For some Jumbos, alco- hol is an integral part of college life. But for oth- ers, it is less appealing.
The Coen Brother\u2019s new- est, \u201cBurn After Reading,\u201d succeeds thanks to an all-star cast.
A car powered completely by the sun made a stop at the Fletcher School yester- day during a global tour promoting electric vehicles as a means of alleviating climate change.
Louis Palmer, a schoolteacher from Switzerland, has piloted the \u201csolar taxi\u201d through a 15-month voyage that will have spanned 28 countries when it enters Canada at the end of the week,.
Palmer called the journey unprecedent- ed. \u201cIt\u2019s, in fact, the first time ever in history that a solar-powered car has traveled all around the world,\u201d he said.
Palmer was able to secure two silicon batteries valued at $15,000 dollars each, as well as solar panels, thanks to dona- tions from the manufacturers; the panels were produced by Q-Cells AG. This made it possible for Palmer and a team of about 200 people, including Swiss students, to manufacture the car in about a year.
The vehicle uses solar energy directly when in drive but can go about 200 miles on a full charge of the battery, which it relies on when sunlight is unavailable. It has never been tested during the winter.
Palmer noted that he installed half of the solar panels that he received on the car, and the other half on the roof of his home. This allows him to charge and run the car
The car can travel about 60-66 miles on \u201ca day with good sunshine,\u201d a distance which Palmer said is adequate considering that the average North American car covers about 30 miles a day. It uses about 8 to 10 kilowatt-hours of electricity for every 100 kilometers (62 miles) and travels at a top speed of about 55 miles per hour.
Fresh off a successful launch last year, the University Advancement Division\u2019s Student Ambassadors Program will nearly double in size this year and conduct four times as many alumni interviews.
The advancement office emp- loys the student ambassadors to interview alumni about their experiences at Tufts, their per- spectives on the university\u2019s direction, and their thoughts about what Tufts could do to help alumni remain connected to the school, according to Chris
Last year, eight ambassadors conducted 50 interviews, mostly in the Boston area. This year, the program will hire at least 15 people, and it is aiming to talk to 200 alumni.
Simoneau said the inter- views\u2019 sole purpose is to allow alumni to connect with stu- dents and provide feedback. Ambassadors do not solicit money or propose new proj- ects to the alumni.
\u201cThe bottom line is we don\u2019t want to dictate to alumni the programs and messag-
es that we want, but [would rather hear] what they want,\u201d Simoneau said. \u201cWe\u2019re on a listening tour, so to speak.\u201d
According to Simoneau, the program borrows ideas \u201clib- erally\u201d from a Georgetown University program by the same name, a part of that school\u2019s overarching alum- ni outreach program, the Discovery Initiative.
Corey Barr and Nancy Gram-olini, co-coordinators of the Tufts program, heard the president of Georgetown speak about the program at a conference and presented the
idea to the Tufts advancement office. The Georgetown pro- gram was created in spring of 2006.
\u201cIt started because George- town, like many schools, was thinking about how we can broaden our base,\u201d said Tim Foley, program manager of the Discovery Initiative. \u201cYou have a lot of people that feel positive about Georgetown,\u201d but that don\u2019t necessarily have an ongoing relationship after graduation, he said.
The Georgetown program boasts 60 student ambassa- dors, who conduct interviews
on a part-time basis, and a few recent graduates who inter- view full time. All together, the ambassadors average about 1,000 interviews per year.
Whether Tufts\u2019 program will reach the size of its Georgetown counterpart depends in part on its ability to obtain fund- ing. It is continually seeking to expand, Barr said.
\u201cFirst, we\u2019d like to start meet- ing with alumni from the dif- ferent [graduate] schools [and to] expand geographically,\u201d he said.
Task force drafts
The Task Force on Freedom of Expression, commissioned by University President Lawrence Bacow to craft a school-wide speech policy in the wake of the Primary Source harass- ment scandal, released its first public draft yesterday and requested feed- back from the Tufts community.
