There’s Snow Buisness like Snow Buisness

Ithaca has been pounded by snow over the past two days.

I have lived in a variety of “lovely” places (Buffalo and Chicago mostly) and I have seen sideways rain, heat waves that have been dangerous to drive in, lightning during a snow storm, and so on. This recent Snownami has been in the top 5 weather shenanigans I have witnessed.

And it just keeps coming down! As steward for my fraternity, it is my job to ensure food is delivered on Friday nights. I had to call three different places before someone would pick up a phone and deliver to us! Cornell even canceled classes on Friday (although, it was only anything before 9:30am. I don’t know if there are any classes before 10:10 on Fridays…)

The view from my window
The view from my window

Greek Peak (our local ski spot) has been incredible. So (I have heard) was the all school snow-ball fight that occurred yesterday. And as poor college kids, a few of us got garbage bags and went sledding on the hill near our house. (Note: a highly controversial school rule prohibits sledding¬† down the slope. This photo was NOT taken on the slope.) It’s a beautiful scene here in Ithaca!

A friend of mine sledding on a garbage bag
A friend of mine sledding on a garbage bag

Favorite Spots on Campus

This week starts a segment I like to call “What’s your favorite spot on Campus!?!?!” It is where I go up to people and say “Hey, take me to your favorite spot on campus!”

This is the first one, so it is a little dicey, but it has a sweet creative commons approved dance track!

First Try!

I cant get it into the blog post…click the link instead. I’ll get there!

Interactive!

To my adoring fans,

In the next few weeks, there will be some important stuff to look for on my blog. First of all is a new photo project that the Communications department has started at Cornell. It is called “I am Cornell”, and can be found here on Flickr. It is an awesome idea that I contributed to a little.

Secondly, as the admissions season winds down and decisions start to become made, I am encouraging people to ask more questions. Ask anything about Cornell, or College-life, the decision process, and so on. The awesome thing about this job, is it is virtually unmoderated, so I will answer everything and anything totally honestly.

And lastly, there will be video elements added soon. In the upcoming weeks, expect to see highlights from people’s favorite spots on campus, interviews with frat boys, atheletes, and students alike, and maybe even some magic!

Keep checking back!

Olympic Fever!

I love the Olympics! Not only do I love watching the sports and all, but this year is that much cooler as there are three Cornellians competing. Everything from the downhill and freestyle skiing, to hockey, to bobsled, and even figure skating…

On top of all of that, the whole world gets to watch. It is awesome! The winter Olympics always make me happier too because the America’s Sup and the World Cup all take place in the same year. Every four years is one of the best sports experiences ever!

Facebook

When I was a Junior in High School, I had a Myspace page, which my mother was less than thrilled to see. I convinced her that Facebook was a better, safer alternative, and it had only just been opened to high schoolers, meaning it had to be safer. I remember making a profile, adding a few friends who were in college and receiving my first wall post from one of them: a girl I knew from Model UN that had graduated a year before. She said “Since when did they let hs-ers on here?!?!”.

It has been really cool to see such a dramatic evolution of a medium that has started to change the way that we make friends and network. I had a paper facebook that was published in high school. My uncle still has his from college. Now, my “People you may know” box says that “You and Kathleen Cullen-Harwood went to Cornell Together!!” Uh, hell no we didn’t, that’s my mom…

Facebook

Sure, I love being able to still be connected with people I would have otherwise forgotten from small events few and far between, but has Facebook maybe added to the degradation of conversation in our society? My 14 year old cousin has a Facebook profile, do I need her looking at my pictures? I had an interview and the employer said that she had searched me. Do we need that risk? When did a summer job start to care what I did the other 9 months of the year? Fun may literally be being killed as we freak out about what will appear on our profile. Could I not get hired by a company because they don’t agree with one of my quotes?

Meanwhile, the bank I worked at this summer required executives to do shots of vodka before their presentations at the regional retreat. The real world apparently has fun, so why can’t I? Why do I have to be so nervous?¬† We live in such a changed digital age. Should I be worried about an employer finding this blog?

I see this all as harmful to our society. The increased self-censoring is bad news for all of us. A recent Wired magazine article discussed how the public conversation has been totally changed as our social networks expand to the point where it is no longer a group of a manageable size. It isn’t just that our social networks have grown to the point where we cannot feasibly sustain all of our connections either. We have downgraded our forms of communication: I asked a fraternity brother for help on picking classes last year via Facebook message. His response: “I am your brother and friend. You can’t pick up your goddamn phone and call me?” And he is right, we seem to have gotten to the point where we no longer directly communicate with people.

That is not to say that Facebook is a bad thing, I just don’t know if I am really in the generation that can utilize it the most efficiently. My mom, who has already learned how to talk on the phone and maintain friends, without the internet, is now on Facebook, and uses it to reconnect with people she has fallen out of touch with for various reasons. My generation is way too young to be able to appreciate that power. Instead, we use it as a cop-out to real communication and connection and run the risk of allowing the “real world” to see what we actually are…

Well, I guess at least I can type faster because of it now…

Top 25 you say??

A Sea of MaizeMy younger sister goes to the University of Michigan. Being raised a die-hard Notre Dame fan, I was very opposed to this, but decided that I would support her by visiting during a football weekend to watch the Wolverines take on the Fighting Irish.

Growing up in Big-10 country, I know how big sports schools are. Having attended Cornell, I thought I would be able to handle myself, I mean we camp out overnight for hockey tickets. To me, that meant I could almost hold my own. I was wrong.

Michigan on a football weekend is unreal. I have never seen so many drunk and happy people in one place. And I knew so many people there, and managed to accidently run into almost every single one of them. Even though Notre Dame lost in what was the single best football game I have EVER seen, I had an absolute blast. (But the girls I was staying with wouldn’t let me wear my Notre Dame stuff because that would have endangered them. People would have thrown stuff at me, and them because they were with me. Wow…)

Needless to say, I returned to Cornell, only to remeber that while we have more varsity sports programs than any SEC or Big-10 school, we aren’t quite on their level. Until now…

Top 25!!! In the country! Sure, it isn’t the AP poll, but that is pretty awesome. Of the Cornell Basketball teams 3 (Yea, I said it, 3) losses, two of them came to teams with a combined record of 42-2. The other one, to Big East power Seton Hall. And it hasn’t just been lowly lousy teams we’ve beaten: ‘Bama, Davidson, St. John’s, Massachusetts. Oh, and all of those wins were on the road. It has been predicted that they could be seeded as high as 9th come the Madness in March.

My hat is off to the men of the Cornell basketball team. After crushing Harvard last weekend, and getting ready to face Brown and Yale this weekend, they are bringing some real pride to this campus.

LET’S GO RED