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Getting Over the Spring Break Slump

in Campus Journal by

It is now at the point in the semester when the metaphorical fan is being hit with all kinds of substances: midterms, essays, tech weeks, and anything else your professors and directors want to make up to bog you down. After the much-needed and much-missed relaxation of spring break, how does one cope with the slump caused by the combination of all these factors? Look no further than this handy list to help you get out of the Not-So-Spring Blues.

 

  1. Plan out your schedule.

Is it arguably the most annoying or stressful thing to sit down and look at all of your responsibilities at once? Yes. Is it helpful to have an allotted time in which to deal with each individually, and slowly, but surely, complete all pending tasks? Definitely. Once you sit down and make the schedule, the mountain of tasks becomes a series of smaller lumps of tasks, which are far easier to complete.

 

  1. Establish an accountability friend.

If you have friends who don’t mind receiving spam updates on your academic life, and don’t trust yourself to finish your assignments without having to update this friend, ask one to be your accountability friend. Text them whenever you finish a chunk of an assignment, send them a meme, and feel good about it for a bit before you get back to work.

 

  1. Be flexible with yourself.

Of course, there will be days in which you accomplish less than what you set out to do. This is fine – just adjust your schedule. Let your accountability friend know, and hopefully they are understanding and encourage you to charge on.

 

  1. Don’t be afraid to indulge.

You’re stressed! Just because the world around you sometimes feels like a swirling vortex of work and commitments, doesn’t mean you’re not allowed to nap. Get yourself some dessert. You deserve it.

 

  1. Spend some time doing something you love.

If you have a hobby, now is as good a time as any to practice some self care and involve yourself in it to avoid burnout. If you like to create, make something small, like art on a Post-It. Even if it makes you happy to just sit and blow bubbles while you write your pieces for the Campus Journal (guilty), it’s important to do the things that will give you even the smallest hint of joy during this trying time.

 

  1. Give yourself something to look forward to.

Get yourself a concert ticket, plan a night out (or in) with your friends, or find another event you’d be interested in going to so that you have a reason to get through the slump. Even if you don’t end up actually going to the event, it’s nice to be able to tell yourself that, if you get through two consecutive weeks of five-hour rehearsals, you will have that awesome party to go to right after that will make it worth it.

 

These, among other things, are just some tips to help your mental health and well-being during the Spring Slump. If you need additional resources to help you plan and execute your work, contact a S.A.M., and they should be able to help. If you feel like your mental health is still suffering, consider reaching out to friends and mentors for support, or making a C.A.P.S. appointment. Stay safe during this Spring Slump, and remember that the semester will look up once you get the chance to breathe.

Swarthmore men’s golf travels to (not so) sunny Florida

in Sports by

When someone brings up “spring break trip to Florida,” beaches, parties, and sunny weather tend to come to mind. Well, over spring break this year, the men’s golf team did exactly that, a spring break trip to Florida, but without the beaches, parties, and even, at times, without the sun.

Departing on Sunday, March 11, the Swarthmore golf team and their two coaches flew to 59-degree Jacksonville, and then drove an hour south to the World Golf Village (WGV), a golf resort in St. Johns County, Florida. Created by the PGA Tour in 1998, the WGV boasts the World Golf Hall of Fame, along with two 18-hole championship courses: the Slammer & Squire and the King & Bear.

The Slammer & Squire was built as a collaborative effort between Sam Snead and Gene Sarazen. The two former PGA Tour stars shared a desire to build a course that rewards good shots while preserving the area’s natural beauty.

The King & Bear, on the other hand, is the only course in the world that has been co-designed by golf legends Arnold Palmer and Jack Nicklaus. It offers a mixture of two different design styles. In Florida Golf Magazine, Palmer expressed his opinion of the course.

“The holes at The King & The Bear have a variety and blend of Jack’s and my ideas that resulted in an example of golf course architecture that may not be attempted again.”

