Wed. Aug 17th, 2022

There are a lot of pressures that come along with writing a weekly column for the newspaper. What’s the biggest burden, you ask? To me, it’s feeling like I need to fill up my article with cool, interesting things I did during the past few days. There’s a persistent voice in my head always coaxing me to make sure that I participate in exciting events throughout the week so I can later chronicle them in this column. I struggle with the thought of it at times though. My brain churns up questions that I would like to believe cross every writer’s mind from time to time. Do people even read what I write? Does anyone understand what I say or what I mean? Do they even care?
Writing this column is a new experience for me in itself, and doing so has actually motivated me to get out there and see what’s going on around campus. Because, let’s face it, no one really wants to read an article about how I just sat in my dorm all week devouring Double Stuffed Oreos and binge-watching Parks and Recreation. I want the readers of So It Goes (however many of them exist out there) to see that there are tons of things to do here on campus, and many of them don’t even require much searching.
Not many things happened this week, recreationally speaking, but there are three events in particular that stick out in my mind: having a long and thought-provoking conversation with Katie in front of the Fredrick Douglas statue, going to see the weekly documentary in Sykes Theater, and attending a Poesis meeting.
It was a chilled and somewhat disheartening Wednesday afternoon when Katie and I sat in front of the Fredrick Douglas statue. We had our hot beverages in hand, courtesy of Starbucks, but they weren’t enough to erase the presence of the bitter wind. We sat out there and talked for probably close to an hour about what it-college, life, etc.- all meant. The conversation kind of reminded me of a situation I often find myself in, blinking my eyes five or six times in a row to see if I’m in a dream, only to realize that’s just how life seems sometimes: like one huge trance. The campus was mostly emptied out, with a few people straggling around after a late afternoon class. The conversation was raw and real, a surprising yet enjoyable midweek occurrence.
The next day, the two of us attended the documentary at Sykes. This week’s offering was Aqua Seafoam Shame. The film told the story of the Pacific Ocean’s garbage patch, which is now the size of the continental US. The content of the film was interesting and informative, but the documentary itself was poorly made and produced. It gave Katie and I (and I’m sure some of the other attendees) a few good laughs. So it goes.
After the film, which lasted a short and sweet 60 minutes, Katie and I helped ourselves to the post-viewing table of fresh fruit and baked goods. We sat in the Multicultural Center, snacking on double fudge cookies and sharing our opinions on the movie, when we were invited to the Poesis meeting by one of its members. We followed the member, who was dawning a gray hat and camouflage jacket (her name is currently escaping me) to the room and moved two chairs to fit into the circular formation the other members had set up. Once the meeting was underway, each willing member volunteered to spit (poetry/rap jargon for all you confused readers out there) his or her spoken word poem. Most members presented from memory, but others had the poems on their phones. It was awe-inspiring to listen to these performances. We sat in silence, listening as the speaker poured his or her heart out into the room, some people nodding in agreement and others verbalizing their appreciation with an occasional “mhm” or “yeah,” and after every recital we showed our love either by clapping or snapping. I couldn’t help but think, if Katie and I had just left right after the film we would have never gotten to experience that.
So I think that I have come to realize that maybe I don’t necessarily have to go looking for things to write about in this column; most of the time they’ll find me. Don’t hesitate to embrace the experiences that find you. They’re all over campus.
Rachel Alfiero is a first-year student majoring in communication studies. She can be reached at RA806657@wcupa.edu. 

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