November 2008

Happy Guy Fawkes Day!

Though today was a most typical Wednesday- full of classes, meetings, friends, work and play- I have had to step back at many moments throughout the day and remind myself that I have just been sewed into the patchwork quilt of history. Last night, students gathered in dorm lounges, classrooms, and Council Chambers (the big lecture hall) to watch the election results come in. My friends and I were a few of the dozens of students in C.C. and I wish I could express the energy that filled that room. As each state’s result came in, the volume in the room rose above the constant hum of excitement and anxiety. When Ohio’s results came in, many began to cheer, certain that the new president had been determined. I, however, was so anxious that I could not yet trust the numbers…dscn0005-1.jpgdscn0009-1.jpg

 

Unfortunately, I had to break away from the party for a while because I have Gamelan on Tuesday nights. I don’t believe I have explained Gamelan yet. It’s a music course in which we play in an Indonesian orchestra comprised of various gongs, drums, and xylophone-esque instruments. The gamelan at LC was brought over from Java by some professors. They found them stored in a cave in the middle of the jungle, and all the instruments date back about two hundred years! The gamelan looks and sounds really beautiful when all played together… it’s an eery, shimmery kind of sound that I’ve never heard in music of any other culture. We all sit on the floor to play the instruments, which are all low to the ground, and in the middle of class we take a break for tea. During this break, we tuned in to NPR to stay up to date on the election.s567882041_782745_8039.jpgs567882041_782746_8073.jpg

 

dscn0013-1.jpgdscn0017-1.jpgdscn0019-1.jpgGamelan ended at about 8:20 and we rushed back over to Council Chambers. Obama had just been announced the winner of the 2008 presidential election! The cheers in the room made it impossible to call my mom or sister to celebrate! Everyone quieted down as he delivered his speech… This is a moment I will never forget in all of my life. I looked around at my peers and felt so deeply IN that moment of hope and wonder- I am so grateful to be part of generation that is initiating this nonviolent revolution. And it was only then, as he spoke, that I could truly believe that he was actually our president! After the speech, there was much hugging and dancing and singing of “Yes We Can”. Everywhere on campus, students paraded about in celebration- it felt like Italy after winning the World Cup! It was such a beautiful night. Although, the victory is yet to come, in my mind, in the years ahead. I have hope, and long to continue being the change that we all wish to see.

 

Although it seems trivial in light of all this, I thought I should say that my Halloween night was fantastic and I hope yours was too! I dressed up as a “foul ball”- it was a pun, my specialty. I was a baseball with a black eye, dirt smudged all over my face and arms, and “foul” language written on me. Ha.. Ha…. n1273620729_31042818_6796.jpgSome friends and I went downtown and went to Chipotle dressed up as a burrito (i.e. wrapped a blanket around us all and put sticky notes on our forehead indicating which ingredient we were). And no, contrary to what you might think, we didn’t do it just for kicks. In fact, Chipotle gives out free burritos on Halloween if you come dressed up as a burrito! After eating the most delicious free burritos in the world, we went over to Portland State University to watch “Pet Sematary,” about the worst and funniest horror movie on the planet. Plus, free popcorn? Now that’s what I call a good time.

 

The rain sounds so lovely outside… This week is “La Semaine Francaise” at LC so a group of students gathered to watch “La Vie En Rose”, a French film about Edith Piaf. It’s a beautifully made movie… thought quite long. Which means, I must return to my homework- or maybe I’ll just continue marathoning “Freaks and Geeks”. We’ll see. Please email me! About inaccurate subtitles, smokers’ coughs, our new president, or anything else on your mind. kkucera@lclark.edu

