Archive for the ‘Schools and Universities’ Category

And next year, we’ll ride to hounds

When I read my invitation to the Dalton School’s alumni golf outing, I initially thought it was a joke. Golf? For kids who grew up in Manhattan? Maybe for Scarsdale or Greenwich High reunions, sure, but how the heck were Daltonians expected to play a game that requires more square footage than a terrace?

When I went to Dalton, it was the least suburban, least plaid-wearing, least sporty school you could imagine. We had a few teams that played in Central Park, but Friday Night Lights it was not. You could take Modern Dance for gym credit, and you could even get out of that by signing a “Missed the Gym Bus” sheet on the Phys Ed department door. Back then, the gym was on 92nd Street, and you weren’t permitted to walk there from the main building on 89th Street because it was Too Dangerous to stroll the Upper East Side on a Tuesday morning. We’d scrawl our names on the “Missed the Gym Bus” sheet, then sneak out for coffee and cigarettes.
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I’m a Scrooge this year.

Ahhh yes finals week. The week(s) that every college student looks forward to all semester (note the EXTREME sarcasm). This semester, finals have held me captive in my apartment for days on end. Literally, going to class today was the first time I have left my apartment since Thursday. Needless to say I’ve been feeling a bit claustrophobic, and I became pretty sure that I was about to snap and go postal on the kids in the printing labs at school. My internet isn’t working (again) so I’m stealing from the neighbors wireless for a bit until the signal fades. I have just one little rant about this already extremely pricey institution in which I attend: I spent over $70 printing rough drafts of my final projects. And they all have to be reprinted. On top of that, I have a 40some page book I am in the process of making, which I’m sure will cost a pretty penny. I’m glad that all of my food money is going towards homework this month. And I don’t believe that anyone will be receiving any Christmas presents from me this year…

I hope everybody is having fun in the hustle and bustle of the Christmas season out there in the city. Maybe I’ll venture out next weekend.

NYU Moves Ahead with New Dorm; East Village Residents Kvetch

I find NYU students as annoying as the next person. They clog up Union Square, take up too much room on the sidewalk, and torture me with their life story while on line at Whole Foods (I don’t care if you’re going on a picnic – just get your water, beeyotch). But what’s the big deal about the 26-story dorm being built on 12th Street?

Although, according to the university, the building is well within zoning regulations, East Village residents are complaining that it’ll destroy the “character” of the area. What the highrise will do is bring in business, and get the kids, who are now housed near South Street Seapot, closer to the main campus.

Preservation activists say they suggested alternatives to NYU, like building outside the Village. Um, the students are already living outside the Village. So by “alternative” you meant, “exact same thing.” Shouldn’t one live close to where one’s classes are? Otherwise, why fork up the cash for school housing?

Plus, I mean, it’s not a nuclear power plant that’s going up. It’s just a school, pot smoke and all.

Some residents worry about the effect the new dorm will have on the “charming streets” of their neighborhood. I’m not quite sure 12th Street between 3rd and 4th is what you’d call charming. There’s lots of cool stuff around (like Kiehl’s on 13th Street and Saint’s Alp farther down), but Irving Place it’s not. It’s sorta hot and dusty, at least in the summer. Maybe the highrise wil do some good in blocking out the sun.

Getting Closer…

I’ve started to feel completely worthless, as well as anxious, sitting here reading this blog numerous times a day yet unable to contribute since I’m still not living in the city. So here’s a little bit about my progress as of today.
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BIOMIMICRY: Innovation Inspired By Nature

Janine Benyus is one of the foremost proponents of the sustainable movement. Today is a rare opportunity to hear her speak at The Great Hall at Cooper Union, for FREE

In her book BIOMIMICRY, scientist and writer Janine Benyus names an emerging science that seeks sustainable solutions by mimicking nature’s designs and processes, like solar cells that mimic leaves, agriculture that looks like a prairie and a business that operates like a redwood forest. She tells us about a building cooling system based on an African termite mound, and about what geckoes can teach us about adhering to walls without glue or goo. How do they DO that?

To find out these answers and more similar ones come on over…..

to this free lecture and discover nature-based innovations that will change the way we grow food, make materials, harness energy, heal ourselves, store information, and conduct business.

Date: Tuesday May 9th, TODAY

Time: 6:00 pm

Venue: The Great Hall at The Cooper Union 7 East 7th Street at Third Avenue New York NY.