The draft outlines \u201ca statement of principle\u201d for the university, not a concrete set of guidelines for dealing with free-speech debates, according to Task Force Chair Jeswald Salacuse. It directs members of the Tufts com- munity \u201cto respect the freedom of other community members to inquire and express themselves freely; \u2026 to exercise freedom of expression and inquiry in ways that respect the digni- ty of others; and \u2026 to create a climate that is conducive to learning and in which all community members \u2026 are free from various forms of harassment and intimidation.\u201d
The draft, which the task force will amend after the community provides feedback, seemed to move away from some of the directives Bacow gave the group in his charge in January of this year.
Bacow has indicated his support for guaranteeing all First Amendment rights to everyone on Tufts\u2019 campus. He affirmed this in an e-mail to the Tufts community in the wake of the 2006 Christmas carol parody that ignited concerns about how the uni- versity balances freedom of expres- sion with preventing harassment.
The Primary Source, Tufts\u2019 con- servative magazine, released the carol, which many deemed racist, in December 2006. The magazine then released an article on Islamic funda- mentalism in April 2007 that many also found offensive. For these pieces, the Committee on Student Life (CSL) found the Source guilty of harassment and the creation of a hostile envi- ronment. The CSL ruled to force the Primary Source to attribute all its arti- cles to authors in the future, but Dean of Undergraduate Education James Glaser overturned this restriction. He
discusses worldwide journey
in solar-powered car
l\ue008\ue00b\ue006\ue009 P\ue000\ue007m\ue003r, \ue000 sw\ue006\ue009\ue009 \ue009c\ue005\ue008\ue008\ue007\ue00a\ue003\ue000c\ue005\ue003r, m\ue000\ue002\ue003 \ue000 \ue009\ue00a\ue008p \ue000\ue00a t\ue00b\ue004\ue00a\ue009 \ue00c\ue003\ue009\ue00a\ue003r\ue002\ue000\ue00c \ue000\ue009 p\ue000r\ue00a \ue008\ue004 \ue005\ue006\ue009 w\ue008r\ue007\ue002 \ue00a\ue008\ue00br \ue006n \ue000 c\ue000r p\ue008w\ue003r\ue003\ue002 \ue001\ue00c \ue009\ue008\ue007\ue000r \ue003n\ue003rg\ue00c.
On Aug. 27, 2007, Bacow sent out an e-mail stating, \u201cThe appropriate response to offensive speech is more speech, not less \u2026 While Tufts is a private institution and not technically bound by First Amendment guarantees, it is my intention to govern as President as if we were \u2026 I will work with the Board of Trustees to formalize this pol- icy.\u201d
In his charge to the task force, written in January, Bacow emphasized the need to preserve \u201cfreedom of expression in a way that pro- tects unpopular speech and ideas consistent with the First Amendment.\u201d
But Salacuse, a professor at the Fletcher School, told the Daily in an interview yester- day that the task force did not believe the First Amendment held total sway on campus. \u201cThe First Amendment does not apply to the university. We are a private university. We are a private educational space. What we tried to define is the freedom of expression and inquiry on this campus, keeping in mind that our fun-
damental goal is not a polit- ical process, it\u2019s an educa- tional process,\u201d Salacuse said. \u201cWe believe that when action takes place that may frustrate the educational process, that\u2019s not a good thing.\u201d
Yesterday\u2019s draft declara- tion states, \u201cIn addition [to government legislation], the university establishes rules to ensure the orderly function of the educational enterprise and to protect the rights of each member of the commu- nity to participate in and ben- efit from the discovery and dissemination of knowledge.\u201d
In Bacow\u2019s original mission statement to the task force, he wrote, \u201cThe Task Force is charged with recommend- ing proposed policy language regarding freedom of expres- sion at Tufts University that can be presented for adoption by the Board of Trustees.\u201d
In the interview, Salacuse made clear that the broad statements the task force has put down did not amount to specific laws.
\u201cIt is not legislation. It\u2019s not rules. That\u2019s not what we were asked to do. What we were asked to do is to draft an indi- vidual set of principles. And then individual schools would take that [and make their own
Phil Primack (A \u201970) said that the draft\u2019s unspecific language, which some have assailed as ineffective, \u201ccon- firms that this is a particu- lar can of worms that would have been better never open- ing.\u201d Primack is a freelance journalist and Tisch College of Citizenship and Public Service affiliate who taught a class called \u201cMedia, Law and Ethics\u201d in the Experimental College.
