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We have a University Organist and no one can take that away from us

That Brown possesses the largest remaining operational Hutchings-Votey organ in the galaxy ranks in the top five things you hear on a prospective student tour, somewhere between “there is no typical Brown student” and “No, I didn’t see Emma Watson on campus” (Ed. – We should write that up). While most Brown students never saw Emma Watson, many Brown students do go to an organ concert or two during their undergraduate careers. If you have yet to see the organ in action, don’t miss tonight’s Midnight Halloween Organ Concert. For most of Brunonia, however, knowledge of the behemoth that resides inside Sayles above the imposing portraits of old white guys stops there. Most people don’t even know what a Hutchings (or a Votey) is! Last month, we sat down with Mark Steinbach, Brown’s University Organist, to clear a few things up ahead of the annual Halloween concert. It’s safe to say we got more than we bargained for.

I caught up with Mark Steinbach after one of his organ lessons. I showed up in Sayles at 2:57 for a 3:00 p.m. meeting, and he gave me a polite yet stern request to wait downstairs while he finished with his student. You’re really getting your money’s worth with him, apparently. Once he had finished teaching, however, he dove headfirst into our meeting. I guess you kind of have to be all-in on the organ once you’re that good at playing it. We began with a tour of the inside of the organ.

Pipes. Everywhere.

Pipes. Pipes everywhere.

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Group Halloween costumes for specific numbers of people

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Last week, my friend grexted group texted all of our of friends, saying, “GUYS there are 7 of us and 7 deadly sins… Halloween costume or what?” If you have the right number of friends for a particular group costume, you pretty much have to do it. Here we’ve come up with some great group costumes if you happen to have exactly the right number of people. Some might be a little tough to coordinate, but we trust you all to try your best.

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206: A skeleton

This isn’t just a normal halloween skeleton costume. With 206 people, you can each be a different bone in the human body! Get really good at walking in formation, and together you’re a skeleton. You can also get clever with the individual bones—dibs on being the funny bone.

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42: The meaning of life

This one is really easy: you just have to get 42 people together. Rally together your entire seminar or your freshman unit. You don’t even have to wear anything special, just cluster together and make it clear that there are 42 of you. It’s also really deep.

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1001: The Arabian Nights

There are a few ways you can interpret this one. You could each be an actual character from a story in One Thousand and One Nights. You could each dress up as the literal night, by wearing black and sticking glow-in-the-dark stars all over yourself. Or you could go super punny and wear a knight costume! LOL!

mitzvot

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BlogDH Panel: #FlashbackFriday, Halloween 2k14 edition

Last year, Blog rejoiced when Halloween fell on #ThrowbackThursday. This year, we are not so fortunate: Halloween coincides with #FlashbackFriday, a watered down pseudo-version of #TBT, the classic and culturally accepted weekly Instagram holiday. We could not, however, resist getting involved in the most overkill social media-induced nostalgia trip of the year just because of the pesky Gregorian calendar…so, we have curated a BlogPanel of simpler days when Halloween wasn’t about muploading from the Whiskey Republic and out-punning your frenemies. Happy #FlashbackFriday!

Our editor-in-chief, Georgia Tollin (far left), mustache you a question.

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Reclaiming Your Old Halloween Costume

its-the-great-pumpkin-charlie-brown2

As October comes to a close, Brunonians are grappling with the same seemingly unanswerable question: what am I going to be for Halloween? The task of coming up with a costume that’s both original and sexi is stressful to say the least. I’ve scanned Ricky’s Halloween Superstore for inspiration and been intrigued by options like this:

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And this:

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And especially this:

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This costume is only $100!!!

But every costume from Ricky’s is $50+, so clearly this is out of the question. (Also, the categories on their website are 20’s, 50’s, 80’s, princess, superhero, funny, and Arabian.)

There are always the costumes I can throw together at the last minute. To the black cats and the school girls, I say Been There, Done That and Never Going Back Again (okay I’ll probably go back). At this point, it’s even more hackneyed to be “a mouse, duh” (and if you had to click on that link, we can’t be friends). Continue Reading


The Evolution of Halloween

There aren’t a lot of things that last from birth and through college. We don’t still get tucked in at night by our parents, have home cooked meals, swim in the shallow end, or brush our teeth twice a day (I’m not alone on this right?), but we still get excited for Halloween. Sure, the goal of Halloween changes from childhood to college. No longer is it about who can get the most candy but rather it is about who can GET the most candy (see what i did there). Instead of eating Twix and Snickers till we get sick, we drink Caldwell’s and Natty till we get sick. We still wear costumes, yet instead of dressing like our favorite disney character, we now dress like our favorite sexy disney character (I am going as Olaf from Frozen this year FYI).

Slutty Olaf

So maybe not all that much has changed, and that is fine because, like my uncle from South Carolina, I am scared of change. But Halloween for sure has evolved, from our earliest days of getting dressed in adorable baby-propriate costumes, to that time we went as sexy Shia Leboeuf.

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Shia

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Best places on campus to jump out and say, “BOO!”

We all know that Halloween has one soul (sole. It’s a pun. Like ghosts. Forget it.) purpose. It’s not scantily clad ladies or bags of different kinds of candy that you trade for bags of only Reese’s. It is not for worshipping Satan, the Prince of Darkness, and finally, it’s not, as this confused Google search suggests, for the Grinch (who is a distinctly Christmas character).

Also questionable result: "Family is forever"

Also questionable result: “Family is forever”

No, Halloween is for scaring the shit out of people, and anyone who says anything different (be they sex maniacs, candy lovers, Satanists, or Grinch fans), is kidding themselves. To that end, here are the best places on campus to jump out and say “BOO!”

1. From behind corners.

Duh.

2. Bathroom stalls

Really, it’s genius. “Ladada just minding my own business. Just gonna check HuffPo while I take a quick shit and hope I don’t see someone I know. I’ll just open the door—“ BOO. Their belt is half undone, their pants fall to their ankles, and you walk away with 10 points for Gryffindor. It’s perfect. People going to the bathroom are so unsuspecting and so trusting that everyone in the bathroom is on the same page and won’t try anything tricky. But not you, you comic genius. Not you. 

3. Slam yourself against a window

As demonstrated by that scene in The Dark Knight where that dead faux-Batman body slams against the mayor’s window, this is a scary move for real. Because in the fall, people are so into looking out of their windows like it’s a fun, normal, safe thing, never anticipating the danger that can emerge from the foliage. In this scenario, you are the danger. Danger is your middle name. Good windows include those weird shaped ones on the MCM building, the ones on the basement level of the Rock (THAT’S WHAT YOU GET FOR STUDYING DURING HALLOWEEK), and the ones on the top of Faunce (as long as no one sees you coming).

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