Tag Archive: Cambridge

  1. To Game or Not to Game

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    Like many other Yalies, I pretended to be incredibly, unprecedentedly and obscenely excited to watch The Game, since football is my favorite sport ever. (Go … blue? (We probably say that, right? Or maybe we say “Old Blue,” for like, Yale?)) Now, however, (and I’m *crying* on the couch as I write this) I will no longer be able to sit in twenty degree weather and watch twenty college boys run around playing a sport I neither understand nor, to be honest, enjoy.

    What changed? Why can’t every Yalie cheer for “Old Blue” this year? Because tickets sold out at 3:30 p.m. on Tuesday, and at 1:00 p.m., I was too busy enjoying my Kitchen Sink Cookies to leave the dining hall and get in line. It was also thirty degrees. And finally, as you may have gleaned from the previous paragraph, I do not actually like football. So, after several texts that described the line for tickets as “over an hour long,” I contentedly dunked what was probably my fifth cookie into a glass of milk and I resolved to spend the weekend exploring Boston, maybe becoming a Hip Big City Girl in the process.

    I was settling down to Google trendy thrift stores in Cambridge, and wondering whether anything near Harvard could possibly be trendy, when it started. Traumatized by the long wait outside of Payne Whitney, friends and acquaintances bombarded my phone with desperate and arbitrary group texts. “DJD U GT GME TCKTSz!1!” was one message, written painstakingly by frostbitten fingers. “Must game” reads another, sent to twenty numbers, six of which I don’t know. And then, “NO U?” “NO ” “CRYING” from at least four people per group, most of whom had probably, earlier that day, complained to their friends, “I don’t even, like, want to go to The Game! I don’t even like football! LOL WHY AM I GOING LOLOL HARVARD SUCKS LOL!” These same people were now reduced to (frozen) tears when they couldn’t find tickets. (A record number of Yale students purchased them this year.)

    Anyway, given all that, I almost threw my phone out the window, before thinking to myself: It will probably get better tomorrow! And, of course, it didn’t. At lunch, my friend told me he bought tickets for a hundred dollars online. I lol’d. He said, in all seriousness, “Yeah, it’s a little expensive, but I’ve never made it to The Game before. I was too drunk last year.” Hopefully he’ll manage it this year, but I suspect those hundred dollars may go to waste. Indeed, even my suitemate Ydna Gineok ’16 has reactivated his Facebook for the SINGULAR purpose of obtaining Game tickets through friends (but probably actually “Free and for sale.”)

    This anxiety is so palpable that even I (I!) am becoming nervous. What will I do at Harvard? In Boston? What if I can’t find trendy thrift shops and I’m stuck doing random things in a city that is, to be frank, New York’s weird and conservative cousin? If I hadn’t already bought bus tickets, I probably wouldn’t go at all. I don’t want to attend stupid mixers; I’m already scared of Yale people, I can’t imagine talking to Harvard kids. Nor do I want to go to my friend’s random a cappella concert, or even my own random slam poetry show. And I’ve seen “The Social Network” — I know you have to be either a Kennedy or Mark Zuckerberg’s cooler younger brother to get into Harvard parties. So, the question remains: What am I doing? Why am I getting on that bus?

    Here’s an answer: part of me (okay, most of me) feels that I should support Yale this weekend in Boston. Even if I don’t go The Game, I’ll be cheering “Old Blue” in spirit.

  2. How Harvard Got Its Stupid Name

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    1636 was a great year to be alive. People gave their kids fun names like Prudence and Chastity. No one had to bother with Daylight Savings Time. Colonists were content to live in harmony on the East Coast, not yet haunted by a bucket-list desire to see the Grand Canyon. Besides the widespread pestilence and despair, things were going pretty well.

    But John Harvard, a minister from Cambridge, Massachusetts, was not so happy with colonial life. Dismayed by the youths he met in his ministerial work, Harvard worried for the future of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. “These young men are kind, simple and God-fearing,” he wrote. “How will they learn to become assholes?”

    Harvard decided to found a university, one that would educate future generations in disciplines like Attending College and Telling People Which College You Attend. However, after a cursory visit to Ye Olde College Confidential, Harvard discovered that the university of his dreams already existed: A School Near Boston, a Cambridge divinity school famous for its vague and condescending name.

    Eager to make a difference, Harvard donated his entire fortune to the university. He also donated his personal library — 87 Bibles, plus one of those word-search placemats from Applebee’s.

