’s names almost as soon as you are in the house and he often makes appearances at Stein Clubs and our newly opened Inferno Grille. The voices of our town criers ring beautifully in the dining hall as they announce the most up-to-date news on Eliot events. Best of all, as an Eliotite you become a part of the proud traditions of the Eliot Boat Club and the extravagant Fete. Floreat Domus de Eliot!

ELIOT

03.19.09 s The Harvard Independent


special

indy

FROM THE HOCO

THE BASICS Perks: Kirkland, the western-most of the River Houses, enjoys easy access to the MAC, the T, and the river. Kirkland's 'Conversations' series brings celebrities and luminaries into the House for smallscale interactions with students. Recently Kirkland welcomed the angry comic Lewis Black, of Daily Show fame. Kirkland is the smallest of the River Houses, and has a close-knit community and strong IM spirit as a holdover from the days when its proximity to the MAC and the athletic complex across the river made it a top choice for athletes. Dining Hall: Kirkland's dining hall has smaller tables than any other; many tables are meant to seat only four people. Kirkland's dining hall uses light wood and has a light atmosphere. The dining hall itself is small, to fit the size of the House, and can sometimes get crowded. Some Kirkland residents living in DeWolfe are separated from the dining hall by the entire length of the River. Sophomore Housing: Nothing to write home about. Triples and quads are the norm, and the size is not extraordinary. Housing in DeWolfe is a double-edged sword for sophomores: the DeWolfe room you get will almost certainly be better than what you can come up with in Kirkland proper, but if you room in DeWolfe and don't manage to haul yourself to the other side of the River on a regular basis, you'll be giving up social capital in the House community. Drawbacks: Kirkland's cozy smallness has the potential to become claustrophobic, especially if you decide to participate in 'Incest Fest'.

S

ize matters. People might tell you otherwise, but we Kirklanders know that it’s true. We’re a small house, but this is a blessing. The intimacy brings with it a sense of community you won’t find anywhere else on campus. After a few days in Kirkland you’ll probably know not just all the students but the tutors, the night security guard Bob, our Bernese mountain dogs Jessie and Brandi, the card swiper, and our champion omelette chef. Our House Masters Tom and Verena are always around, holding desserts and roving through Stein Clubs, chatting about wine, French poetry, and the Sox with the students. Everyone gets along, and like in Cheers, everybody knows your name.

NOTABLE ALUMS Mark Zuckerberg, creator, Facebook.com Wallace Shawn, actor Jeff Bingaman, US Senator (D-NM)

SUPERLATIVE Least Likely to be Remembered What are we talking about again?

DESIDERATA

KIRKLAND

“With Hicks House as its library, Kirkland House is one of very few Harvard structures with ties to pre-Revolutionary colonial history. It was built in 1762 at the corner of the present Dunster and Winthrop streets by John Hicks, a successful Cambridge carpenter and contractor whose family had lived in the area since 1652.” (Kirkland House website)

The Harvard Independent s 03.19.09

MOVIE MATCHUP The Dark Knight Tucked into a cozy corner along JFK Street, Kirkland seems quiet and sedate at first – like Gotham. But that veneer hides a nightly chaos underground, where the Kirkland Grille beckons to stressed-out paper writers: “Why so serious?”

DRINK MATCHUP Jaegermeister 1 shot jaegermeister Consume in one go. Unsatisfied? That’s because everything is smaller in Kirkland.

