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COVID-19

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MIT staff blogger Matt McGann '00

A ditch on the side of the New Jersey Turnpike by Matt McGann '00

I was just downstairs in the records office, where the mail continues to come in heavily. I decided I’d help with the buckets and buckets of filing to be done. Doing all that filing reminded me of Being John Malkovich (a great but disturbing film, if you haven’t seen it), where John Cusack’s character, Craig, after being unable to find work as a puppeteer tries to find work as a filing assistant. He had a grueling job interview with a doctor:

Dr. Lester: Which of these two letters comes first, this one or this one?

Craig: The symbol on the left is not a letter, sir?

Dr. Lester: Damn, you're good. I was trying to trick you.

Luckily, I already work for Admissions, so I wasn’t subjected to such an interview.

I think Being John Malkovich was already in my mind. Two days ago, my old friend Lex, who I hadn’t seen in ages, dropped by my office. Back when we were students, Lex served as my Vice President when I was President of MIT’s Undergraduate Association, or UA. I digress; more about my experiences with MIT student government another time.

After graduating from MIT, many alums will stick around Boston, usually either working in the area or attending graduate/medical/law school (frequently MIT, often Harvard, sometimes Tufts or Boston University). Sometimes, these alums will band together to rent/buy a house as a group. And, as tradition goes, these nerd houses (as they’re sometimes called) must be named. Some of my friends, thus, live in places like Frogstar World B, Cruftlabs, or the Norris Palace. My house is called Ducksberry. And (finally getting to the point) Lex lives in a house called “Malkovich.”

Coming up with a name for a house can be difficult, and usually the story behind the name of a house is some ridiculous story beyond explanation. “Malkovich,” I learned, was named in honor of a short door in their house, reminiscent of the portal into John Malkovich’s head in the film. And “Ducksberry”? Well, that’s a long and not terribly interesting story, but the short-short version is that it’s a play on the town Duxbury.

Anyway, this is a long way to say that we’re still doing lots of filing of application components. The records office staff will again be working through the weekend. It’s an exciting and busy time of year in the Office of Admissions!

And now, I leave the office, bound for Ducksberry…

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