My boss called me out (via Twitter of all places) for having never written from the arts quad. What follows is a play-by-play for some of the time I sat on the quad, observing one of the most central parts of Cornell’s campus.

11:38am- I sit down next to the statue of the first president of the University: Andrew White. Why someone would rather be the president of the University, as opposed to its namesake, is completely beyond me.

11:39am- Legend has it when a virgin walks by the Arts quad late at night, the statues of Ezra Cornell and Andrew White walk to the center of the quad and shake hands. When I was a little kid, my father used to tell me that this occurred when a pretty girl walked past the quad. My mother always used to laugh when he said this and it took me 13 years, including my freshman year to imagine why she found this so amusing. Needless to say I did not find it as amusing.

11:42am- It’s been four minutes, and all I can think about are these damn statues. A girl I used to see and I were walking home from Collegetown freshman year, and she mentioned the story to me. I slyly asked if we should be watching the statues cross. She slyly slapped me and told me to mind my own business…I wonder what she is doing tonight…

11:43am- I text her, immediately regret it and don’t expect to hear back.

11:44am- Still haven’t heard back. Maybe she lives on the west coast

11:45am-A tour is coming through the quad. They round the corner between Olin and Uris libraries, walk backwards towards Goldwin-Smith and Stimson and fill in prospective students and curious parents about the demographics and qulities of two of the most defining schools at Cornell that reside on this particular quad: The College of Arts and Sciences and the College of Architecture, Art, and Planning. I applied to be a tour guide twice, and it was the only on-campus job I applied to that I didn’t get. I think I would be perfect for it, and although I have never actually been on a university tour, I give them in my head when I walk to class every once in a while. Just in case they need to call me up from the minors one day.

11:50am- She probably lives on the west coast

11:51am- Rumor goes that there are three tunnels on campus. Two of them lie on the Arts quad: one exists between Uris and Olin libraries and is only open on Slope Day. This is only partly true, it is not officially open on Slope Day, but sophomore year, one of my roommates and I decided to check it out and had a wonderful custodian escort us to the door that leads between the two, but wouldn’t let us all the way through. The second tunnel I have heard whispers of on the Arts quad lies between the administrative building (Day Hall) and Goldwin Smith. This one was built after the race riots of the 1960s and allows the President to escape his office in the event of students taking over the building. I can’t confirm this, but only because Skorton still can’t find time to get on my schedule.

11:56am- She totally lives on the west coast right? Or maybe she isn’t like me, and has a job. “Funemployment”, as I keep telling people, doesn’t pay as well as you would hope…

11:57am- I start looking through old pictures I have on my computer and find a few that I meant to post and write about that occurred here on the Arts quad. I have a few journals, countless memos and texts, and an array of pictures, post-its, etc. methods of reminding me about potential blog posts. Frankly, it’s a busy life being Cullen B. Harwood…

NOON- time does seem to pass pretty quickly. I look at Day Hall and wonder if Skorton has this same problem. I’ve mentioned our illustreous president in the blog plenty of times–usually in jest. The truth is, a roommate met him sophomore year and I am very jealous. I sent him an email freshman year. He responded too, and even though it took him a month, I was impressed, shocked, and soon learned that he is much better than some of his Professors at responding to emails. Professor Pedro Perez, who isn’t a very good Professor as it was, took 9 months to respond to an email from me. I forgot I had sent it and had to look back to figure out what he was talking about.

12:09pm- A little Facebook stalking doesn’t confirm if she lives on the west coast, or is employed.

12:11pm-Never should have sent that text. It is confirmed

12:13pm-I’ll proofread this tomorrow. Off to CTB for a sandwich. Note to self, tweet this post at my boss too…

I always wanted to jump in these leaf piles

I always wanted to jump in these leaf pilesPeople get creative with their snow sculptures

This girl climbs to the top and screams "I can do whatever I want!" It was far too early in the morning, and far too late in the season for there to be snow, but I still smiled

This girl climbs to the top and screams "I can do whatever I want!" It was far too early in the morning, and far too late in the season for there to be snow, but I still smiled

3 Responses to “Live from the Arts Quad!”
  1. Kate P says:

    Cullen, I love reading your blog. You just made me miss Cornell like WHOA. Hope to see you soon.

  2. Lisa says:

    You totally just made my day, man.

  3. John Moore says:

    Great post. I love stories of hidden tunnels on old campuses.

    Oh yeah and the stalking really added suspense.

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