\u201cSomebody said it best with, \u2018We hold these truths to be self evident,\u2019\u201d he said. \u201cTo try to codify policies regard- ing expression \u2013 beyond those already provided by the Constitution and other gov- erning rules \u2013 is to bump up against an almost impossible balancing act.\u201d
The draft\u2019s language is drawing criticism as being too broad to have a significant impact.
\u201cWhat I honestly believe is the draft is going to have no effect on how we proceed as an organization,\u201d said senior Michael Nachbar, the editor- in-chief of the Primary Source. \u201cThey wanted to appear that they were doing something. I don\u2019t think this rule can be enforced, but it\u2019s more a rule
expression \u2014 beyond
those already provid-
ed by the Constitution
and other governing
rules \u2014 is to bump
up against an almost
Primack said he saw the language as overly general and insubstantial. \u201cMy broad reaction is, I\u2019m a little puzzled as to why this task force was even created,\u201d Primack said. \u201cHow many people does it take to change a light bulb?\u201d
Tufts Community Union President Duncan Pickard disagreed, saying that the policy needed to be broad in order to apply to all of Tufts\u2019 undergraduate and graduate schools, but that it would be
useful to have a codified doc- ument on which to base free- speech debates.
\u201cWhat it should do is just set ground rules that make this campus a safe space for expression and inquiry,\u201d Pickard said. \u201cI think what\u2019s good about this whole exer- cise is it will \u2026 provide a framework under which these conversations can take place. I don\u2019t think that it exists right now; we don\u2019t have specific language people can point to.\u201d
Pickard referred to the harassment case that started the debate over freedom of expression.
\u201cWith the whole CSL rul- ing, in the past there wasn\u2019t a standard framework that members of the Tufts com- munity can point to,\u201d Pickard said. \u201cThe CSL released a rul- ing, and I\u2019m not saying it was a bad ruling or a good ruling, but it was an arbitrary ruling. [With a statement on freedom of expression], who knows if the CSL would have ruled dif- ferently?\u201d
The task force will eventu- ally submit a final draft to Bacow, who will pitch the lan- guage to the Board of Trustees so that it can be instituted as university policy.
While school is in session, students are limited to interviewing alumni in the Boston area, but Barr hopes they will also be able to conduct interviews while at home on breaks.
Junior Adam Frank, who became involved in the program in January after receiving an e-mail from Barr and Gramolini, is a standout among stu- dent ambassadors.
Frank conducted 40 interviews this summer, most of which took place in Fairfield County, Connecticut.
\u201cI really liked meeting a ton of differ- ent people,\u201d said Frank, who has inter- viewed a range of alumni, from the Class of 1945 to the Class 2001. \u201cThe experiences are just so different.\u201d
This diversity in the range of alumni\u2019s backgrounds bespeaks the systematic formula the University Advancement Division uses in selecting interviewees. Working within geographical con- straints, the office targets alumni who have fallen out of communication or who have consistently not responded to invitations to events.
Ambassadors have conducted inter- views with 20 percent of the selected alumni, compared to Georgetown\u2019s 15 percent success rate, Barr said.
Alumni interviewees first receive a letter inviting them to participate in the program, then a call from an ambassador. \u201cA lot of people I can never contact\u201d due to a wrong number or alumni failing to returning calls, Frank said. For those he does get in touch with, \u201cthe reception is good.\u201d
Sometimes, alumni will offer very specific suggestions on how they would like to stay connected to the universi- ty.
Simoneau reports receiving posi- tive feedback from alumni about the Student Ambassadors Program, and about their alma mater.
His findings match what other ambassadors have reported. Out of 50 interviews last semester, Simoneau estimates that there were only one or two alumni who had mostly negative thoughts about the school. \u201cWe still learned from them,\u201d he added.
end of 2009, should be able to reach speeds of up to 155 miles per hour. This should bolster its chances in a planned around- the-world race.
Palmer said the car underscores the increasing viability of innovative, clean energies that can help to reverse the effects of climate change.
Sarah Hammond Creighton, the program director at Tufts\u2019 Office of Sustainability, said in her introduction to Palmer\u2019s remarks that the vehicle provides a concrete example of energy innovation at work.
