Saturday, December 19, 2009

An Open Letter to Undergraduate Admissions Officers Everywhere

I founded an out-of-school ultimate Frisbee club that recently hosted two very successful tournaments (one of which raised nearly two hundred dollars to build wells in Africa), and I serve as a captain for the in-school club. I was historian for my marching band in tenth and eleventh grade, and now I’m vice-president. I was also a section leader during my junior and senior years. I’m in the Tri-M Music Honors Society, and, out of school, I organize and MC for group of student musicians that perform monthly at local nursing homes. I was recently promoted from JV to varsity on the Academic Competition team. I’ve been in Model UN for three years. I play club squash for the school and percussion in the pit orchestra during the musical (this year it’s “Into the Woods”). I regularly update a creative writing and photography blog ( and am currently working on a full-length screenplay tentatively titled "FOOTAGE". This summer I did daily clerical work for a family law firm a few minutes away from my house, and the summer before that I interned for a political campaign and taught piano at a homeless shelter. I sing in and accompany my school’s chorus (for which I received a Service and Leadership award in tenth grade), and I arrange music for the “Voice Males”, an all-male a capella group I perform with. I’m an active member in my school’s National Honors Society, I play chess every now and then, and I can operate most two-axel motor vehicles without terrible difficulty. On a good day, without much wind, I can pull an ultimate disc seventy yards or run a mile in eight minutes, but not at the same time (sorry). Last night I won a family game of Scrabble because my mom didn’t play her Z and so she lost ten points when I finished playing all of my tiles. Regrettably, I’ve never measured my vertical leap, but I’m told it’s probably not bad for someone of my height, which is five feet seven inches (in case you were wondering).

Sunday, December 06, 2009

In Brief Defense of Summer

It is a poor night for this sort of thing. Three days, and you could be convinced without issue - the snow would be dirty and gray and sparse and the afternoon would be far too bright to be in love with the season - but tonight I am reminded of something that has troubled me for some time now: there is nothing pretty about summer.

Fall has leaves and spring has flowers and if you will look out the window you will see what is to love about winter, clogging up our transportation and knocking out our power and looking so gosh-darned attractive while doing it. Winter has Christmas carols and mittens; summer has sweat and sunburn. It's a frustrating idea for someone who doesn't like running in the cold.

But while winter may be the perfect time for hibernation, for introspection, I maintain that summer is a time for growth: for flings and floats and forehands. Winter is a time for romance and precision; summer is a time for sand and energy. Winter is ridged and varied, like those endless mountain peaks that stretch high into the icy fogs, but summer is flat, plain (plane). You can see for twelve miles in any direction, and the possibilities are endless.