    In honor of his generosity, the school would be renamed Harvard College. “We wanted to thank him with a gift from the Hallmark Store or, like, an Edible Arrangement,” wrote A School Near Boston president Francis Smith. “But then you have to send someone to the market, and that could be a whole big thing. This seemed easier.”

    Campus beautification ranked first among John Harvard’s priorities. Describing his architectural ethos as “lots of red rectangles,” Harvard designed the new campus in about ten minutes. For six days Harvard labored, laying bricks until his wrists were sprained and weak. And on the seventh day John Harvard rested, for he had an interview with Goldman on the eighth.

    In an early interview with The Early Crimson, Harvard described his vision for the University. “Finally, a place where white, Christian, land-owning men can flourish,” he said. “If they’re on the list, that is. Also, no freshman boys.”

    But Harvard was also surprisingly progressive for his time. “We look forward to admitting women in the 1970s,” he continued. “We want to wait for the only historical period with worse pants than the ones we wear now.”

    In the years that followed, Harvard College grew in size and clout. On-campus culture expanded with the creation of various social and academic clubs. James Dorner, class of 1639, wrote one of the oldest known diaries documenting Greek life. “I have decided to rush a fraternitee, that I might growe closer to God and bro,” he wrote in the fall of his sophomore year. “Verily, I be so shwasted right now.”

    But for all its salmon-shorted whimsy, Harvard was an incomplete institution. Alone like a yin without a yang, like the YDN without WKND, Harvard College staggered through the rest of the seventeenth century. Adrift. Aimless. Despicable.

    Then everything changed. The year was 1701 — the dawn of a fresh new century filled with horrifying sickness and no penicillin. America was ready for a new university. A university with the size of a small liberal arts college and the resources of a world-class research institution. A university with a more flattering school color. A university better than Harvard in every way.

    Eli Yale made it happen. The donation of his own, far superior personal library (two Applebee’s word-search placemats) to a New Haven college changed the course of human history. The school was renamed Yale in his honor. Harvard students, paralyzed by their school’s competitive social atmosphere, grew jealous of Yalies’ fun parties and sexy, rebellious Gothic architecture. Thus the greatest rivalry in history was born.

    And then a lot of other things happened, and now maybe we might win The Game.

  3. The Tailgate You’re Probably Not Invited To

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    When it comes to Harvard-Yale, even the tailgates are institutions.

    This Saturday will mark the 40th time that Richard Sperry ’68 and Roger Cheever, Harvard ’67, tailgate The Game. The two friends have been tailgating the storied rivalry since 1972 and haven’t missed a game since.

    Wait, 1972? Wouldn’t that make 2013 their 41st consecutive tailgate? Sounds like some Harvard math to us.

    This isn’t a mistake, though. The pair celebrated their 40th consecutive tailgate in Cambridge last year. But Sperry, the Yalie, wasn’t going to let that dampen this year’s festivities at his alma mater.

    “Never mind the fact that we celebrated our 40th in Cambridge last year,” reads the email invitation to the tailgate. “We had a great time, and we’re simply just going to do it again this year in New Haven.”

    That’s the kind of spirit that pervades Sperry and Cheever’s annual party, which they now host with accomplice John Steffensen ’68. Despite their opposing allegiances, the two make sure that the tailgate is about fun and friendship. For these two, rivalry is just an excuse to get together in the first place.

    Ultimately, says Sperry, “It’s just about renewing friendships.”

    Sperry met Cheever while the two were training as officers in the Navy. They became fast friends and attended that first Harvard-Yale game while living together in Boston in 1972 — Yale won, meaning Cheever had to pay for the tickets. But the next year, in an effort to recoup his losses, Cheever insisted that they attend The Game and make the same bet again. The rest is history.

    “The very beginning tailgates are a bit of a blur; it’s so many years ago. I think it involved alcohol and not a lot of food,” Cheever now recalls with a laugh.

    The tradition actually traces its origins to before the two even met. Sperry would attend Yale’s home games with his roommate and his roommate’s parents. The group would set up in Lot B, next to Cox Cage. Sperry and Cheever have claimed the spot as their own for the 20 Yale games they have since attended. Since the tradition’s inception, friends and wives have been added to the mix, along with a host of others. It is now a tailgate of truly epic proportions.