\u201cThe efforts of the solar taxi are a phe- nomenal way to get people engaged in things,\u201d Creighton said.
She pointed to Tufts\u2019 efforts to address climate change with programs such as research on electric cars, an electric lawn- mower, and LED lighting systems. She noted that 100 percent of Tufts\u2019 energy comes from natural gas and hydropower, resources that she said cut carbon emis- sions in half.
Had Palmer paid for the car himself, it would have cost him upwards of $60,000 dollars, but if mass-produced, the price to consumers would be much more manage- able. The car could potentially be manufac- tured for $10,000 and have enough electric- ity to drive 10,000 miles a year, he said.
Palmer also said that the same amount of land used to produce ethanol fuel for a car to travel 20,000 miles could collect enough solar power for the same vehicle to
travel 1.4 million miles, provided that the land is covered with solar panels and not corn stalks.
After leaving Switzerland, Palmer trav- eled through Europe, Asia and the United States, hosting personalities ranging from Jay Leno to U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon in his solar-powered car.
During his travels, Palmer observed that Germany was the most advanced country in terms of voltaic solar panels that are used for direct electrical energy, while Turkey was the leader in solar thermal panels that are used for heating.
Still, Palmer said that China is at the forefront of the nascent solar energy indus- try, noting a proliferation of new buildings there with solar thermal heating on top.
China is also the only country to mass produce the silicon batteries needed for solar cars, an undertaking which is essential to bring the price of the batteries down.
Japan barred the solar taxi from entering the country because of an unresolved dis- pute originating in World War II that con- cerns Swiss-licensed cars, but Palmer said that Japanese car companies are already capable of harvesting the benefits of solar power.
\u201cThey know how to do it. They don\u2019t have to ask a Swiss schoolteacher how to do it,\u201d he said, adding that increasing demand for electric vehicles among the people is the best way to effect change.
\u201cWhat gives me hope [is that] no matter which country, there\u2019s so much awareness [about] global warming,\u201d he said.
a \ue003\ue002m\ue000\ue007\ue002 t\ue00b\ue003\ue00a\ue009 \ue009\ue00a\ue00bd\ue002n\ue00a r\ue002p\ue008r\ue00a\ue002d \ue000 \ue009\ue00a\ue008\ue007\ue002n \ue007\ue000p\ue00a\ue008p \ue00a\ue008 \ue00a\ue004\ue002 t\ue00b\ue003\ue00a\ue009 un\ue005v\ue002r\ue009\ue005\ue00a\ue00c P\ue008\ue007\ue005c\ue002 D\ue002p\ue000r\ue00am\ue002n\ue00a (tuPD) \ue008n s\ue002p\ue00a. 11. t\ue004\ue002 \ue007\ue000p\ue00a\ue008p w\ue000\ue009 \ue009\ue00a\ue008\ue007\ue002n \ue008n s\ue002p\ue00a. 9 w\ue004\ue002n \ue00a\ue004\ue002 \ue005nd\ue005v\ue005d\ue00b\ue000\ue007 \ue007\ue002\ue003\ue00a \ue000 c\ue007\ue000\ue009\ue009r\ue008\ue008m \ue005n \ue00a\ue004\ue002 t\ue005\ue009c\ue004 l\ue005\ue001r\ue000r\ue00c. s\ue004\ue002 r\ue002\ue00a\ue00brn\ue002d 20 m\ue005n\ue00b\ue00a\ue002\ue009 \ue007\ue000\ue00a\ue002r \ue00a\ue008 \ue003\ue005nd \ue004\ue002r c\ue008mp\ue00b\ue00a\ue002r m\ue005\ue009\ue009\ue005ng.
