The rains have set in, and the dreary weather makes one pine for a bygone age. We’re not talking about this past summer, but the summers during Reed’s golden years. Students would frolick in the outdoor swimming pool that once existed where the fish ladder now stands. Read about the rise and fall of this contentious structure (1). Childhood always looks better in memory than in pictures. Better than any faded dusty polaroid, our recollections of the past are a little brighter, a little warmer than in reality. Richard Linklater has taken childhood, memory, and our generation and wrapped it into a movie for the ages. Dylan Holmes reviews Boyhood (4), treading the fine mental line between the present and past. Maddy Appelbaum asks us to imagine throwing the ideal party. What would it be like? A simple question right? Wrong. Prepare to be led on a time traveling journey through childhood, dreams, and talking Trees (7). Miss Lonely Hearts is back, along with the life altering questions and answers you’ve always wanted but never felt courageous enough to ask (6). Culture Charlie is here again, and sooner than expected. With too much culture to just fit on one page, this special spillover edition of the Cultural Calendar brings more of the movies and show you didnt even know you wanted to see (10)! If you know someone abroad who would like to write for The Grail, tell them to visit www.reedthegrail.com. Share with us your news, pictures, and stories from your time abroad and they could end up in the magazine! This weeks tale from Spain comes courtesy of The Grail’s own Lauren Cooper (9).
Brendan, Brian, Grace, Jordan, Lauren, Maddy, Vikram
News & Features
Most Reed students have heard tales from Canyon Day’s past, when the celebrated century-old tradition meant something entirely different than it does today. From unsolicited lake crossings to burning native vegetation, the Canyon suffered innumerable blows at the hands of Reed students and staff members alike. All this effort was, of course, an attempt to “tame” the natural space and convert it into a park more reminiscent of Victorian-era Hyde Park than 1920’s Portland. As David Mason’s ’58 Biology thesis cites, even early on the College had a fascination with altering the natural area. According to him, the Reed College Record in 1912 stated: “through the center of the campus, east and west, is a wooded ravine, which, in the course of development of the grounds, will be made a picturesque lake.” I know the lake is picturesque now but the early Reedies had a drastically different take on what the word picturesque meant. Canyon Day aside, none of the misdirected machinations of students during the early 1900’s compare to what is arguably the most destructive construction project to be completed in the Canyon: the community pool.
I don’t remember much of my childhood. It’s kind of sad, and honestly a little scary when I dwell on it. All of that time spent developing and growing up, and it’s nothing but a patchy series of half-memories to me! I was so unaware of how important and yet temporary it all was — and really, we’re all guilty of this. It’s retrospective thoughts like these that lead adults to get on one knee and drop meaningless pearls of wisdom to 8 year olds that “childhood doesn’t last forever,” and that “you’ll miss this,” as if the kid is suddenly going to develop some constant temporal awareness that allows them to perfectly savor childhood so that they won’t grow up saying the same shit. We struggle to comprehend ourselves and where we came from. We vaguely recall growing up, but only from a more world-weary vantage point where we almost speak about our past experiences apologetically. But right now we at Reed are more focused on retaining Deleuzian critical theory and chemical equations to dwell too much on how uniquely odd it is that we even got to where we are. So what’s to be done about it?
Miss Lonely Hearts
Dear Miss Lonelyhearts,
I've always been against the idea of theme housing because I've always been a really independent person and I don't want some where I live to define me and encompass my entire life. Two years of college and 6+ clubs later, I still haven't found even one person I can call my friend. I'm thinking about trying to transfer into a theme dorm but I'm afraid it's not "me." Should I give in or keep searching elsewhere??
– Bummed in Bidwell
As a little freshman at Reed College, ripe with all the social skills of…a banana, my main method of getting to know potential new friends/enemies came in the form of the hypothetical question. This tactic worked out great and everyone has a positive opinion of me, so now I bring you, reader, a provocative way to get to know your potential frenemies. I hope this game fills you with the same immense joy/minor anxiety it did me!
If I don’t return from Sevilla it’ll have been because of the streets. The streets here are smaller than the sidewalks in Portland and the drivers crazier than 16 year olds who have had their license for only 14 hours. Getting to class is practically a matter of life and death, 15 minutes of dodging cars, switching sides of the street when the sidewalk disappears—because that’s usually something sidewalks do—watching for people coming out of the various hidden entrances to the various churches and trying not to step on small dogs or step in what they leave behind. That being said, I like it. And not so much for the Indiana Jones obstacle course aspect but because it’s nice to walk through a city and not fully understand what’s being said around me. It’s like a game—can I pick up on that person’s Spanish fast enough to eavesdrop on their conversation? Nope? Oh well, onto the children.
Trust, Ought, Mutual Benefit, and more...