    “Last year, at Harvard, at best guess we had over 150 people there,” Cheever says. It’s not just how many people show up: Who those people are can be equally impressive. Sperry and Cheever can now claim as guests Rick Levin, Tommy Lee Jones and the Bush twins, who brought along a few guests of their own.

    “We wound up with six Secret Service agents with wires behind their ears, trying to look inconspicuous,” Sperry explains with a chuckle. “But they weren’t inconspicuous.”

    The blend of both Harvard and Yale fans is notable as well. Few tailgates attract such a diverse crowd, but the convivial attitude that Cheever and Sperry work hard to maintain draws in fans of all stripes (Sperry says even their Princeton friends have started attending).

    Key to maintaining this friendly mix is Cheever’s “Commencement Punch,” a family recipe handed down since Prohibition that Cheever makes for The Game every year. It’s a blend of rum, honey and fruit juice, and — according to Cheever — has received nothing but rave reviews.

    “No one has ever refused a glass,” he attests with pride. And while the tailgate in its early years included the standard assortment of finger foods and beer, its menu has since expanded to include steak sandwiches and wine. (The hosts refer to the latter as “our acclaimed ‘Boola’ label.”)

    Only once has the tailgate tradition nearly been broken. A few years back, Cheever’s son was playing in the New England Football Championships on the same day as The Game, which was at Yale.

    “There lies a moral dilemma,” Cheever now remembers. “Does one support one’s family, or does one stick with tradition? And we basically did both.” The two managed to finagle their way onto the field at the Yale Bowl at 8 o’clock that morning, where they had a drink and tossed around a football before Sperry drove Cheever directly to Union Station where he caught a train north in time to make kickoff at his son’s game.

    “We now say that we’ve gotten together on game day for 42 years for this ritual, which is absolutely true,” Cheever says. And they don’t plan on stopping. At one point, Sperry recalls, they had a conversation about how long the tailgate would continue, eventually deciding they could see themselves continuing for 50 years. But as that milestone approaches, neither sees any reason to stop.

    “I think we’ll keep on doing it for as long as we can, because it’s fun,” Sperry says.

    But the inevitable question remains: Where is the venerable tailgate most fun?

    Cheever is hesitant to answer. “I have to really think about it,” he murmurs, before eventually settling on his alma mater.

    For Sperry, on the other hand, the answer is an easy one. “I would say it’s more fun at Yale,” he says, his smile palpable even over the phone.

  4. Where There Is No Weekend

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    Last Friday night, we sat on a Harvard shuttle and checked our emails on our phones.

    It was 12:30 a.m. Frankly, we don’t usually check our emails at 12:30 on weekends. But we had already left the party, and we were barely drunk.

    To avoid being overheard, Leah texted Yuval.


    “Kinda sad. I’m sad. At Yale I would be writhing on my rug right now.”

    “I know! OMG. I’d be so drubj”

    “So drunk that texts like that would be ok”

    “But also it’s good cuz we go to Yale.”



    * * *

    The last time we had taken a road trip together, it was to a nudist resort. We couldn’t quite toss that experience from our minds as we drove into Cambridge. Back in the Indian summer of late September, we’d taken a collective gasp before driving up a hill where we stripped and frolicked. That day, we shook off not only our clothes, but also our preconceptions — instead of weirdness, we found a less-than-hippy, kind-of-yuppie sort of grace.

    Now was different.

    Now, as we snaked up I-84 towards Harvard, on what should have been an exhilarating mission to tap into the Crimson party scene, we caught ourselves yawning instead of gasping. We’d caffeinated before hitting the road, but the text messages flooding in were deflating our expectations for a good time. Every buzz on the smartphone announced yet another glum prophet of our Friday night. “Hopefully you find something fun to do, but it is Harvard so the odds are against you,” said one Facebook message from a Cantab friend.

    We fashioned ourselves safari hunters, on the prowl for fun. (And, true to form, by the end of the night we would find ourselves at a jungle-themed frat party.)

    But as we sped north, the message was clear: You won’t find fun at Harvard.

    Let’s be fair. Fun means different things to different people. When Corey Mallone-Smola ’16 went to The Game at Harvard last year, she tapped into a vibrant nightlife — it just wasn’t to her taste. When she stepped into what seemed like a promising dorm party, she found herself face-to-face with a guy boldly reciting the periodic table of elements. He was just hitting Ununbium (Uub) as she walked towards the bar.