The front nine sports an open, undulating layout that honors the heritage and history of St. Augustine. The back nine is more “traditional Florida,” with 200-year-old oaks and numerous water bodies in play.

In the six days that the men’s golf team was at the WGV, they played six rounds of 18 holes, alternating between both of these courses. The trip was aimed at having the team play a lot of golf before the season picks up in the spring.

The weather in the Northeast hasn’t been so favorable, and as a result, several golf courses in the area have delayed their opening dates. Traveling to Florida was a great way to get in rounds of golf in order to prepare the team for the abrupt season start shortly after spring break.

Besides just improving their games, the trip to Florida also provided a fantastic bonding experience for the entire team. Spring break was the first time that the new first-years on the team got a chance to meet Vamsi Damerla ’19, a captain who was abroad during the first semester.

Vice-captain Daniel Altieri ’19 expressed his opinion on the trip.

“Spring break is a great time for the whole team to spend quality time together. Between practicing during the day and hanging out at night, it was great for all of us to have this trip, especially since the intense nature of the spring season doesn’t allow for much downtime.”

Vice-captain Nick DiMaio ’19 also shared a similar attitude.

“When we were off the course, we had a great time watching March Madness together. As an upperclassman, it was great to get to know the young players a little better and build team chemistry.”

Towards the end of the trip, the team bonded at TopGolf, a golf range with a sports-bar vibe, which included food, drinks, and TV. It gives people the opportunity to have casual competitions, as several large, user-friendly target areas out on the range are able to register the microchipped balls hit by players.

On Friday, the team played a final round at the Slammer & Squire and headed back to the Jacksonville airport to fly back to Swarthmore. The trip to Florida was successful in improving the players’ games, bringing the team together, and preparing them for the upcoming season.

The first tournament of the spring will be held this weekend. Half of the team will travel to Hershey, Pa., to compete in the Hershey Cup, while the other half will be heading to Williamstown, N.J., to play at Arcadia Invitational.

The team seem to be in great shape for these tournaments and those to follow. Altieri gave his thoughts on the 2018 season.

“I believe that this team is something special. Last year, coming in second in the conference tournament showed us that we can compete with the other guys out there. Our solid play in the fall makes me excited for how we can play this spring, and come the end of April, the rest of the conference will see what we can do.”

DiMaio highlighted the talent he sees in the Juniors and first-years on the team.

“We are expecting big things for this season. With a solid core of junior players and the addition of some key freshmen, we have our eyes set on making NCAAs this year.”

All in all, the men’s golf team is optimistic for the coming season. Fresh off of six rounds of golf in Florida, the team feel prepared to bring out their best and bring the conference championship to Swarthmore.

Spring Break To Do List

in Campus Journal by

Spring is upon us. The weather may be unreliable and unpredictable, I may have watched a huge tree fall outside my window that overlooks Willets hill, but hey, at least spring break is upon us. I am placing great emphasis on the word “break” because sadly, most of us will not take advantage of it. So this week’s article is dedicated to spicing up your break. I have thus compiled a spring break bucket list. Call me cheesy, but you will thank me later. In order for your spring break to be amazing, you must adhere to this list.You can only return back to Swarthmore’s campus once these 10 things are completed.

1. Take a bath.

Turn the knob to a comfortable temperature setting and let the water fill the tub. Pour some bubbles in, dim the lights, and turn your speaker on. Play an opera playlist, close your eyes, and remember that bathtubbing is an art. If you do not have a bathtub, like myself, another option is to borrow your neighbor’s blow up pool. Not saying I do this, but a reliable source tells me it does the trick.

2. Get a haircut.

Come back fresh. Spring is the season for growth so give your hair the opportunity to grow by trimming your hair.

3. Make a movie that stars Cara Delevingne.

She is beautiful and we (me) all want to see her more on the big screen. Do

this not for yourself but for the greater good of all humanity, please.