SONG MATCHUP My Life Would Suck Without You by Kelly Clarkson

arts@harvardindependent.com

9


indy special THE BASICS

LEVERETT

FROM THE HOCO

L

everett is the best house on campus. Really, we mean it, the best house on campus. We are probably best known for our fall and spring 80s Dances (mark your calendars for April 25, 2009!), when the true spirit of Leverett is revealed through big hair and tiny shorts. Donut and cannoli study breaks keep everyone going during finals, and residents of other houses come to our open houses just for the monkey bread. If the first rule of real estate is location, location, location, then Leverett is covered. Leverett is well situated along the River, smack dab in the middle of all the other houses. Depending on where you live, you can see some combination of Dunster, Mather, Quincy, Lowell, Adams and Winthrop (not to mention the Charles River) out your window. There are multiple housing options available in Leverett to suit anyone’s preferences. McKinlock (Old Leverett) offers traditional Harvard housing, complete with fireplaces and beautiful moldings, DeWolfe has great apartment-style rooms, and the Leverett Towers (though perhaps not the most beautiful structures know to man) boast breathtaking, million dollar views of Boston and the Charles River. Leverett is a welcoming community full of fun and diverse people. In addition to our great students, we have a fantastic staff. Our dining hall workers are the friendliest on campus and our custodial staff is almost too nice to us. We have absolutely amazing resident tutors who are intimately involved with all aspects of house life. Our house masters, Chief and Coach, are incredibly invested in the house and go out of their way to make Leverett feel like home.

NOTABLE ALUMS John G. Roberts, Jr., Chief Justice of the US Supreme Court Pete Seeger, folk singer/songwriter Al Jean, Executive Producer, The Simpsons

SUPERLATIVE Most Likely to Attract Tourists Looking for a Hotel Pet-friendly, too.

DESIDERATA A leverett is a hare less than one year old, which explains why the Leverett mascot is the rabbit.

MOVIE MATCHUP Lost in Translation Strangers wander past each other, in eternal states of ennui under.

SONG MATCHUP Kiss Me Through the Phone by Soulja Boy

DRINK MATCHUP Natty Boh 1 can National Bohemian Make sure House Masters aren’t around. Consume stealthily.

10

arts@harvardindependent.com

Perks: Leverett has one of the coolest House libraries; Leverett's library is the only House library with its own freestanding building. Climb the spiral stairs that lead up to the library room, and you'll find a glass roof supported by spreading white pillars, giving the impression of being under a grove of white trees. Leverites get some of the largest rooms in the River, all three years, and the upper floors of the towers (which you'll have a shot at senior year) have spectacular views across the river and back across Harvard Yard. Leverett's IM organizers are devoted and proficient, and if you participate in IM sports, your exploits may end up on the 'LevSPN' YouTube channel. Leverett is the largest House. Dining Hall: Leverett's dining hall is famous for the monstrous abstract painting that sits above the fire place. The painting, composed of spiraling textured globs of gaudy acrylic paint, draw the eye like an open sore. Famously, Leverett seniors turned the painting upside down on the wall one year. No one noticed the reversed orientation of the painting for months. The food is of good quality (it's HUDS, of course), but the dining hall staff has to serve a lot of people. Brain break is often swarmed with the physics students who congregate to absorb the wisdom of House master and theoretical physicist Howard Georgi. Sophomore Housing: Leverett doesn't have many extras or amenities, but it makes up for some of that lack by offering spacious housing, and more of it, than any other River House. Freshman often end up in two room doubles or three room triples, but the rooms are half-again as large as the ones in other River Houses. Sophomores also have a chance at scoring a quint in one of the towers; the quints come with huge common rooms suitable for epic parties. The housing in Old Leverett is only a little smaller than that in the towers, and residents of Old Lev can get to the dining hall without walking across the street. Overflow housing in DeWolfe doesn't have the drawbacks it does with other Houses, since DeWolfe is right next door, no further from Leverett than the towers. Drawbacks: Leverett has almost no usable common space, which is a big drawback in a House Leverett's size. The 'G-Spot' at the base of G-Tower contains a few old, mismatched couches that look like they were pulled from a rummage sale, a broken microwave, and a broken pingpong table. Only recently did the G-Spot get a TV that actually works. The 'F-Spot' has been under construction for a long time, and though it seems to be finished, no furniture has been moved in, and there's no working television. The JCR is nice, but formal; hardly the kind of place that invites relaxation. The size of Leverett means that it'll be hard to get to know everyone, and the inter-House popularity of the dining hall means that familiar faces might be hard to find. Most Leverett residents think of the House as a place to live, and feel grateful for the relatively generous housing accomodations on offer.

