At last, a column with an opinion

Recently, I’ve been getting a lot of letters from concerned readers.

“Dear King,

How much thought do you put into your columns? Two, three seconds? I think the Yale community deserves a little more effort. [unsigned]”

“Dear King,

I cut out your column every week, but only so that I have something to line my hamster’s cage. Just thought you should know.

Sincerely,

Dick Brodhead”

From economics major William Edwards ’02: “I disagree with a key point in your discussion of globalization in last week’s column. Your living wage argument lacks perspective. Market forces will naturally result in an equilibrium wage based jointly on employers’ demand for work and the laborers’ desire to work.” I think this one might have been addressed wrong.

From Michael Barbaro ’02, former Editor-in-Chief of the Yale Daily News: “While other YDN columnists try to make their mark on Yale’s social and political consciousness by maintaining a dialogue on contemporary issues, you insist on submitting ramblings about butt hair. Thanks for nothing.”

“Dear King,

Does your column have a point? Do you have a worthwhile opinion about anything?

Love, Mom”

Are people really upset about this? Does everyone think my column is totally irrelevant? That certainly wasn’t my original intention. When I started writing the column, I was an idealist. I thought I could change the world with my pen, or at least with my typing finger. I imagined future historians poring through my by-then-ancient writings and saying, “Yes, this is when the Golden Age began.”

But apparently, if I am to believe my critics, a photograph of me with a Burger King crown on my head does not engender inspiration or respect. Who knew?

Okay, so maybe my columns have been a little “fluffy.” But I don’t always feel that I am as qualified as some others to address really complicated issues. It’s not that I am not intelligent enough. But when I declared as an astronomy major two years ago, I chose to commit the functioning portion of my brain to nasty things like integrals and the Hertzsprung-Russell diagram. I don’t have extra room in my skull for anything other than sophomoric humor. Inanity thus ensues.

Consider yourself warned.

And now, my two cents for this week. Well, four cents, actually. Barely, though. More like three and a half.

1. I have determined that University Properties must employ an infinite number of baboons to draft an infinite number of leases on an infinite number of typewriters. That is the only way that they could generate such random, inappropriate ideas like putting Alexia Crawford on Broadway and replacing Krauszer’s with a greeting card store.

Several of the baboons who type for University Properties apparently were in charge of the Tercentennial Show. That would explain why the laser show during the interminable “Anything Goes” medley included such random images as a piano player, a giant hornet and a parrot having a seizure.

2. It was probably also the baboons’ idea to set up dining hall employees at the “gourmet boxed dinner” area to swipe our ID cards through card-swiping machines that weren’t even plugged in.

3. William F. Buckley, Jr. is a freak.

4. Bill Clinton kicked ass. He had this charisma about him, some quality that made people think he was speaking directly to them. Did you see the girls running after his car down Elm Street on Saturday? That dude’s a one-man boy band.

(I kind of felt bad for President Levin, Clinton’s sidekick on Saturday afternoon, because he obviously can’t compete. He doesn’t have Secret Service. He can’t play the saxophone. He isn’t followed around by throngs of screaming coeds. It must be pretty humiliating when an undergraduate from the university of which you are president hands you a piece of paper and a pen and asks, “Can you give this to President Clinton to autograph, my name’s Sara, thanks.”)

President Clinton was also very affectionate. I waited patiently after his speech to shake his hand, but when he got to me, he kissed me on the cheek and told me he loved me. Oh no, wait, he did that to the girl standing next to me. But it felt like he was kissing me. There’s that charisma again.



JP Nogues is a senior in Davenport College.

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