4. Write a novel.

Mary Shelley wrote “Frankenstein” when she was 20. You can too! Maybe your work won’t be as amazing as one of my FAVORITE books “Frankenstein”, but hey, cheers to you if it is.

5. Run a marathon.

Just one.

6. Write a symphony.

The audience closes their eyes and can hear the sound of the violin flowing throughout their body. The saxophone comes next and boom, suddenly the audience feels sexy and ready to take on the world. Next thing they know the percussions and symbols come and they can’t help but move their whole body when they crash. BOOM sound the trumpets, BOOM where did that harp come from, and DANG ending it with a bang on some beatboxing. YOU could create that experience for someone this spring break.

7. Go skinny dipping in the ocean with the Little Mermaid.

Hahahaha if you actually succeed in doing this somehow, please let me know. Ariel was my first crush you know.

8. Sing a duet with Andrea Bocelli.

If you do not know who this beautiful man is, stop what you are doing right now

and google him. He is an Italian opera singer who has captured my heart

forever. His voice is truly mesmerizing and could change your life forever.

Maybe I cried the first time I heard him sing, or maybe I didn’t. Regardless, that man has captured my heart forever — normally something only women can do for me, soooo this is big.

9. Recreate “The Starry Night” by Vincent Van Gogh.

This task you HAVE to do on the ceiling of McCabe because when our brains

are melting away in that space, we can at least look up at something pretty and

hopeful.

10. (Read with no stops, please.) Go to a 2 Chainz concert and become friends with him and then ask him if he needs a babysitter and if he does move to Atlanta, GA. and become that babysitter and then maybe just MAYBE you can become friends with 2 Chainz one day.

All that was needed to be said on this has been said.

 

Some would say that there is no “best” spring break plan or experience. But there definitely is. I just single-handedly gave you the 10 steps you need to accomplish in order to have the “best” spring break. This article is not biased at all–this is all fact. Hard, scientific, proven fact. I wish you all luck ,and may the best Swarthmore student win. But, may the better Swarthmore student choose how to spend their 2018 spring break.

Totally Legitimate, Real Tips for Spring Break

in Campus Journal by

Spring Break, (n): A week designed for students to either get drunk in Fort Lauderdale or return home so that family members can judgmentally ask whether they got an actual, paid internship for the summer.

 

To my fellow Swatties who seek to escape that bleak binary, I would like to share some very real, absolutely sincere and serious advice on delightful activities to enjoy during spring break. I decline all responsibility for any injuries, physical or emotional, that may be caused if you choose to act on my advice. Have a fun break!

 

  1. Roll around in a field of flowers to fight off those pollen allergies.

 

 

 

 

 

Alternatively, find one of these.

 

Nothing is worse than spending a cold winter sneezing and snivelling, then having it start all over again come springtime and pollen allergies. What better way to get rid of them than by direct exposure? Dramatically roll down a hill of daisies. The hours of sneezing and watery eyes will most certainly be worth it when you find you’ve been permanently cured of your pollen allergies. If my highly scientific theory is proven wrong, at least you will have gotten a fun afternoon out of it.

2. Host a social justice egg hunt to guilt-trip everyone else

For any well-intentioned, socially conscious WASPs out there, here is a chance to celebrate Easter with a clear conscience. If you have the budget, buy some expensive, fair-trade, vegan chocolate. Sprinkle it all around the Easter hunting grounds, with small notes detailing just how much trouble it was to obtain them, just to remind everyone of your moral superiority. Alternatively, trick your friend into believing that chocolate awaits them, but just leave pamphlets and fact sheets about horrifying working conditions in cocoa farms. That’ll show your mom how serious you are about ending unethical dietary habits!

2. Save college students from the specter of spring break binge drinking

This is for those of you who would like to unleash your Prohibition-era Carrie Nation tendencies. But maybe try a more subtle approach than wielding a hatchet at hapless bar owners.