03.19.09 s The Harvard Independent


THE BASICS

indy

FROM THE HOCO

Perks: Lowell enjoys a dance studio, squash courts, and weekly Masters' Teas. The House's schedule of annual dances and events, including Yule Ball, Bacchanalia, and the May Day Waltz, are well regarded. The famous Lowell House bells ring out their changes every Sunday; join Lowell and you can also join the ranks o the klappermeisters, those hardy souls that brave the cold, damp and rain to ring the bells, including the huge “Mother Earth” bell and “The Bell of Famine, Destruction, and Plague.” Lowell's interior courtyards are the prettiest and most expansive of any House. Every year a fully staged grand opera is staged in Lowell's dining hall.

To the luckiest of freshmen -- the Lowellians of 2012: Congratulations! From the moment you walk up to the picturesque belltower, through the gates, and into the college’s most beautiful courtyard you will know that you won the housing lottery. Lowell is a house that is steeped in elegance and tradition. From the weekly Masters’ Teas every Thursday hosted by House Masters Diana Eck and Dorothy Austin to the opulence of Bacchanalia, our spring formal, the Lowell experience is one of classy fun. Boasting an ideal location, a fabulous house community, and an excited HoCo, Lowell is far and away the best house on campus!

Dining Hall: Lowell's spacious, well-lit dining hall is popular with residents and non-residents alike, but because of inter-house restrictions is rarely too overcrowded. Plus residents dispose of their trays by way of the awesomely cool “Lowerator.”

See you at tea, LoHoCo

SUPERLATIVE

Sophomore Housing: Expect cramped walk-throughs. On the plus side, the roach problem has been brought under control.

Loudest Even the musically challenged can ring their bells.

Drawbacks: The bells ring at 1 PM on Sunday and may wake you up from your hangover! Although if you're asleep at 1 PM on Sundays on a regular basis, perhaps you deserve it. The basement tunnels of Lowell are very narrow, which makes it difficult to move furniture in and out.

LOWELL

special

NOTABLE ALUMS John Updike, writer Michael Chrichton, writer/television and film producer Matt Damon, actor Natalie Portman, actress Frank Rich, columnist, New York Times Ned Lamont, 2006 Democratic nominee of the US Senate, Connecticut

DESIDERATA "The Lowell House bells, a collection of 17 Russian bells, were given by Charles Crane as a gift to the house in 1930. The bells originally came from the St. Danilov Monastery in Moscow. The bells are rung every weekend, on Sunday afternoons from 1 pm to 1:30 pm, and anyone may ring.” (Lowell House website)

DRINK MATCHUP Gin and Tonic 2 oz gin 5 oz tonic water 1 lime wedge Mix and add ice cubes. Figure out whether to feel classy or nauseous.

MOVIE MATCHUP Mamma Mia! “Just one look and I can hear a bell ring…”

The Harvard Independent s 03.19.09

SONG MATCHUP Thinking of You by Katy Perry

arts@harvardindependent.com

11


indy special

MATHER

FROM THE HOCO When the Harvard Independent asked for a blurb about Mather House, I was anachronistic, a word I mistakenly thought meant hesitant. Mather House is the best kept secret at Harvard: should I really let the proverbial cat out of its bag; dazed, confused and with paper wings glued on so that it resembles some kind of kitty-butterfly emerging from a cocoon? Half of me said no, but the other half said it couldn’t hurt because no one reads the Independent anyway. “Just don’t reveal any really secret secrets,” said my roommate from his single bedroom. He was having a lot of sex, as people in Mather often do. “What do you mean?” I asked, completely understanding the way sexual intercourse works. “I mean don’t mention our amazing river views, or that Mather has the best party scene on campus. And whatever you do, don’t mention that Mather isn’t really that far away.” He was already doing a different kind of sex, so I left and rode the elevator to Mather’s dining hall. Some people say this striking room is an example of Mather’s striking architecture. Wentworth J. Bullfinch, Mather House’s chief designer, described his vision as “a mix of the ethereal and the concrete. The latent and the not yet impending. The trees will rise up and enslave us all one day.” He died of brain problems.