t\ue004\ue002 \ue005nd\ue005v\ue005d\ue00b\ue000\ue007 \ue000\ue009\ue006\ue002d \ue00a\ue004\ue002 \ue008\ue00a\ue004\ue002r p\ue002\ue008- p\ue007\ue002 \ue005n \ue00a\ue004\ue002 r\ue008\ue008m, \ue001\ue00b\ue00a \ue00a\ue004\ue002\ue00c \ue009\ue000\ue005d \ue00a\ue004\ue002\ue00c \ue004\ue000d n\ue008\ue00a \ue009\ue002\ue002n \ue000n\ue00c\ue00a\ue004\ue005ng. s\ue004\ue002 w\ue000\ue005\ue00a\ue002d \ue000 \ue003\ue002w d\ue000\ue00c\ue009 \ue00a\ue008 c\ue008n\ue00a\ue000c\ue00a \ue00a\ue004\ue002 p\ue008\ue007\ue005c\ue002 \ue005n c\ue000\ue009\ue002 \ue009\ue008m\ue002\ue008n\ue002 \ue009\ue004\ue002 \ue006n\ue002w \ue004\ue000d \ue00a\ue000\ue006\ue002n \ue00a\ue004\ue002 c\ue008mp\ue00b\ue00a\ue002r \ue000nd w\ue000\ue009 \ue004\ue008\ue007d\ue005ng \ue008n\ue00a\ue008 \ue005\ue00a \ue003\ue008r \ue004\ue002r, \ue000cc\ue008rd\ue005ng \ue00a\ue008 tuPD sg\ue00a. R\ue008\ue001\ue002r\ue00a McC\ue000r\ue00a\ue004\ue00c.
tuPD \ue008\ue003\ue003\ue005c\ue002r\ue009 r\ue002\ue009p\ue008nd\ue002d \ue00a\ue008 \ue000 c\ue000\ue007\ue007 \ue000\ue00a 10:40 p.m. \ue008n s\ue002p\ue00a. 13 \ue000\ue001\ue008\ue00b\ue00a \ue003\ue008\ue00br \ue008r \ue003\ue005v\ue002 w\ue004\ue005\ue00a\ue002 m\ue000\ue007\ue002\ue009 w\ue004\ue008 \ue004\ue000d \ue006n\ue008c\ue006\ue002d \ue008v\ue002r \ue009\ue008m\ue002\ue008n\ue002\u2019\ue009 m\ue008\ue00a\ue008rc\ue00cc\ue007\ue002 \ue000nd d\ue000m\ue000g\ue002d \ue00a\ue004\ue002 \ue009\ue005d\ue002 m\ue005rr\ue008r. a w\ue004\ue005\ue007\ue002 \ue007\ue000\ue00a\ue002r, \ue00a\ue004\ue002 \ue008\ue003\ue003\ue005c\ue002r\ue009 \ue005d\ue002n\ue00a\ue005\ue003\ue005\ue002d \ue00aw\ue008 p\ue002\ue008p\ue007\ue002 \ue003r\ue008m \ue00a\ue004\ue002 \ue000\ue003\ue008r\ue002- m\ue002n\ue00a\ue005\ue008n\ue002d gr\ue008\ue00bp, \ue000\ue007\ue007 \ue008\ue003 w\ue004\ue008m w\ue002r\ue002 t\ue00b\ue003\ue00a\ue009 \ue009\ue00a\ue00bd\ue002n\ue00a\ue009.
on\ue002 \ue008\ue003 \ue00a\ue004\ue002 \ue005nd\ue005v\ue005d\ue00b\ue000\ue007\ue009 \ue000dm\ue005\ue00a\ue00a\ue002d \ue00a\ue004\ue000\ue00a \ue004\ue002 \ue004\ue000d \ue001\ue002\ue002n w\ue005\ue00a\ue004 \ue00a\ue004\ue002 gr\ue008\ue00bp \ue001\ue00b\ue00a \ue009\ue000\ue005d \ue004\ue002 w\ue000\ue009 \ue008n\ue007\ue00c \ue00ar\ue00c\ue005ng \ue00a\ue008 p\ue005c\ue006 \ue00bp \ue00a\ue004\ue002 m\ue008\ue00a\ue008rc\ue00c- c\ue007\ue002. h\ue002 \ue009\ue00bpp\ue007\ue005\ue002d \ue00a\ue004\ue002 n\ue000m\ue002 \ue008\ue003 \ue00a\ue004\ue002 p\ue002r\ue009\ue008n w\ue004\ue008 \ue000\ue007\ue007\ue002g\ue002d\ue007\ue00c \ue006n\ue008c\ue006\ue002d \ue005\ue00a \ue008v\ue002r.