    “I took a non-alcoholic Popsicle and walked out,” she said.

    Okay, so maybe Harvard’s a little nerdy, a little needy — the place where some people go, and fail, to shed the mathlete varsity jackets of their high school years. Last summer, when a Philadelphia woman put up a Craigslist ad seeking a lover for her virginal freshman son, nobody feigned too much surprise at the fact that he was Harvard-bound.

    So is Harvard’s problem self-selection? While Yale pulls in an artsier crowd, does Harvard just attract the weird, overambitious loners who don’t know how to let loose on a dance floor? Judging by the number of Harvard students dissatisfied with the scene, we realized the problem was the converse: Harvard just doesn’t provide a common dance floor.

    “There’s no weekend, you know?” said Melanie*, a Harvard sophomore who spoke on the condition of anonymity she believed that given the insular nature of the Harvard social scene, she would be ostracized by the one strictly defined social group to which she belongs. “Even on a Friday night I’m just like, ‘It’s a Wednesday night.’ Nobody’s celebrating together.”

    There’s a scene in “The Social Network” when Mark Zuckerberg resists going to another Caribbean Night at the Jewish frat AEPi — he wants more options. We wanted more options, too — more than just the one Sigma Chi event going on. At Yale the previous weekend, we’d swirled at ease from bash to bash, with layovers at G-Heav. At Harvard, Yuval was nearly barred from the one frat party we could find. Furtively hiding his electronic cigarette, the bouncer explained: The name Yuval Ben-David just wasn’t on the list.

    Leah Motzkin wasn’t on the list, either. But being a girl, she had no trouble getting into the party. And that’s the crux of the matter: an accessible, inclusive Harvard social scene doesn’t exist.

    “There isn’t a Harvard,” Melanie said. “There’s just a place with a bunch of people.”

    * * *

    The week before in New Haven, Yuval had found himself at a naked party.

    It felt like a nudity factory, with a three-step assembly line. You stepped in on the first floor, stripped on the second, partied on the third.

    The beauty of this party was that it felt structured. Participating was as easy as showing up. Docents even helped you put your clothes aside in plastic bags. Just the night before, Yuval had stumbled into a more grassroots naked party in a dorm room. The clumsy intentionality of the party, the awkwardness of reaching a consensus among friends on when to undress — and how much — made for lots of giggling and ended with two guys picking up their clothes and bolting out the door.

    There’s an unwritten code for naked parties. No touching. No standing on high surfaces, so that your genitals don’t make eye contact with people. No signs of arousal. Operating on the collective agreement to not gawk at one another’s junk, and persuaded by the awkwardness of doing so, people at naked parties often find themselves deep in conversation with each other.

    Maybe naked parties are a metaphor for party life at Yale. Yuval went with one friend, but ended up running into other friends at the party, friends from class or the radio station or his residential college — all the overlapping rings that form his life here.

    When Melanie laid out Harvard party life, she explained that every party took place within a fixed group setting. Because Harvard has a large student population — with about 6,700 students in the College — there’s a greater degree of separation between students there than at Yale. In other words, you’re only welcome if you know the host. If you’re going to a party organized by a club or an athletic team, she said, the feel is also exclusive. And at finals clubs or fraternities, there’s often a list at the door. Harvard sophomore Danielle Lee offered advice on tapping into the school’s closed social niches.

    “Some people definitely have difficulty,” she said. “You kind of have to just put yourself out there.”

    Yale’s scene is a bit more fluid, a bit more open.

    While Yuval was baring it all, Leah was at the Oxford Apartments, where she doesn’t live, for a party she technically should not have been invited to. She had received an email the week before — a tasteful Paperless Post invitation adorned by three strokes of paint — requesting her presence at Theta Fall Crush at the Alchemy Lounge. She had RSVP’d yes, looking forward to the several-hour open bar that the event would surely provide. Though not a sister of any of Yale’s three sororities, Leah spent her Saturday night as one of the many girls in heels. The fact that she wasn’t actually in Theta was not an issue. One of her friends wanted her there, so she was.

    * * *

    We’ll admit that we didn’t have the typical Harvard experience.

    We went to a frat party. And even that, just barely.

