Buzzing. That’s the word.
Photo by Emily Gowdey-Backus
As I walk past the line of cars and cluster of chatting, caffeinated pedestrians, I catch a first glance through the glass door, a touch of modernity surrounded by ancient brick. Inside I see a bustling cafe, a dozen full tables, and a cross-section of the Easthampton community:
A local family complete with a stroller and impressively quiet baby. A group of Williston students debriefing after a stressful day. A group of middle-aged men in grey t-shirts taking their lunch break in a brand new place.
All of them and more fit into this old building made new, and they chat over strong coffee and bagels that make me wish it wasn’t Passover.
Valentine’s Day picked up the unfortunate reputation somewhere along the way that it’s all quantifying love on the bottom of a confectioner’s receipt and testing exactly how much a man is willing to spend on dinner in the desperate hope that he won’t spend a month in the doghouse. Like a particularly tense Christmas, but with more sexual tension and flowers.
It doesn’t have to be this way. The purpose of a gift or a nice dinner is to show deliberate and focused care for a person through a shared experience and generosity of time and effort. Not a one of these goals require paying for marked-up generic gifts or spending through the nose for luxuries. In fact, I intend to show that a beautiful day can be spent within a five minute walking radius from campus with minimal expenditures and maximal thoughtfulness.
“Anyone who has ever auditioned can tell you that auditioning is no easy feat,” says Denison Marsland-Rello ’13, who recently was cast in The Laramie Project at Williston. ”It is taxing mentally, and physically, and emotionally.”
There’s something terrifying about being judged definitively on one moment in time, whether it’s for an awkward prom-posal, a display of one’s tremendous hops for basketball, a try-out for a dance concert, or an audition for a play. In each moment, there’s a yes or a no, and even after trying one’s hardest, it’s all up to fate.
Editor’s Note: Senior Charles Frank had a fairly unusual winter break. True, about a million people come to NYC to see the ball drop, and thousands of them of them decide to film it, but not so many get to spend the evening on the Good Morning America set filming a world renowned DJ and Williston Alumnus. Below is the guest post he submitted about his experience.
by Charles Frank ’13
I embarked on this journey to the Big Apple as videographer for PorterHouse Media, a niche-market media house that works to remix and mashup content for a variety of high-level clients. They’ve produced for media giants including ESPN, Disney, NBC, E!, VH1. I was brought onto their creative team in order to help capture who the employees are on a more personal level.
There’s something wonderful about home-cooked meals, a certain nostalgia that turns a simple dinner into something so much more. With the Thanksgiving and the Christmas breaks in rapid-fire succession, the season comes with an abundance of family dinners and specialty dishes. Especially latkes. Those are wonderful.
In this awkward middle period between the two breaks, it’s easy to long for something to remind us more of home, something to tell us that we really will be throwing snowballs into our brother’s room to wake him up in the worst way possible in a few short weeks. Don’t tell him I said that.
Food seems to be the best way to jog the memory. A character in Proust’s In Search of Lost Time regained abandoned memories simply by sniffing a pastry, so why not conjure up some holiday spirit by serving some home-style meals? Nick Pattison ’14 seems to recognize this, and hopes that the dining hall will decide to serve his favorite dish, Chicken and Biscuits with gravy. The recipe seems easy, delicious, and perfect for getting back in the family mindset. Let’s see what he has to say.