Three months from now, many of my classmates and I will be jet-setting to foreign lands in search of adventure, out-of-the box education, invaluable experiences, and the perfect foodstagrams. Going abroad sits somewhere between exciting and strange. Everyone I’ve spoken to, who is leaving Brown for the fall semester, has agreed that it doesn’t yet feel like we’re actually leaving, or like we aren’t going to be back here for a whopping eight months.
You know what they say–count your blessin’s. Though the sophomore slump hit us pretty effing hard, we shouldn’t forget what we’ll miss about Brown while we’re gone. I know — the slump makes it easy to forget. Don’t worry — I’m here to remind you what’s so special about Brunonia.
1. The Ratty. Some study abroad programs don’t offer meal plans for their students. Plus, how could those that do compete with the Ratty? The Ratty, in my opinion, is one of the most amazing things about Brown. Those going abroad won’t find all-you-can eat, pre-paid meals everywhere in the world — or daily access to grilled chicken.
2. The Brown bubble. The Brown bubble is safer than any foreign city; there’s no doubt about that. It’s also a one-stop shop — the Brown bubble has everything you could ever need in a square mile and a half. Food, good places to work, a CVS, bars, and, most importantly, Health Services! What do I do if my appendix explodes while I’m abroad? How do I find antibiotics in the Czech Republic?
3. The familiar faces, which lies in the same vein as the Brown bubble. It sounds like a college cliché, but it’s true — you really can’t go more than two minutes without running into someone you know or without someone saying hi to you. When you’re having a shitty day and are forced to smile to someone you know, your day actually becomes that much better. I’m not so sure you can feel so loved in a city of millions of strangers. (Wow, that sounds super depressing.)
If you were at Friday’s Spring Weekend concert, you’d know that Waka Flocka Flame had a PIC (partner-in-crime) up on stage with him for a little bit. This anonymous person was in a full-on, head-to-toe rooster costume. You might have assumed that was one of Waka’s roadies, or a groupie, or his bodyguard, or something like that, but you were so, so wrong.
It turns out that the now infamous Left Rooster was none other than Brown’s own Colin Duffy ’15, who had the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to rage with Waka on the Main Green. We spoke to Duffy to find out just what it was like to be the rooster in Waka’s rari.
Was it planned for you to go onstage?
I was talking to my friends a couple weeks ago about Waka… There was a big group of us hanging around, and he has this song, “Rooster in My Rari,” with a music video, which is him up there with a guy in a rooster costume. We were all thinking about Left Shark and his moment at the Super Bowl, and there was this idea thrown around that it would be funny if someone put on a rooster suit and got called onstage for “Rooster in My Rari.”
So we all chipped in on [a rooster suit] and figured that one of us would have to wear it. Earlier in the week I was talking to a friend of mine who works for BCA, and I told him about our plan as a joke… On Friday, I’m running out of class talking to the security guards about how I would bring a rooster costume through security. An hour later I get a text from [my friend] saying, “Waka thinks it’s unbelievable that you bought that costume, he wants you on stage.”
Hudson Mohawke is not a Lower Manhattan-based hairstyle. He doesn’t even wear a Lower Manhattan-based hairstyle. But, I mean, he constructed the beat behind Yeezy’s “Blood on the Leaves,” which is perhaps the best song on Yeezus, and that’s good enough for me.
Born Ross Birchard, Hudson Mohawke looks like a literal sixteen-year-old but is actually 29. His dad gave him his first pair of turntables when he was 11. At 15, Mohawke was the youngest-ever UK DMC finalist. Except then, he spun under the name “DJ Itchy,” which is horrible. His career took off in his native Glasgow, Scotland, by getting radio slots, performing at Glasgow University, and DJing in clubs under the name DJ Mayhem, a big step up from DJ Itchy.
Mohawke had no real recognition outside the viral boundaries of SoundCloud etcetera until 2012. His repertoire was mostly composed of underground releases and mixes circulated online, even after signing to Warp Records in 2009. His first official release, “Spotted,” was featured on the Rush Hour beat compilation Beat Dimensions Vol. 1, and his second official release, “Free Mo,” was released on the Ubiquity Records various-artists compilation Choices, Vol. 1. In 2008, his first official EP, Ooops!, was an underground hit.
Taking after our BFFs at New York Magazine, we’ve designed, especially for you, a Spring Weekend approval matrix comparing the college mini-music festivals ~around the country~. Ranking lineups on scales from #basic to (Sasha) Fierce and from Kris Humphries to Kanye, it turns out that, from a relatively objective POV, Brown kinda comes out on top. Next to T-Pain, of course.
Brown has been here for a really long time. And so has Great Uncle Teddy.
Join BlogDH and Theodore F. Low, known to us as Uncle Teddy—a Providence native, Moses Brown graduate, and member of the Brown University class of 1949—as we embark on a new storytelling series. Uncle Teddy’s oral histories recollect his time at Brown as a child, student, and parent over the last 87 years.
In the first episode, Uncle Teddy tells us about his background:
In episode two, Uncle Teddy tells a story about a WBRU romance:
Fun fact: the flame that Janet passed along eventually made its way to Muhammad Ali.
In 2002, 12,012 Olympic torchbearers carried a single flame across 13,500 miles. In honor of the 50th anniversary of the Winter Torch relay, torchbearers weaved their way through 46 states for 65 days. It even has its own Wikipedia page. Janet Peters remembers these details, and many more painstaking ones, because she has the relay map on the back of a t-shirt.
Janet, who impressively juggles managing the Writing Center, the Writing Fellows Program, Excellence at Brown, and other academic tutoring programs, was one of the 12,012 to helped the flame travel across the world to Salt Lake City. The tradition of the torch relay that makes places over a few months before each Olympics began in 1936 at the summer games in Berlin. The torch is lit by the sun using a parabolic mirror at the site of the original Olympics, in Olympia, Greece, at the Temple of Hera, which is quite cool. It is then carried a bit through Greece before making its journey to the country of that year’s Olympic games, the flame being passed from torchbearer to torchbearer, until the final carrier runs toward the cauldron and lights the official Olympic flame atop a grand staircase.
We interviewed Janet to get the scoop on her experience and what it’s like to now have an Olympic torch in her house.
As your “salient fact” at the Writing Fellows retreat last month, you very casually noted that you were a torchbearer in the 2002 Olympics. What was your exact role?
It was the torch relay, so I ran a leg of it, which is a third of a mile. The flame has to remain lit from its journey, at that time, from Olympia, Greece to Salt Lake City.