To be clear, I am very appreciative of the 250th committee and everything they have sponsored and organized for us in the past few months. I think it’s amazing that by sheer luck we are students during this epic marker of Brown’s history, and that we get to benefit from all the festivities thrown in the university’s honor. I love fireworks and big building-shaped cakes. I’m a huge fan of cool-alum panels, I own a copy of The Brown Reader, and I thought bringing Binder to the Main Green on a Sunday for alumni and their frolicking children to enjoy was an especially nice touch. But it has to be said: “Imagine Brown 250+” is an incredibly dumb phrase.
I hate “Imagine Brown 250+” so, so much. It makes no sense. It is on a flag pole every thirty feet, plastered on giant signs on buildings, on sweatshirts in the bookstore, and thrown around like crazy in casual conversation and yet no one acknowledges that it makes no sense.
Years of college-level textual analysis have taught me well, so I’m capable of explaining why this phrase sucks on many levels. Firstly, there is the meaning of the phrase. Think for a second about what the phase “Imagine Brown 250+” is trying to communicate. It says, hey, let’s think about Brown in an unspecified time in the future. That’s actually not what the past few months of celebration have been about at all. Continue Reading