SUPERLATIVE Class Clown So horrendously ugly that it's scary. And phallic symbol of a tower leads to lots of dirty jokes.

THE BASICS NOTABLE ALUMS Conan O’Brien, host, Late Night with Conan O’Brien Michael Kinsley, co-host, Crossfire Zac Corker, inaugural fun czar

DRINK MATCHUP Jello Shot 10 oz vodka 1 jello package Water

DESIDERATA In 2006, Cesar Rodriguez ate 15 pancakes in less than 10 minutes as part of Mather's Louie Cup.

Follow instructions on jello mix package, adding vodka in the step with cold water. Let sit. Admire the colors – you won’t see that often.

MOVIE MATCHUP WALL-E Mather’s architecture is futuristic, no-frills, and kind of bizarre-looking – yet it’s as oddly endearing as Pixar’s cartoon robot.

12

arts@harvardindependent.com

SONG MATCHUP Love Story by Taylor Swift

Perks: More rabidly loyal denizens you won't find in any other House. Depending on your temperament, this may be a plus or a drawback, but we at the Indy count it as a plus. Mather's distance from the Yard (and God help you if you have a class in Vanserg) is mitigated by the proximity of the Mather Shuttle Stop. A liquor store very near Mather has contributed to Mather's reputation as a hard-partying House. The brutal social-realist style of construction style also seems to have resulted in a taste for hard alcohol. Mather's Three Columns art gallery adds variety to the otherwise blank cement walls. And despite the exterior's intimidating appearance, the inside can be surprisingly warm. Dining Hall: Never crowded, because who wants to walk all the way to Mather? Huge windows look out over the river, and skylights also contribute to the open feeling of the dining hall. The food is good, the people are friendly; nothing is left to be desired in the dining department. The dining hall is open 24 hours. Sophomore Housing: Mather guarantees all residents single bedrooms for all three years, so don't worry too much about snoring roommates. Suite doors open onto common rooms with stairs that lead up or down to bedrooms, usually four. Sophomores usually end up in the Lowrise, with berths in the tall tower promised for future years. Drawbacks: You are living in an inconveniently located cement box.

03.19.09 s The Harvard Independent


special THE BASICS Perks: Of all the Houses, Pforzheimer comes closest to resembling a lower-case 'h' house. The House's living rooms, JCR, and smaller nooks will make you feel right at home. House traditions range from the cerebal (a Scrabble tournament) to the quirky (a drag beauty contest). Pfoho is also the home of the wildly popular biannual 90s Dance. Dining Hall: Pfoho boasts the only two-story dining hall at Harvard. The centerpiece of the upper floor is the “Date Table,” a table two placed front and center above the dining hall stage. Adam Hallowell '09 can't remember anyone actually having a date there, but you could be the first. Brightly lit, and, like all Quad Dining Halls, never overcrowded. Sophomore Housing: Most sophomores will be able to find themselves a single bedroom in Moors, Holmes, Comstock, or Jordan. Lucky sophomores may even be able to get a a duplex; a two-story suite with bedrooms above and a spacious common room below. Drawbacks: It's in the Quad.