Find a relatively large group of drunken college students. Hopefully you live in a town that is a favorite of spring break roamers. Have someone stage an accident, or parade around an especially cute dog. When they are distracted, snatch the beer cans and tequila bottles. Pour out whatever is inside (or save it for a drunken night with your old high school friends), and replace it with your liquid of choice. Run away and savor the knowledge that, thanks to you, there will be that many less DUIs in the world.

4. Start raising chickens or rabbits on your roommate’s side of the room

Who doesn’t love their roommate? This spring break, do something to solidify your friendship and reaffirm your bond. Spring cleaning is boring; try something original, like converting their side of the room into a rabbit hutch or chicken coop. Whatever annoyance they may feel at sharing their pillow with a large, sharp-beaked hen will be outweighed by the promise of fresh-laid eggs every morning. And who cares about rabbit droppings, when you can cuddle the fluffy little creature to your heart’s content? If, somehow, your roommate is still not enthused, remind them that some people have emotional support peacocks. By comparison, you’re not asking for much.

5. Organize a fun, childhood-themed karaoke

Everyone loves karaoke. But you know what can make it extra fun? Childhood songs. Maybe you and your friends can all engage in “The Itsy-Bitsy Spider,” elaborate gestures included. Or maybe you just want to move everyone with your heartrending interpretation of “Twinkle Twinkle Little Star” (and pray no smartass Astronomy major ruins your childhood by explaining what, exactly, a star is). For any bilinguals or international students, even better! Share the lullabies you grew up with and then sit around and realize how tragic they are (“London Bridge” – Crumbling infrastructure, “Ring Around the Rosie” – Black plague.) My own childhood favorite involves a man hooking up with his friend’s neighbor, while said friend has wet dreams about the moon. It’s sure to be a crowd pleaser!

6. Race random animals and eat them

I recently discovered, after a series of very weird Google searches, that crab racing is a thing. There’s even a National Crab Racing Association, which caters to corporate and casual events and provides “high energy, competitive entertainment.” Once the race is over, the crabs are eaten, with the winner as the prize piece. If you have no live crabs on hand, go crazy! Experiment with all sorts of animals. Maybe squirrels can be outfitted with small harnesses and made to race each other, although roast squirrel doesn’t sound especially nutritious. The bonus is, you can use this as an opportunity to get rid of any childhood pets you may secretly despise.

How to Spend Your Spring Break at Swarthmore

in Campus Journal by

 

Stuck spending your spring break at Swarthmore College when you could be tanning on Miami Beach? Don’t want to waste away in bed for a week and then feel completely worthless afterwards? Here’s a list of things you can do to ward off the Spring Break Blues.

 

  1. Try to predict the Swarthmore weather patterns.

Clearly, the weather here has been inconsistent at best. Grab a few friends who are staying with you and set up a betting system about what weather will come on what day. If you’re playing alone, see if you can beat the weather prediction app on your phone as to what you will actually see when you look outside of your window in the morning.

 

  1. Have a fort party.

This one takes a little planning. During this coming week, stock up on Essie’s snacks and other goodies perhaps the occasional reheatable warm meal from Sci Center or Kohlberg. Then, with your remaining friends (or by yourself!) create a pillow-blanket fort and vow to watch a few movies or episodes of your favorite TV shows. You’ll feel way cozier in the likely-not-so-spring-like weather.

 

  1. Make some room decorations.

if your walls have been looking naked lately, maybe it’s time to decorate them with art you made, even if you’re only spending one more half of a semester in it anyway. With some additional planning and a trip to Target you should be able to do it. Look up some designs and aesthetics on the internet and you’d be surprised at what you can do.

 

  1. Play a new video game.

If you brought your console to Swat, play a game! If you have a decent PC, play a game! If you don’t want to spend $60 to get a new game, watch some dude on the internet play the game for free! Some play-throughs can be upwards of 14 hours long, so immerse yourself.