6 November 2008

November

Yet another week has gone by.  November is here which mean continuous rain and a slight chill.  All the leaves decided to fall one night while no one was paying attention, and now its kind of dangerous to walk around.  My homeboy Nate took one step onto the bridge over the ravine and went down hard.  It’s only funny because he didn’t get hurt.  I’m on the market for a job at the moment and might apply for a grounds keeping position, which would mean I’d be responsible to clean up all of the leaves.  I’d be up for operating a leaf blower and driving a campus vehicle.
Halloween was pretty fun here at L&C.  There were numerous activities and spooky events on campus.  I attempted to dress up as Mr. Rogers, however my wardrobe lacks kindly older gentlemen apparel.  Nate was wearing spandex… Thats all.  n1273620729_31042806_4553.jpg  n550602177_1584284_3334.jpgIt was a mischievous night full of spooks and such.
The day after Nate and I went into town in search for REI.  We took some wrong turns and wound up quite lost in North West Portland.  I asked a Hotel bellman for directions and realized it was this guy I had worked with four years ago in Maine.  It was such a coincidence to find a past friend working on a random street in Portland, Oregon.n1273620729_31042851_7027.jpg
One more thing I forgot to mention about this month: its No Shave November.  This is a chance to prove your ability to grow facial hair.  My scraggly scruff is coming in quite splotchy.  I look a little gross and my chin itches from time to time, but I feel so good, so manly.

Big exam tomorrow, so Ill see yall next week.
Karl

6 November 2008

pretty good


Finally  a video!  My original idea for this week’s video was foiled by the rain, so I decided sort of last-minute to abandon the actual project and focus on something else for this week, so I apoligize if if seems a little un-polished; this isn’t the video I intended to make on, oh, say… Tuesday morning.  That being said, I think it turned out alright.
door in platt platt lounge tv  platt lounge election night

I would have had more time to work on things like video blogs, but, as usual, I’m pretty swamped.  Although my midterms are done, that just means it’s time to gear up for term papers and finals that are actually not terribly far away.

It’s not all work, though, I did manage to spend a fair amount of time this weekend just doing absolutely nothing, which was a welcome change.  It was too wet to skateboard, so that was a bit disappointing, but I’ll live.  I do love the late Fall and Winter (I like the feeling of being cold), but it does mean that longboard is no longer a reliable method of transportation as it is during the summer.  Sure, one CAN skate in any climate, but when one is not-very-good like me, one bites it pretty hard on the way to class too many times during one’s freshman and sophomore years, so this year one rethinks one’s usage of the longboard as a primary mode of transportation after late-September.

Who cares about skateboards, it was election day!  The video covers the evening pretty thoroughly, but I thought I might post a bit about what I did earlier in the evening; a friend here had a problem with her ballot, so she needed to go down to the headquarters and vote in person (Oregon is an absentee-only state).  I drove her around Portland as we tried to find the elections headquarters, but before arriving, we found a stray L&C student also looking for the elections office.  The three of us arrived there and waited in line for one and a half hours (not much by some standards, I am aware).  After my two pals successfully voted, we went for a celebratory dinner meal at the Roxy cafe downtown.

Another bit of politics at Lewis and Clark, I wanted to make sure to link the video of a performance that various members of the LC a capella groups made last year, uniting under the name “Barackapella.”  It has had moderate viral success on the internet, and it is, if I may, a solid rendition/arrangement of Will.i.am’s “Yes We Can” song.

This weekend I’m going to a house with the other people on my Campus Living (CLA/RA) staff.  Hopefully I’ll be able to relax and get caught up on the rest I’m already missing!  There’s just so much to do here that isn’t sleep, sometimes I forget that I really should go to bed at a vaguely decent hour every once in awhile.

now playing in my ears: “Moving On” by Kimya Dawson

5 November 2008

THEY JUST HAD TO HAVE AN ELECTION DURING THE HARDEST ACADEMIC WEEK EVER HUH!!! =)

It’s really over!!! The election that seemed like it would never end is actually over! The funny things is before I came to Lewis and Clark I was never really a fan of politics it just didn’t seem to interest me what so ever. But that all changed when I came to LC. The student body is so motivated and determined; their interest in committing to a cause to benefit not just themselves but America on a whole is incredible and extremely commendable. You just can’t help but become enthralled by it yourself and you begin to learn the importance of our youth and what we are truly capable of. As I sat in my dorm’s lounge with a bunch of my hall mates huddled together watching the election results,  I realized they got me hooked!!! But it truly was an incredible experience to view firsthand such a monumental experience in America’s history.

This week is turning out to be one of my hardest week’s since the term began. I have three exams and a paper to complete by Friday.. FUN HUH?? Sometimes it gets really difficult but you just have to press on and realize that in due time it will be all worth it, and that feeling of success is always the best feeling you can have. So I will think optimistically and try to give it my best shot.

