Monday, November 22, 2010


So I was away this past weekend doing some field research. A part of it had me spending up some 28 hours, mainly at Leverett House. I had dinner and breakfast there, both featuring food I've had at Yale, and I have to say Harvard smoked Yale, no contest, on almost everything edible. They even have chocomilk in their dining halls. What kind of non-Commons caveman state is the rest of Yale in? No, choco-soy milk doesn't count, hippies.

The soft-serve and the hot-choco weren't as great as Yale, maybe the eggs, nuther, but everything else was miles ahead of Yale. I thought Yale's French toast rocked, but dude, they had real-deal FT up in that snitch. The Chicken Parmesan was just as surpassy to its Yale counterpart, too. They didn't have OTS (organic tomato sauce, for the laypeople), but their spaghetti sauce was as sweetly tangy as OTS on its best "candy days," as I call them. On top of that, Lev (home of the fightin' bunnies/hares/whatevs) was considerably more hospitable than JE's ugly sister, Eliot House.

Everything was better this time around--actual heat for the Common Room I slept in on The Game-eve, and incredibly hospitable students for the most part (met some of the dullest H students yet: I'm dressed in my Yale sweater with my Yale hat and Yale scarf and I get countless curious Cantabs asking, "do you go to Yale?" sans sarcasm. One even asked me to swipe them in somewhere and I had to point to my sweater and read it aloud before she realized what she was asking...just wow.)

Anyway, I met a super nice Harvardian named John, which I thought was funny because it's like meeting a Yalie named Elihu (plus it's such a refreshingly generic-sounding name), and we spoke at length about being minorities at the only Ivies that matter and more. Turns out he tries to look extra nerdy walking around Cambridge at night, to look like a less threatening black Harvardian; and I try to look extra tough walking around New Haven at night to look like a more threatening Mexican Yalie.

From our talk, I learned a lot about Harvard. Long story short, while Harvard's food is incredible, everything else just doesn't have as much appeal as Yale. I probably wouldn't even be drawing if I went to Harvard--he confirmed my suspicion that Harvard is just too track-oriented, whereas Yale is more about find yourselfism. Yalies are more willing to let academics slide to put heavy effort into extracurriculars, but it's the reverse at Harvard. John says they're greatly pre-law/med/business, so "you have to keep the numbers high." And in fact, even if Harvies are involved in a bunch of extracurriculars, he says that many are simply nominal members at most with nearly no true participation.

The funniest thing is that regardless of how pointless the organization, Harvard students always make sure they're funded, so the business boards are always the toughest positions to get because they always matter. It's so funny because at Yale it's almost as if business boards are after thoughts--the Yale Record struggled with this for a long while, and it's still not even quite there yet. The Herald is kinda iffy, too. But Crimsonians make sure their organizations are well funded before they even debut.

Ok, the wordcount on this post is embarrassingly high. So just a quick word about today's drawings--I drew them while camping out at Leverett House Saturday thru Sunday. I thought I was tasked with watching some Yalies' gear, so I decided to just stay up drawing all night and watching Cambridge TV. Highlights included "Lock Up," a documentary on Latin gangs, a Masterpiece Theatre movie about a murder, and a community access movie about a murder. Lots of murderers...

Turns out the gear I thought I was supposed to watch over belonged to some totally different person, but I was still stuck at Lev till about 4pm Sunday. More drawings and gossip from the Lev Session to come.


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