 

  1. Start/finish a series or book.

Still need to finish that Netflix original show? Want to read a new 400-page mystery novel? Now’s the time! Shirk the rest of your responsibilities, like cleaning your room or actually reading ahead for your poli sci class, and just do something for your enjoyment.

 

  1. Name every tree.

Yeah, sure, every tree is always labelled by the school already. However, that’s not stopping you from going around and calling each tree “Barbara,” “Debbie,” “Jacqueline,” “Chad,” or “Michael.” Hard mode: remembering each of your newly-named tree friends while walking at night.

 

  1. Try to find a way to get your life back together and hope you don’t fail in a week.

Take up bullet journaling to set up a system for yourself to get work done and plan, perhaps, and then slowly realize that even though you vowed to be far more organized while maintaining a crafting habit, you definitely do not have time for a crafting habit or efficient planning. Alternatively, you can be sure to have 3 a.m. urges to get back on track with all of the work you missed in the first half of the semester, and then elect not to do it because this is supposed to be your relaxing time and by golly, you’re not going to ruin it now.

 

  1. Clean your room and pray to whatever deity/deities may or may not exist that you don’t find a pest.

Make sure to arm yourself with Raid first.

 

  1. Realize you’re probably not going to do any of this.

You’re just going to stay in bed and hope that your problems will be solved by this cycle of behavior.

 

  1. Text your friends that went away about how much you miss them.

You’ll wait for a response, but it’ll never come.

After slow start, baseball bounces back strong

in Columns/Sports by

After a slow start losing two doubleheaders to open up the season, the Baseball team bounced back over spring break in Fort Myers, Florida. The team flew south for their annual trip the first Saturday of spring break to escape the cold. After seven days of sunshine, the team returned with an overall record of 6-8, going 6-4 in Florida. Over 100 Division III baseball and softball teams from across the United States headed to Fort Myers to compete in the annual Gene Cusic Collegiate Classic. The tournament is a memorial for Cusic, a former Lee County Parks and Rec athletics manager and baseball fan. Established 26 years ago, the classic has expanded tremendously, originally having just 11 teams. Other Conference teams to attend this tournament included Gettysburg and Haverford.

The Garnet baseball team faced a packed schedule with 10 games in just six days. The trip began on an incredible high note with a walk-off win in extra innings in their first game on Sunday. Jared Gillen ’20 drove in the game winning run for the Garnet to defeat Rivier College in extra innings. The team lost a doubleheader on Monday to Defiance College and rallied to finish 4-2 in their next 6 games, defeating Hiram College, Rockford University, Baruch College and the United States Coast Guard Academy. One of the team’s losses was to Alvernia University who is currently ranked 23rd in the nation in Division III.

Other notable performances came from Conor Elliott ’19 and Cole Beeker ’20 at the plate, as well as Ryan Warm ’20 on the mound who, despite the loss, had a strong pitching performance against Alvernia. Elliot and Beeker lead the team with batting averages of .383 and .367 respectively.

Despite the busy schedule, the team was able to get some rest and relaxation during their spring break. Fort Myers is the spring training home of both the Boston Red Sox and the Minnesota Twins, offering a great opportunity to see some Major League Baseball. The team saw the Minnesota Twins defeat the Toronto Blue Jays before returning to Swarthmore on Friday to conclude their spring break trip.

Up next for the Garnet is a home doubleheader against Penn State Berks on March 18th after their game scheduled for March 14 against Eastern was canceled due to weather. Centennial Conference play will begin April 1 against Johns Hopkins University, who was picked to finish first in the conference coaches poll. The Garnet, who were picked to finish 10th in the same coaches poll, must make a strong conference play campaign to reach the Centennial Conference playoffs.

There’s Always Magic in the Air on Broadway

in Arts by

What’s the one thing you absolutely must do while you’re in New York City? The obvious answer, at least to me, is to have a Broadway marathon. Four shows, two days, and one very starstruck musical theater aficionado: here’s the story of an amazing, hectic, tour de force spring break experience that still feels a little like a fever dream.