Last week was a pretty fun week!! It was Halloween as you probably already know and I decided to be a police officer. I became obsessed with this Lil Wayne song “Mrs. Officer” so I just had to =). Unfortunately, I was unable to go trick or treating because by the time I was decked out in my costume it was a bit too late. I did have fun with my friends that night though. As a matter of fact that entire weekend was too much fun, which probably explains my difficulty this week (learn to balance guys lol). There were a ton of LC events for Halloween including a scary movie night and a costume competition.3.jpgThat’s the thing about LC, there’s always something going on, you can rarely be bored unless you choose to be bored.1.jpg

Apart from all the fun, I have been missing my family and friends lately, it’s about that time of year. Don’t get me wrong I love LC and everything it has to offer. My friends here are fantastic and they keep me laughing for days but it does get hard when you don’t see your parents for a while after spending seventeen years of your life with them. And you build friendships in high school that are really hard to replace (well you do tend to miss them just as much when I’m away from them. I guess it’s just a win lose situation =).4.jpg

Well guys as I mentioned earlier, I do have some studying to do.. but first I think I’m going to take a quick nap (procrastinaton’t want to replace them) so yes I do miss home. But soon enough I will be back and I’ll be saying the same thing about LC. The people you meet here become a part of your family as well so Ir I know)…. Until next week.. Keep Safe

5.jpgEmail me tfm@lclark.edu

5 November 2008

Welcome back, rain!

I think I’m understating when I say that this has been a crazy week so far! To begin with…Halloween. I’ve decided that Halloween is just an excuse for people to wear spandex or a cape and not be judged for it. Personally, I wear spandex almost everyday for crew, so I can understand the appeal to that one. Unfortunately it was raining, so most people didn’t wear their costumes to class, but I did actually see a few creative ones throughout the day. There is a Costume Contest every year and this year one of the swimmers won as Michael Phelps. I say props to him for wearing a Speedo all day long and not freezing! That evening my roommate and I watched Buffy the Vampire Slayer and ate candy. I do believe we had one of the calmest nights, but it was still a good way to wrap up the week.Saturday was filled with exciting sporting events. In the morning I drove out to Blue Lake Regional Park to watch my best friend compete in the Big Sky Conference Cross Country Championships. I haven’t watched her race since middle school, so it was really awesome that she got to travel out to Portland to race and I got to be there. It was rainy and blustery, but was so fun to watch. I also got to spend time with her family, which also means another free lunch! Yay! Later that day some friends and I drove down to George Fox to watch the L&C volleyball team take on the George Fox Bruins (full game recap). And man oh man, it was one of the most intense games I’ve ever seen! In case you’re unfamiliar, volleyball plays the best 3 out of 5 sets, so when George Fox won the first two sets we were looking for our girls to make a big comeback. And that is exactly what they did. After winning the third set, you could just see it build their confidence and they pounded on the other team with a fury for the last two sets. I’m pretty sure all of our fans lost our voices from all the screaming and cheering. I don’t think much of the student body has any interest in our sports, but in a way this makes the community of athletes so much tighter and more supportive of each other. I transferred from a DI school where the athletes were given money to play, and our basketball team was treated like gods. I think one of the fantastic things about playing for a DIII school is that we’re not out there for the money or (especially at L&C) the glory. We play for the love of our individual sports, and I think this was shown by the volleyball team on Saturday night.

Though I do love sports, sometimes I actually do other things too. I didn’t have much homework on Sunday so my roommate and another friend and I went shopping for Fall Ball dresses. Last year Fall Ball was at OMSI, and I had a blast! It is hosted by our Activities Congress, and I think this year they’ve got the kinks worked out and they are going to put on a great event. It’s going to be held at the Crystal Ballroom, and I’ll do my best to put up pictures afterward. I think that most of the student body would like to think that they were “too cool” for a school dance, but Fall Ball is something that most people have a pretty good time at.

My last exciting event happened last night. As everyone knows it was the election, and the majority of the L&C student body supported Obama. I didn’t even have to watch the reports to know that Obama had won because our school just went nuts. I live across from Templeton, and after everything was announced, people came pouring out, screaming and cheering and running around. I heard someone say today that, “it was the most historical election ever and we got to make it happen! That’s so cool.” and I think that sums it up the best.

Until later, Jess

5 November 2008