Slow Sunday – Welcome Back to NYU

Man, this weekend was so excellent.

I can’t remember the last time I blew a weekend just reading books. I at least remember doing it often before I came to NYU, but somehow these days just got lost in the shuffle since then.

Today was move in day for NYU new students (not just Freshmen! remember the transfers!) It’s been one year since I moved to New York.

Move-in day was occasion for propaganda:

Favorite exchange of the night was here:

NYU security guard walked up to a chalk-er.

NYU: What do you think you’re doing?

Chalker: Chalking. I have something to say, I’m going to write it.

NYU: Not on our property.

Chalker: This isn’t your property. I’m pretty clearly on the sidewalk.

NYU: *snorting laugh* Don’t get NYUsed? What, you didn’t get in? *walks away*

Ironic because chalker not only got in, but is a pretty good student.

Learn more about the park here

but also an occasion for traffic snarls. Saw surprisingly few, less than I remember creating when I moved in. Here’s one that stuck out in my mind. I’m still a little peeved at the audacity of labeling a private police van with ‘public safety.’

“The station wagons arrived at noon a long shining line that coursed through the west campus. In single file they eased around the orange I-beam sculpture and moved toward the dormitories. The roofs of the station wagons were loaded down with carefully secured suitcases full of light and heavy clothing; with boxes of blankets, boots and shoes, stationery and books, sheets, pillows, quilts; with rolled-up rugs and sleeping bags, with bicycles, skis, rucksacks, English and Western saddles, inflated rafts. As cars slowed to a crawl and stopped, students sprang out and raced to the rear doors to begin removing the objects inside; the stereo sets, radios, personal computers; small refrigerators and table ranges; the cartons of phonograph records and cassettes; the hairdryers and styling irons; the tennis rackets, soccer balls, hockey and lacrosse sticks, bows and arrows; the controlled substances, the birth control pills and devices; the junk food still in shopping bags- onion-and-garlic chips, nacho thins, peanut creme patties, Waffelos and Kabooms, fruit chews and toffee popcorn; the Dum-Dum pops, the Mystic mints.
I’ve witnessed this spectacle every September for twenty-one years. It is a brilliant event, invariably. The students greet each other with comic cries and gestures of sodden collapse. Their summer has been bloated with criminal pleasures, as always. The parents stand sun-dazed near< their automobiles, seeing images of themselves in every direction. The conscientious suntans. The well-made faces and wry looks. They feel a sense of renewal, of communal recognition. The women crisp and alert, in diet trim, knowing people’s names. Their husbands content to measure out the time, distant but ungrudging, accomplished in parenthood, something about them suggesting massive insurance coverage. This assembly of station wagons, as much as anything they might do in the course of the year, more than formal liturgies or laws, tells the parents they are a collection of the like-minded and the spiritually akin, a people, a nation.”
-Don DeLillo, White Noise


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