It all began on Saturday afternoon with a rear mezzanine seat ticket to the Imperial Theater for “Natasha, Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812,” a musical based on Leo Tolstoy’s “War and Peace.” The cast kicked off the show by introducing their characters: “Balaga is fun, Bolkonsky is crazy, Mary is plain, Dolokhov is fierce, Hélène is a slut, Anatole is hot, Marya is old-school, Sonya is good, Natasha is young and Andrey isn’t here!” In other words, if you didn’t quite manage to muddle your way through Tolstoy’s dense prose, don’t worry: “The Great Comet’s” got it all summarized for you.

And then, of course, there was Pierre, the adorably bewildered, awkward count who is perhaps better known in his day job as singer-songwriter Josh Groban. If there’s any good reason to see this musical, it’s his mournful solo in “Dust and Ashes,” i.e. an existential crisis set to music and performed by one of Broadway’s greatest baritones.

The entire show was remarkably innovative. There were strips of empty space between seating sections throughout the house where the ensemble stomped, sang and twirled. They tossed packaged dumplings into the audience and handed out little plastic egg shakers, and the myriad of lightbulbs hanging over the audience’s heads were lowered to create the illusion of a star-filled sky in one breathtakingly magical moment. But the ensemble—dressed in crop tops, basketball tanks, leggings, jeans and sneakers—felt out of place with the setting and the main cast’s period-appropriate attire, especially during what I’ve dubbed “the rave scene.” Kudos to the creators for the gutsy design choice, but did they really have to have glowsticks and light-up shoes in what was supposed to be a 19th-century Russian pub?

    “We really shouldn’t,” I heard one ensemble member say to another at one point, as they body-rolled their way across the space directly behind my seat.

“Come here,” laughed the other, and they proceeded to make out in the middle of a number.

It was a wild ride. I was thoroughly amused.

Going from this chaotic glory of a musical to the sugar-sweet “Waitress” later that night (also with a rear mezzanine seat) was one heck of a transition. Based on the critically acclaimed film of the same name by Adrienne Shelly (though the musical’s book was written by Jessie Nelson), the story of Jenna, a small-town waitress and expert pie-maker who longs to escape her abusive marriage, sounds almost like the plot of a Hallmark movie. But the cast and creative team somehow managed to avoid falling into the trope of a mere feel-good show, expertly navigating their way past cliches and Mary Sues with large contributions from Sara Bareilles (a Grammy-nominated singer-songwriter-turned-Tony-nominated Broadway lyricist and composer).

Perhaps the most fun part of the show were the pies. Not the pies in the musical, of which there were many. I mean the pies being sold during the intermission for more than this broke college student was willing to fork over. Judging by the moans of ecstasy (this is, in fact, not an exaggeration) of those sitting next to me as they bit into their key lime and pecan pies, they must have been the height of culinary excellence, and the little collectible tins they came in were a cute touch.

But beyond the pies, the incomparable Jessie Mueller (Tony, Drama Desk and Grammy Award-winner) was the one who truly made the show. Her vibrant soprano voice carried all of the music with polished ease. “She Used to Be Mine,” the musical’s trademark number, is touching in its own right, but Mueller’s incredible range of emotions transformed it into a heartbreaker. Needless to say, she received a well-deserved standing ovation at curtain call.

From Becky and Dawn, Jenna’s funny and lovable coworkers and friends, to Dr. Pomatter, the handsome gynecologist with a severe case of foot-in-mouth, the supporting cast rounded out the performance with a little attitude and a lot of love to create about as great of a musical as is possible when it’s set entirely in a Southern pie diner. Which, as it turns out, is pretty darn amazing. I didn’t quite dream of pies when I flopped down on an air mattress in the living room that night, but the show definitely clung to me long after I’d left the theater for my friend’s sister’s apartment (thanks for sparing me NYC’s agonizingly high costs of living, Rachel).

