Enterlude by Natanya K. '14
Brought to you by the letter "L", for Late, Lame, and real Life. Or something like that. (Also, The Killers!)
“So, you gonna play?” I said, raising an eyebrow expectantly at Daniel M. ’14.
It was ten at night, and in the East Campus courtyard—littered with trees and illuminated by flashing, multicolored lights—the East Side party raged on. Tech-y house music thumped through the disgustingly humid air while students from all across campus displayed dance skills ranging from “decent” to “huh, that’s a little weird, but okay” and “is that even legal?” Crowds stared in awe at the towering EC rollercoaster, which stood terrifyingly untested (and, thus, unpopulated); little clusters of people gathered, respectively, around the giant Etch-a-Sketch, rotating wooden centrifuge ride, and car-sized pirate-ship—which, as I later learned, was destined to wage intra-campus aqueous warfare.
I’d ditched all the aforementioned features for the apple of my childhood-reliving eye, the glory of the East Side party: 3-D Twister. I stood before the short, white rock-climbing wall spray-painted with Twister dots, gesturing encouragingly at Daniel in the hopes of securing a game buddy.
“Nah,” he said, shaking his head. “I’ll sit this one out. You have fun, though.”
“Fine, fine,” I laughed, turning and flagging down the guy perched on top of the wall, who balled up a white t-shirt covered in even more Twister polka-dots and tossed it down to me. Tugging it on over my top, I grinned, bounded up the wall, found a foothold, and prepared to contort my way to victory.
Welcome to REX.
One of the first things you learn when you get to college is that there’s a pretty universal handful of questions that all freshmen ask each other when they first meet. Not to suggest that we’re not, in fact, fabulously creative people capable of dazzling, captivating, and generally worldly smalltalk over tea and crumpets (daintily eaten with raised pinkies, of course). Perish the thought! But we do need a baseline—a bare minimum, a foundation we can build opinions and relationships on later, when the flash-bang chaos of REX and Orientation ends.
So, to start, my name is Natanya K. ’14. Er, well, not really. My parents weren’t cruel enough to give me a name with numbers and symbols, √† la internet handles. But for the sake of tradition, year, and, I suppose, potential e-stalking, I’ll leave it as is. Natanya is pronounced Nuh-TAWN-Yuh (like “Tanya” with a “Na” in front! Or so I tell people so they don’t call me Natasha), and while I tend to prefer it over nicknames, I’ll occasionally go by Nate on the lacrosse field, or Tanya while around small children.
I hail from sunny San Diego, and have thus never owned a pair of rainboats. I also neglected to bring an umbrella with me when I came out because oh it’s still summer there. I’ll be fine. HAH. WRONG. I didn’t see the sun for my first four days here because OH GOD POURING RAIN. But then it spiked into the high nineties with a bajillion percent humidity for a week. And then a hurricane hit! And now it’s fall. For the moment, anyway. Since I made my college choice partially because I wanted to go to a place with identifiable seasons instead of just multiple variations on summer, I suppose I shouldn’t complain. Build a weather machine, maybe, but save the complaints for another time.
To briefly nutshell myself: I’m a veteran lacrosse player, and a rookie rugby player; I’m horrible at the arts, with the (possible) exception of creative writing, but I love music something fierce, and harbor a doomed desire to become skilled in the art of hip-hop dancing; math is my absolute worst subject; I frivolously dream of heading down to South Africa to see the great white sharks; I’m a connoisseur of bad reality television, a poker aficionado, a Jew, a Chargers fan, and, as of May 3rd, 2010, a student of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
If you’d asked me even a year ago where I thought I’d be now, MIT would be the last place I would have said—if I’d even thought to say it. I’ve gone from knowing exactly what I want to do here to being thoroughly undecided, and I don’t have the faintest clue how I’m going to keep up with everything on my plate—but, for the life of me, I can’t imagine anywhere else I’d rather be.
With regards to the reasons I’m here, I’ll just say, for now, that they’re many, varied, and occasionally kismet-tastic. I’ll be writing more about those later, but the gist of it? I’m a starry-eyed frosh who thinks that MIT is the best place in the universe. As for whether that’ll last, who knows? Maybe, come four years from now, MIT will have knocked those stars clean out of my sockets. Possibly with a firehose.
But somehow, I doubt it.