NOTABLE ALUMS

indy

FROM THE HOCO Far from being frozen out of Harvard life by their location , Pforzheimer House residents, also known as Pfohosers, enjoy a superior quality of life unparalleled. From its newly selected House Masters Nicholas A. Christakis and Erika L. Christakis ‘86 to its stellar resident tutors and welcoming house members, residents bask in the glow of a fun and welcoming community. House members enjoy putting on the hit 90s Dance twice a year as well as the recently formed MAKE IT RAIN dance, relaxing in their spacious JCR while enjoying some deep pfried goodness from the late night favorite Pfoho Grille, and getting their pfreak on in the infamous Belltower Suite (complete with dance-proof reinforced bar). The more academically inclined get their pfill from pfrequent Pfoho Pforums when prominent scholars visit Pfoho for an extra special meal and an after- dinner discussion of their latest work. When they’re not enjoying the plentiful pfun of house events, pfohosers retreat to their spacious housing. Incoming sophomores have been known to find themselves living next to seniors in spacious singles as well as in the beautiful, two-floor duplexes on the top floors of Comstock, Holmes, and Moors Halls. A lucky few will find themselves in the Jordans, complete with huge common rooms and kitchenettes, or Wolbach, with beautiful hardwood floors and its own widescreen TV to compete with the HD screen in the JCR and the new Plasma TV + Surround System in the Jordan basement! Add to that Pfoho’s close proximity to the infinitely better late night options on Mass Ave. and in Porter Square and it’s clear why Pfoho is the Cadillac of the Harvard housing system!

Mo Rocca, comedian Jennifer 8. Lee, reporter with a stupid middle name

SUPERLATIVE SONG MATCHUP Crack a Bottle by Eminem

Most Likely to Suck at Spelling Later in Life The poor resident of Pfoho will most likely spell things pfonetically for years to come

DRINK MATCHUP Whiskey on the rocks 3 measures whiskey 1 handful chipped ice Pour into chilled glass and enjoy. Forget that the artic is melting.

MOVIE MATCHUP The Golden Compass A fantastic journey to the frozen north, where armored polar bears rule everything.

PFORZHEIMER

The Harvard Independent s 03.19.09

arts@harvardindependent.com

13


indy special THE BASICS

FROM THE HOCO

Perks: The popular perception of Quincy is dominated by its raucous, perennially overcrowded dining hall, but move into Quincy and you'll find a strong House community, fair Stein Clubs, and a vibrant House community. Quincy Field Day pits the three classes against one another in the kind of field day activities you thought you'd left behind in elementary school. Plus, there's the Quincy Grille, a popular late night hangout that, if you live in New Quincy, you'll be able to visit for junk food without even going outside.

Sophomore Housing: Most sophomores live in Old Quincy, with rooms on the smaller side. A lucky few live in DeWolfe doubles. You could do worse.

NOTABLE ALUMS Rob Cohen, film director/producer/writer Lou Dobbs, Managing Editor, Lou Dobbs Tonight Tom Ridge, first US Secretary of Homeland Security Phil Bredesen, Governor of Tennessee

Drawbacks: You can't find space in your own dining hall to sit down and eat. If you get unlucky, you can end up with something pretty bad in Old Quincy.

MOVIE MATCHUP Slumdog Millionaire Sophomores may think the housing in Old Quincy is reminiscent of a Mumbai ghetto, but they’ll hit the jackpot junior and senior year with New Quincy’s enormous two-story rooms and modern architecture.

DRINK MATCHUP Screwdriver 2 oz vodka 4-6 oz orange juice

SUPERLATIVE Most Push-over-y Unlike Adams, Quincy won't stop you from eating at its central location.

Blend it well. Then blend in with everyone else.

DESIDERATA SONG MATCHUP Single Ladies by Beyonce

14

arts@harvardindependent.com

Old Quincy, built in 1930, was originally called Mather Hall and part of Leverett House. The House is named after Josiah Quincy III, President of Harvard from 1829 to 1845, and its residents can be heard chanting “Josiah” instead of “Quincy” at IM games.

QUINCY

Dining Hall: There's a reason Quincy is the dining hall everyone floods to — well, there's a reason other than it's the next closest to the Yard after Adams House. The large windows and the nonterrifying artwork produce a cheerful environment. Too, Quincy has been taking steps to reduce overcrowding, banning freshmen from the hall on weekdays. Still, Quincy is one of the Houses that has to feed a large number of people every day, so it's hard to keep up with the quality of food in smaller dining halls like Kirkland and Currier.