a\ue009 \ue00a\ue004\ue002 \ue005nc\ue005d\ue002n\ue00a \ue008cc\ue00brr\ue002d \ue008\ue003\ue003 c\ue000mp\ue00b\ue009 \ue005n \ue00a\ue004\ue002 s\ue008m\ue002rv\ue005\ue007\ue007\ue002 P\ue008\ue007\ue005c\ue002 D\ue002p\ue000r\ue00am\ue002n\ue00a\u2019\ue009 j\ue00br\ue005\ue009- d\ue005c\ue00a\ue005\ue008n, \ue000\ue007\ue007 \ue00a\ue004\ue002 \ue005n\ue003\ue008rm\ue000\ue00a\ue005\ue008n, \ue005nc\ue007\ue00bd\ue005ng \ue00a\ue004\ue002 \ue005nd\ue005v\ue005d\ue00b\ue000\ue007\u2019\ue009 n\ue000m\ue002, w\ue000\ue009 \ue00a\ue00brn\ue002d \ue008v\ue002r \ue00a\ue008 \ue00a\ue004\ue000\ue00a d\ue002p\ue000r\ue00am\ue002n\ue00a, McC\ue000r\ue00a\ue004\ue00c \ue009\ue000\ue005d.
Beer pong, keggers and pub nights are a regular part of campus life for the vast majority of college students. According to a study conducted in 2000 by the National Institute on Alcohol Abuse and Alcoholism, 88 percent of college students, including those under the legal drinking age, have consumed alcohol.
Junior Maris Mann-Stadt said her decision to abstain from alcohol stems from personal preferences.
\u201cI don\u2019t really have any interest in it,\u201d Mann-Stadt said. \u201cI don\u2019t like the taste of alcohol, and I don\u2019t see a point in drinking if I don\u2019t like the taste of it. I also don\u2019t like to not be in control of myself, and if I\u2019m under the influence, I have less control over what I do.\u201d
Traumatic experiences experiment- ing with alcohol led junior Melissa Romanus to avoid drinking for several years.
\u201cIn my junior year of high school, I got alcohol poisoning the first time I ever drank and almost died,\u201d Romanus said. \u201cI didn\u2019t drink for a very long time and was kind of sickened by the smell and stuff.\u201d
\u201cI feel uncomfortable with the binge drinking culture in college because it puts people in situations that they wouldn\u2019t otherwise allow themselves
In an age when \u201cgreen\u201d has transcended the bounds of color, many people now choose services and prod- ucts solely based on their eco-friendly implications. Edun LIVE on Campus, a socially conscious T-shirt distribution company, paired this knowledge with social justice issues in order to create a student group root- ed in conscious consumer- ism.
Edun LIVE on Campus (ELOC) shirts are created, manufactured and pack- aged in sub-Saharan Africa, providing jobs and econom- ic stability to the region.
These sustainable shirts found their way to Tufts when junior Tisch Scholar Sarah Ullman first heard about the organization at the Clinton Global Initiative Conference in New Orleans in March during a session on poverty alleviation.
\u201cOne of the panelists \u2014 aside from President Bacow, actually \u2014 was Jackie Roberts, who is the President of Edun LIVE on Campus at their headquar- ters in Ohio,\u201d Ullman said. \u201cShe\u2019s in charge of expan- sion to new campuses, and she was speaking on social
entrepreneurship \u2014 about how students, through their purchasing power, can make a difference.\u201d
Ullman was struck by Roberts\u2019 words, but before bringing the group to the campus level, the Tufts junior decided to see how ELOC could play a part in her personal life.
\u201cI thought, I\u2019m in the Greek system, I\u2019m involved in a lot of different things, and when I went home this past spring \u2026 I realized that I had a zillion different shirts \u2014 from events like Spring Fling, Homecoming, NQR, etc. \u2014 [which in turn] made me realize [ELOC] is a great opportunity to har- ness the power of the col- lege market and really put it towards something con- structive,\u201d she said.
Ullman decided to start a chapter of ELOC at Tufts, hoping to inculcate the group and its cause into life on and off campus.
