For the past two years, I’ve been infamous for stealing the giveaways from the career fairs. How can you steal something that’s free, you may ask? Well, the freebies are usually intended for students who are interested in working for these companies. I have notoriously shown zero interest in getting a job, and that is why the majority of employers at this fair hate me.
Alas, now I am nearing the end of my life–adulthood–and I need a summer internship. I had originally planned to attend this year’s career fair in all seriousness and instead of just documenting all the goodies I brought home, I would document all of the rejection I experienced. It did not go as planned. Well, the rejection part went as expected, but I still got a lot of free stuff.
My dear readers, I promise, I tried to change. I dressed business casual even though it was a fruitless gesture under my winter coat and scarf. I printed out FOUR resumes because I heard that’s something you’re supposed to do. Unfortunately, desperation works in strange ways. There were only so many times I could cheerfully ask tech companies if they were interested in a blogger with no applicable skills! Enough with my excuses. Without further ado, here is the haul for 2015:
IXL is one of those companies where a writer could initially think they are a good fit before realizing that the representatives at the fair were only recruiting website builders (much like the table for the New York Times). Shrouded in disappointment, I couldn’t say no to a compressible frisbee. Or dominoes. Speaking of, did you know there are rules for dominoes? I always thought the tiles were more of a décor statement.
Looking for a little on-campus cultural advancement? The Brown Wind Symphony is holding a free concert tonight from 8-10 p.m. in Sayles Hall. Conducted by Mr. Mathew McGarrel, they will perform works by Mozart, Percy Grainger, and Jaromir Weinberger, as well as a special performance by a percussion ensemble. What makes this concert even better is that Brown’s resident organist, Mark Steinbach, will perform alongside the Wind Symphony. In case you didn’t know, Brown is home to our very own Hutchings-Votey pipe organ, which happens to be the world’s largest, with over 3,300 pipes.
The Wind Symphony concert is a great way to get your Friday night started, and it ends just in time for you to catch the better part of most pregames, in case that’s a concern of yours. You can also try to impress a date by pretending to know who the heck Jaromir Weinberger is (he was actually a badass Czech composer who wrote over 100 works such as operas, choral works, and symphonies). If you haven’t had a chance to check out a student performance or an organ concert, now is your opportunity. The tickets are free, and the doors open at 8:00 p.m.
This past Friday, I attended the midnight Halloween pipe organ concert in Sayles Hall, courtesy of Mark Steinbach. As someone who has spent a fair bit of time in Sayles this semester, I had been waiting to hear the beast come to life for some time. It did not disappoint. Finally, I thought, I understand why the tour guides always mention this thing. It’s an aural Ark of the Covenant, melting the faces off of villains who hear its tones (a presumption, but I’ll take this leap to faith without regret). This newfound appreciation for the organ led to another realization: Brown is wasting its antique pipe organ potential. Here are just a few ways we can right this wrong.
1. Live Soundtrack for Exams
There comes a point in a test that many of you, perhaps even all of you, have experienced. It is the realization of the utter futility of your efforts, the crossing of the threshold of Dante’s Inferno. Abandon all hope, ye who enter here. You then split your remaining exam time between half-heartedly jotting down formulas, and convincing yourself that med school probably wasn’t for you anyhow. Supposing your exam was held in the main hall at Sayles, you could raise your hand (or perhaps put on a black armband) to signal Steinbach. He would then play a funeral dirge for your hypothetical 4.0 GPA. If everyone is starring in the story of their own life, depressing scenes demand myriad minor chords to eulogize your aspirations.
The main hall is large enough for a wrestling ring. This gives us the fantastic opportunity to hear wrestlers’ walkout themes played via the organ. Okay, maybe no one has ever wanted this but me, but I think that a fusion of classical music and HAM acting could be a thing of beauty. Imagine every ridiculous revelation and taunt accompanied by a burst of organ notes. It would be like an action movie trailer extended over several hours. So, an action movie, I guess. Booker Tchaikovsky. Chopin M. Punk. Triple Haydn. The Bach. This stuff writes itself.
The emblem of class and sophistication
Reading Period is a stressful time, no doubt. And for many of us, the weather can be an auspicious (at least for a few days, until it really hits us how gravely we need to hit the books) soporific. One thing I love about Brown, though, is that—assuming you are awake and willing to walk around campus—there are so many things that accent Reading Period with positivity. Candy Land, free pizza in the Rock and SciLi, Gingerbread S’mores in the Blue Room, and—dare I say—the Naked Donut Run are some good examples. While these four events involve food as we know it, there are other kinds of nourishment—there is indeed musical sustenance, food for the soul, “good vibes.”
Tonight, the Midnight Organ Concert‘s has us covered in this department. In Sayles Hall, you can enjoy the dulcet sounds of fourteen of Brown’s finest a cappella groups—The Higher Keys, Alef Beats, ARRR!!!, Bear Necessities, Brown’s Tones, Chattertocks, Derbies, Disney A Cappella, Harmonic Motion, Jabberwocks, Madrigals, Shades of Brown, Ursa Minors, and Wubappella—as well as those of student organist Joseph Cadabes. Doors will open for admission at 11:30. As the Facebook page advises, “Grab a blanket, a pillow and a friend or LOVER” and get ready for that ethereal musical experience you’ve been waiting for all semester.
Visitors to Room 201 in Sayles Hall were greeted with an unusual sight yesterday: a bat of unidentified species, possibly possessing rabies and calmly chilling like no one’s business by the top of the door. Despite several classes entering and leaving the room over the course of the day, as well as countless high-pitched screams of “ah! a bat!” from the surrounding hallway, the winged mammal remained unfazed.
What do you think? Bloodthirsty vampire freak or calm chiropteran?
UPDATE: Professor Sharon Swartz, who does bat-flight research, has given this a tentative ID of Eptesicus fuscus, the big brown bat (yes, that’s its name). Isn’t nature cool?
The Suzuki Method: Funk Edition
A key part of embracing your new identity as a Brown student is learning to love things you never thought you could love: Coffee milk, 9 a.m. section, and snow sculptures, among others. Monday at midnight be prepared to add to that list “crushingly loud organ recitals.” (If you already have that on your list, stop lying, you only wrote that down for your personal essay to get into this place.) The Sayles organ, a monstrous fell beast of an instrument, was gifted to the university in 1903, and has been rocking the campus during midnight concerts ever since. Played by genius Mark Steinbach, resident Lecturer of Music, Instrument Curator, and University Organist, the primordial pipes and the building that houses them play host to hundreds of blanket clad students every year during a handful of witching-hour performances (the Halloween edition is especially spooky). Bring pillows, bring popcorn, bring your brand-new freshman soul mates (Perkins kids, we’re looking at you) and experience one of Brown’s most unique gatherings. Rumor has it Steinbach will branch out into Hammonds and Moogs next year…