Running into the Past

Do you remember the days when we used to run for our morning cheesebus to take us to school? For many, I think the rule still applies, even my mom for example has to run to catch her Q43 or N22 (express) every morning. She’ll ask everyone who is free for a ride to the bus stop, other times, if it’s too late, she’ll want someone to drop her off to the subway station which is a 20 minute drive from all the way on the border of Queens & LI.

This morning I saw a kid, not necessarily athletic, okay, he was a bit chubby and that’s why I found this amusing. As I drove comfortably away in the opposite direction, that kid was bent on catching something this morning. He didn’t seem tired, though his body weight would make me guess he should be at this point – but no – he had a clear goal in mind, to catch that frigging schoolbus and nothing would stop him.

I remember being able to do that, running while not being in the greatest shape, without getting tired. The first time I went into gym class in New York was at PS 13 (elementary school) in the 5th grade. In gym there was a running contest and I remember thinking “I can win this.” I didn’t think about the fact that I had never run before (as it counts for a timed lap race) or that my classmates were basically cheetahs in disguise. I didn’t even care that there was this buzz about Ramon, the human bullet train. I felt that their chanting this name which was not mine, “Come on Ramon!” “Let’s go Ramon!” was very unfair and also added to my determination to beat his time. They didn’t care that I had this overzealous competitive drive to beat Ramon’s time, every one of them had given up on their pathetic selves and were ready to cheer Ramon on. They had no aspirations of winning, their only aspiration was to cheer on the winner who will make some sort of PS 13 history. I lost to Ramon that day and was very frustrated that not even one person noticed my determination or will.

To that little boy that I saw this morning, if you’re reading (sorry for calling you chubby) but I hope you caught that bus little man. Much respect. Stay focused.

Money Well Spent

Oh, Pace University… just give up already.

High School Sex

Child Sex or children sex or sex by children or wrong, immature, experimental sex has always existed to some extent as far as I know. I was exposed to it when I was younger, kids making out in the hallways, some girls rumored to have not being virgins, this was elementary school – I.S. 73. Then, I went to high school, Bronx Science, and well the scandals were raunchier but we weren’t all that much older – 14-18. Lots of people were active, several people had come out, several people had not come out but openly accepted the wide realm of possibilities as far as their sexuality went. It was a time to grow and experience new things. Now, it’s not much different, but it’s just a little bit more in style, a little bit more exposed, and everyone is talking about it. New York Magazine has an article this week on my old high school’s rival, Stuyvesant. The article is about a group of kids known as the Cuddle Puddle.

The article is very long and details out the life of nothing more than a clique. This clique is just like any other clique – they hang out after school, eat together, but what’s different is their heteroflexuality. They are flexible, fluid, pansexual, and all these terms that are giving me a headache.

I do not know how I feel about young people having sex just now, but I do know that the article’s details made me very unnerved and caused some degree of concern. It was very freely that these very intelligent (Stuyvesant/Bronx Science/Brooklyn Tech are 3 of New York City’s best public high schools, you have to take a test similar to the SATs for admission) and very young kids talked about having encounters with their male & female friends.

It seems like these folks are without emotion when reading about it. It seems that feelings are hurt, but they aren’t shown. I have encountered some folks beyond their teens who have been seriously hurt in relationships that are like this, but isn’t it too early for these kids to be desensitized? I don’t know if it’s the fact that homosexuality is now very common and I don’t find anything wrong with the homosexuality aspect of it, I do find it interesting that many of the people involved claim that they are just doing things to turn the guys on or turn the girls on. Has it become that shallow? How are these folks going to grow up? What was worst was how they are raised. Most of these kids way below 18 are drinking, smoking, and hooking up in parentless homes after school. How the hell does that happen so easily?

I don’t know – it’s been freaking me out ever since I read it and the topic has been discussed on Dateline, NYTimes and other places – the topic of children’s sexuality and its effects later on in life. But if these same kids grow up to be scientists, lawyers, and politicians, and forces that shape societal progress, does it really matter that they’ll end up having really screwy social lives?

All the news that’s fit to print.

2006_1_stuylesbo1.jpg

This may just be my favorite Gothamist headline ever:

Lesbo Sluts Run Wild at Stuyvesant High!

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