The next day, I was off to “Puffs, or Seven Increasingly Eventful Years at a Certain School of Magic and Magic,” a.k.a. the Harry Potter fan musical that somehow made its way onto Broadway. Maybe it was the trademark Hufflepuff likeability or the tongue-in-cheek critiques of the Harry Potter universe, but there was something about the show that enabled it to hold its own amongst the flashing neon lights of bigger-name stars in bigger-name shows for me. It was a pleasant surprise,albeit not the biggest one.

“Oh, hey, I think know her, she was in my year at Swarthmore,” said the person sitting next to me in the rear orchestra section, pointing at a picture of one of the cast members before the show.

In the characteristically Swawkward conversation with Jonathan Hui ’12 that followed, I learned that the Hufflepuff character Sally (whom Potterheads may recognize as an allusion to Sally-Ann Perks) in the musical was played by Jessie Cannizzaro ’12. Evidently the Swat bubble doesn’t just exist at Swat, it follows you around. But the light-hearted musical was a hilarious foray into the world of side characters J.K. Rowling somehow neglected to develop through seven books (and eight movies), the central theme of house pride was made only slightly ironic by the sense of collegiate allegiance I had by having a Swarthmore graduate in the show. I left that theater with a sense of validation for being a Hufflepuff and a pretty sweet “#ThirdOrNothing” T-shirt.

That night, at last, was the final and most highly anticipated musical of my trip: “Kinky Boots,” or, more specifically, Todrick Hall’s last performance as Lola in “Kinky Boots.” I’ve been in awe of the singer, dancer, actor, director, choreographer, and YouTuber’s work for many years, so I was beyond thrilled to get to meet him at the stage door after the show, alongside a crowd of appreciative fans, and, while I was there, I managed to obtain several of the other cast members’ autographs, including Taylor Louderman (Lauren) and Marcus Neville (George).

As with most final performances, the entire show became a tribute of sorts to the departing cast member; I was glad I’d seen it once before, so my “Kinky Boots” experience wasn’t entirely centered around Hall (much as I love all that he embodies). Still, Hall’s performance was nothing short of spectacular, from his tearful duet with West End-exchange actor Killian Donnelly (Charlie) in “Not My Father’s Son” to his soaring rendition of “Hold Me In Your Heart.” By the end of the show, I was honored to have watched him in the role, and in a cushy center mezzanine seat, no less.

In his parting speech at curtain call, Hall reminded the audience why musical theater is so important as a safe space for marginalized groups. When “Kinky Boots” premiered, it was a potentially controversial ode to love and acceptance regardless of gender or sexuality, and it was rewarded with rave reviews, accruing Tony, Grammy and Olivier (the British equivalent of the Tony) Awards. Centered around the unlikely friendship between a reluctant shoe factory owner and a fabulous drag queen and featuring a kickass score by Cyndi Lauper, it was uplifting, tragic, sassy, and hysterical by turns, calling out to the audience to “just be who you wanna be” without turning it into a heavy-handed battle cry. The performers jokingly addressed the audience on several occasions during the musical as “Ladies, gentlemen, and those who have yet to make up their minds.” The theater itself upheld this acceptance of gender fluidity with a small but significant addition to the customary signs outside the bathrooms, stating “Gender diversity is welcome here. Please use the restroom that best fits your gender identity or expression.”

It is my one regret that I did not manage to acquire a dazzling pair of Price and Son six-inch-heel boots(the company is really missing out with that lack of merchandising). But, in all earnestness, everything about the show from the choreography to the set design to the witty banter between characters raised the bar in entertainment “thigh-high.” The closing number, “Raise You Up/Just Be,” had me humming and tapping my toes all the way through the long and mildly nerve-wracking subway journey to a different friend’s house to crash (thanks, Ruth). It was a sensational romp from start to finish, and I couldn’t have asked for a better way to conclude my whirlwind trip.