    There are only three fraternities at Harvard (SAE, AEPi and Sig Chi), and the first two are far from campus. So we ended up at Sig Chi on the heels of a pack of junior girls who had taken pity on our party-less plight. We assumed they knew the local hotspots. They were on the list. We were not. Leah squeezed through the door, but finagling an entrance for Yuval was a tedious diplomatic undertaking. It was only after one friendly junior girl from inside mobilized her Sig Chi connections that they grudgingly allowed entry to the male member of our duo.

    Once inside, the scene we found was reminiscent of SAE late night at Yale. Girls and brothers were playing games of pong, red solo cups in hand. We needed to be drunker than we were, so we followed the sticky red trail down a set of narrow stairs. Entering the dark basement, our bodies slammed against a sea of men in Hawaiian shirts and girls in bikinis.

    We slid into a circle of Harvard girls dancing in the corner. Wallflowers that we were, we took in the scene. The girl-to-guy ratio was high; when we asked one of our new Harvard friends about the demographics of the neon basement, she said dismissively, “They’re from Wellesley or [Boston University].”

    The scene at Harvard’s finals clubs is perhaps the more gilded manifestation of this gender disparity. The single-sex groups (there are eight all-male clubs and five all-female ones) function as the campus’s core social hives.

    Nicole Bassoff, a sophomore at Harvard, tries to avoid them. She thinks their parties are over-glorified and rarely enjoyable. Some nights, the clubs are a sea of girls with only a few club members walking in their midst. Other nights, the parties consist of an awkward, predatory expanse of guys surrounding only a handful of girls. Every night at a finals club, she said, involves “slopping around.”

    At The Game last year, Leah experienced a night like the first Bassoff described. She and a group of girl friends had left their male friends behind on the steps of the Owl Club, an all-male Harvard finals club. Laughing at the image of her friends pouting outside, Leah stopped short inside a dark, wood-paneled room. Scantily clad women packed the space while a few guys danced around them, exuding an air of entitlement. Danielle Ellison ’15 summed up Leah’s feelings perfectly when, reflecting on her own experience at last year’s Game, she said, “You feel like you’re at a country club turned into a strip club.”

    Many Harvard students interviewed declined to comment on the record for fear of being removed from the lists that have come to dictate their social lives. One Harvard junior, Jennifer*, remarked that any betrayal of her identity would endanger both her social standing and that of her sorority. She recounted a conversation she once overheard between partygoers at finals clubs — most of whom, she noted, are not Harvard students. “I have actually walked in behind them saying to one another ‘Okay, ladies, find a place to sleep tonight, or find your future husbands’,” she said. In Boston, a city home to dozens of undergraduate institutions, the opportunities for sexual encounters are plentiful — and the movement of partiers from school to school can sometimes resemble a game of musical chairs. For many female college students, Harvard is a prime destination, resulting in a campus social scene that seems to revolve around males. Ellison articulated one difference she perceived between Yale and Harvard’s party cultures.

    “[In Cambridge] nobody cared who you are, whether you were from Harvard or Yale or BU,” she recalled. “At Yale, you enter parties as groups of friends, you don’t enter a party as a girl — at Harvard, you’re girls being brought in as opposed to friends being welcomed.”

    * * *

    As we walked towards our car at the weekend’s end, a male student with his chest taped to a tree called out at Leah, asking for her phone number. It was the Harvard equivalent to Yale’s senior society tap night, combined with elements of a fraternity rush. The “punch process,” as it is called, is a two- to four-week period in which sophomore “neophytes” earn their coveted spots in Harvard’s vaunted finals clubs. The process is shrouded in secrecy. Only after securing anonymity did one Harvard student divulge some of the tasks required of students during this period. For the Phoenix, she said, one friend was called on to catch a fish in the Charles River. For the Porcellian, another purchased a pig and let it loose in one of the freshmen houses.

    But however distasteful these tasks, Harvard freshmen await them as a necessary evil — perhaps even a rite of passage.

    “The Harvard social scene is very hierarchical,” Harvard freshman Kennedy Edmonds said, “and freshman boys are at the very bottom.” He was initially dissatisfied by the role Harvard forced him to play in their social culture, but he has since begun to view it in a more positive light. Edmonds said the common experience has allowed him to form close friendships with other freshmen boys. If nothing else, he is excited for the years to come.

    “Social life at Harvard gets better every year for boys and worse every year for girls,” Becky said. In their first week, freshmen rely on the finals club scene. Freshmen girls, that is. According to Bassoff, life for freshmen boys is “kind of miserable.” Their social lives consist of waiting to rush a frat or to be punched by a finals club in their sophomore year.