\u201cThe structure of [ELOC at Tufts] is a student-run business that\u2019s housed under the Tisch College,\u201d Ullman said. \u201cWe\u2019re not housed under another cam- pus group, but ideally we\u2019d like to partner with other student organizations, and we have been doing that.\u201d
In addition to provid- ing all of the orientation shirts for the Class of 2012, Ullman claimed that a wide range of groups have dis- played interest in using ELOC\u2019s products.
\u201cCurrently, we have a cou- ple of exciting partnerships, both with student groups on campus, as well as off cam- pus,\u201d she said. \u201cWe\u2019ve also
been speaking with a lot of the offices around campus, and they have showed a lot of interest.\u201d
On-campus projects, like the orientation T-shirts, have also incorporated the community outside Tufts.
ing snowstorms to swing state election hype, and from baseball to beer festivals, it brazenly lumps together such disparate places as downtown Detroit and rural Kansas.
The House race becomes close in Missouri? Midwest Madness. \u201cBasketbrawl\u201d at a Pistons game? Midwest Madness. After years of being thrown into the same cat- egory as the likes of \u201cAmerican Top 40\u201d host Casey Kasem, Kevin Costner in \u201cField of Dreams\u201d (1989) and Garth from \u201cWayne\u2019s World\u201d (1992), I\u2019ve decided to own the term that so deftly generalizes 10 states contain- ing more than 60 million people. I, unmis- takably Midwestern and more than a little crazy, am taking Midwest Madness back. I am Midwest Madness.
At Tufts, there is a certain dynamic when it comes to divulging one\u2019s home- town. About half (yes, I made up that statistic) of our non-international stu- dent body is from New York City, \u201cjust outside\u201d New York City (read: any part of New York State), Jersey, California or the all-encompassing Greater Boston Area. In general, these people state where they are from freely with no embarrass- ment or pretense. They grew up where they grew up, and now they are here, in scenic Medford, Mass. Simple. Not so for the other half of us American-born Jumbos.
I hail from Cleveland, Ohio. Population: 438,000. Claims to fame and infamy: LeBron James, Dennis Kucinich, the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, the spontaneous combus- tion of the Cuyahoga River and Drew Carey (who, incidentally, falls into the later two categories).
When you grew up \u201celsewhere,\u201d it some- times feels like you have two choices: You can be overly, defensively, sometimes delu- sionally proud of where you live (Why not spend two-and-a-half weeks in Kutztown, Penn.!? It\u2019s home to the Pennsylvania Dutch Festival!), or you can debase and denigrate your beloved hometown, trashing your old stomping grounds like you did the unpopu- lar kid that you secretly admired in the sec- ond grade.
I\u2019m afraid that, at the outset of my time here, I fell squarely into the first camp. Fiercely proud of the loveable industrial has-been that is Cleveland and armed with the scars inflicted by my out-of-state cousin asking me at age nine if I was Amish, I pro- ceeded to make it clear to everyone that you don\u2019t mess with Cleveland.
Yes, I have an accent; yes, my sports teams never quite come through; and yes, if you left my driveway and drove for an hour, you would see cows but not before passing through the projects. What\u2019s it to you?
I like to think I\u2019ve calmed down a lit- tle (though I still sometimes wear my \u201cCleveland, You\u2019ve Gotta Be Tough\u201d T-shirt), and I now think of my city as I do my fam- ily: with intense, unconditional love but also with an understanding that the rest of humanity does not necessarily, and really has little reason to, share that love. Do I want my friends to meet my family and get to know their endearing eccentricity? Of course. Do I think everyone I know should spend a week with them, getting to know every fact and facet that makes up their beings? God, no. And so it is with Cleveland.
To quote Baby from \u201cDirty Dancing\u201d (1987): \u201cBut if you love me, you have to love all the things about me.\u201d So, if you love your friends, love where they\u2019re from, no matter how weird or crazy (or even wholly uninspiring) those places may be; it made them who they are. And come visit me in Cleveland. Y\u2019all have no idea.
Jessie Borkan is a junior majoring in clini- cal psychology. She can be reached at Jessie. Bokran@tufts.edu
Now bringing you back...
Please enter your email address below to reset your password. We will send you an email with instructions on how to continue.
Does that email address look wrong? Try again with a different email.