Some say that all houses are equal. That is only true in one way: all non-Penguins are equally upset that they aren’t in Quincy. Those lucky enough to be placed in the People’s Republic of Quincy will have the privilege of spending their next three years in unadulterated bliss. Penguins don’t have to travel far to see their longlost Quadling friends: they all show up in the everpopular Quincy dining hall. The brain breaks are open all night, and Quincy’s central location makes it prime for study groups. Penguins have an in-house gym, a 24/7 library (Qube), an extensive DVD collection, and even a pottery studio. And the rooms are fantastic! The House also provides its denizens many events. Along with Stein Clubs, there have been dating games, Family Feud, and its lucky new freshmen will get to play sardines, speed-friend, and show off their trivia knowledge. The Quincy Grille is a social spot for night owls, both sober and less-sober, and the pool and foosball tables are a great way to chill out. Non-penguins, there’s no need to cry. You’ll still get to see your lucky, Quincy-bound friends. The People’s House is always open.

03.19.09 s The Harvard Independent


special THE BASICS

indy

FROM THE HOCO

Perks: Winthrop has the largest amount of river frontage of any House, which makes it virtually impossible to live in the House for three years without having a river view at least once. Dances include the 'One Hit Wonders' Dance and 'Debauchery'. In the spring, Winthrop hosts Thropstock, Harvard's version of a spring carnival. Dining Hall: Winthrop's dining hall is in the basement of one of its two halls. Outsiders rarely eat in the nondescript room. Still, there are no complaints about the food, and the space is hardly oppressive. Sophomore housing: Less than spacious. Winthrop's two buildings, Standish and Gore, were both originally built as freshman housing, so sophomore doubles are no larger than doubles in the yard. Most suites are quads, with a few doubles. Drawbacks: Winthrop's two buildings and three courtyards create difficulties in circulating through the House, and the configuration often confuses visitors who end up wandering around the wrong courtyard.

Dear Rising Winthropians, Congratulations! I am pleased to inform you that you have won the Housing lottery. Winthrop House has a proud history, from last year’s victory in the intramural battle for the Straus Cup to the days when President John F. Kennedy lived at base of F-Entryway. It continues as you join our House community. Winthrop boasts beautiful river views, an open atmosphere, the best tutors on campus, and great House Masters. Speaking of which, come down for the Masters’ Open Houses on Sunday evenings where you can enjoy Gryphon Bread, punch, and homemade pie with your future neighbors. Move-in is still a few months away, but we’d love for you to get involved in House Life. Drop by our cozy, subterranean Dining Hall and our House Committee meetings, and make sure that you attend Thropstock and the Arbella Ball, our spring formal! We look forward to meeting you! See you soon, Will Quinn and Liz Eve, Winthrop House Committee Co-Chairs

NOTABLE ALUMS John F. Kennedy, 35th US President J. Robert Oppenheimer, Director, The Manhattan Project Alan “Scooter” Zackheim, winner, Beauty and the Geek Ben Bernanke, Federal Reserve chair

MOVIE MATCHUP Rudy Just because they try so very hard.

SUPERLATIVE Most Intramurally Athletic Winthrop tends to do pretty well in the IMs. Their ego doesn't need further stroking. Jerks

DRINK MATCHUP Dirty Martini 2 oz gin ½ oz extra-dry vermouth ½ oz olive brine 1 green olive Stir in mixing glass with ice and strain into cocktail glass. Add olive. Eat olive. Realize that you now have n-1 olive.

SONG MATCHUP Sober by Pink

The Harvard Independent s 03.19.09

WINTHROP arts@harvardindependent.com

15


captured and shot JENN CHANG/Independent


The Fourth Annual Housing Day Issue