The complex and intricate combination of factors that musical theater utilizes in storytelling has always enthralled me. At Swat, I sweep stages, carry props, and run cues on the light board in LPAC, dreaming of a future in which I get to push the button that drops the chandelier in “The Phantom of the Opera” or track Elphaba’s movements in “Wicked” with a spotlight from a little nook in the set onstage. But it’s one thing to be behind the scenes of a production and another entirely to be sitting in the audience. I typically prefer the former, unable to suspend my disbelief well enough to truly immerse myself in the show. It’s odd, then, that I keep returning to Broadway as an audience member, captivated from the moment I watched my first show in the big city four years ago. “The Great Comet,” “Waitress,” “Puffs,” and “Kinky Boots,” they’re as different as four musicals can be, but there’s a certain quality that they all share, something I can only describe as “Broadway magic.” It’s in the massive billboards’ flashing cries, the snippets of overheard conversation in another language on the streets and the scent of overpriced meat on rice from street carts on every corner. The place itself is a living, breathing urban fairytale, and it’s always a privilege for me to spend some time in the playground of imagination that a good Broadway show embodies.

Caught up in this fantastical whirl of bright lights and brighter stars, it’s no wonder that “The Great Comet” asks its audience, “Are you ready to wake up?”

Men’s Golf Kicks Off Spring Season Along Georgia Coast

in Columns/Sports by

This past week the Men’s Golf team spent their break enjoying the picturesque Georgia coast and competing in an important out of conference Tri-Match.  

The team flew down to Georgia on March 11th, and stayed for the duration of the week. They competed in the Coastal Georgia Tri-Match held in St. Simons Island against both The College of Coastal Georgia and Villanova University.

With the match at St. Simons Island as their top priority, the team played four other area courses to prepare. Aside from the Sea Island Golf Club Retreat course that the match would be played on, they also played notable courses including the Plantation Course at the Sea Island Resort, Frederica Golf Club, Ocean Forest Golf Club, and the Seaside Course at the Sea Island Resort.

The Tri-Match would bring some tough opposition. Villanova and Coastal Georgia both have players that have performed well in their respective conferences. Lucas Trim of Villanova, a NCAA Division I institution, finished last season in the Top 15 of the Head-to-Head Big East Conference Player Standings with an average round score of 74.79. Coastal Georgia, an NAIA powerhouse, was preseason ranked 7th in the NAIA and fielded Eamon Owen in the Top 40 of the Head-to-Head NAIA Player Standings last year.

Albeit the field was daunting, the Men’s Golf team rose to the challenge. The team was led by Michael Chen ’17, Adam Agustin ’20, and Dan Altieri ’19. Chen fought as the top scorer for the Garnet with a 79, good for 7 over par. Behind Chen were Agustin with an 80 and Altieri with an 81.

Despite an average showing at the Tri-Match, Chen believes the team has many areas where they can improve their game. The team finished 35 strokes behind the second place team (Villanova), but they had to overcome a rough start. Early in the week the team had to shake off the rust from a long off-period between the Fall and Spring seasons. As the week went on the team’s performance progressively got better and the players hit their stride. The break also allowed the team to strengthen an already strong sense of team chemistry. Chen and other members of the team are optimistic about the upcoming Spring season and are eager to showcase their accrued prowess in their first major tournament.

“We always look forward to playing at such a high level of competition. Going forward, we know what we need to do to improve and compete. Our first major tournament is in two weeks at The Bridges Golf Club in Gettysburg, PA. We look to continue to improve day-in/day-out and take home the conference title,” Nick DiMaio ’19 said.

With a large portion of the season ahead of them, the team has work to do. They’re keeping their eye on the prize and are putting in the time and effort needed for a championship run. The observed team camaraderie and resilience shows a deep commitment to performing better in the matches to come.

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