    For freshmen girls, the scene is less exclusive. While Moni Awolesi said she does not go out often, she has never felt unwelcome at a party. Still, what the Cantabs are lacking did not escape her. Looking up at us from her table at Veggie Planet, she asked, “Harvard-Yale is better when it’s at Yale, right?”

    * * *

    Back on Yale’s campus the following night, we found one another again, this time on the steps of Sigma Nu. Yuval was arriving from a feminist zine release party, and Leah was coming back from the Oaxaca bar, where she had shared margaritas with her suitemates. We embraced and were happy to wait our turn in line, secure in the knowledge that we would both be let in and be able to toast the end of our adventure together.

  5. New Haven vs. Cambridge: Who wins?

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    Want to hear a joke?

    Cambridge, Massachusetts.

    Although Harvard and Yale’s football players have yet to strap on their shoulder pads and hit the field, Cambridge and New Haven have been battling all week in other forms. The Boston Globe printed an article titled “Smackdown: Cambridge vs. New Haven,” which placed the two cities in an Ivy League brawl. While The Globe made some legitimate points about the Elm City, its fundamental conclusion that the dispute would result in a tie is misguided: New Haven is clearly superior.

    “The best thing about Cambridge is New Haven is but a train ride away,” Yale spokesman Michael Morand ’87 DIV ’93 said.

    As a general matter, New Haven is the place to be.

    Take it from Kate Young GRD ’16, who was an undergraduate at Harvard.

    “I think New Haven has a lot more character to it than Cambridge does,” Young said. “Harvard Square is sterile and commercialized.”

    The Globe’s article looked at nine categories: Lying Statues, Famous Music Club, Sports Bar, Dinner on Mom and Dad, Souvenir, Hamburger, Art Museum, Best Dinosaurs Without Tenure and Historic Moment. In the first four of these items, according to The Globe, Harvard reigned superior. The second four belonged to Yale, and the last category was called a tie.

    There are several flaws in The Globe’s reasoning. First, the fact that Toad’s Place is even listed as a “Famous Music Club” is an automatic win for New Haven.

    As for the lying statue, Harvard rightfully owns this category: Harvard students do tell better lies. Just ask the entire class of “Government 1310: Introduction to Congress.”

    University Properties Director Abigail Rider disagreed with Harvard’s argument that Cambridge is superior because of its available shops and myriad of tourists, though she admitted that New Haven tourists have “balked” at offers of a free Yale tattoo while waiting for a tour of the University.

    The Globe gave one food category each to New Haven and Cambridge. New Haven was named the hamburger champ and Cambridge won the “Dinner on Mom and Dad” category.

    But New Haven dominated the hamburger scene, thanks to Louis’ Lunch. Billy Bartley, the general manager of the Cambridge burger joint that was competing with Louis’, said he was not impressed with the choice. Though Louis’ may have invented the hamburger, Bartley said Mr. Bartley’s perfected it.

    “A caveman invented how to cook, but I don’t want to do it that way,” he said. A century ago, when the hamburger sandwich was invented at Louis’ Lunch, people were still going to the bathroom outside, he added.

    On the other hand, the owner of Louis’s Lunch, Jeff Lassen, was honored to be named number one.

    “We’re proud to be a part of that tradition, and be included in the occasion,” Lassen said. “We stand tall with New Haven and Yale.”

    The Crimson most notably went wrong in the category that it created: football.

    The Crimson asserted that football is “the most important comparison” and that history shows Harvard is the “clear victor.”

    Other than being patently untrue, as Yale leads the overall series 65-55-8, it is not the most important measure of Cambridge or New Haven. Like any other metropolis, these cities are defined by people, and this is where New Haven has the clear advantage.

    “New Haven has kind of a more small town feel,” Steffina Yuli ’16 said, “It’s more homey.”

    Jennifer Bimonte-Kelly, one of the seven grandchildren of Frank Pepe, who founded New Haven’s famous Pepe’s Pizzeria 87 years ago, certainly feels that way.

    “What do I love about New Haven? It’s like I’m part of the family of New Haven,” Bimonte-Kelly said, “The people in the streets, Libby’s, Consiglio’s, and even Sally’s, we’re all a family.”

    As for the Yale-Harvard rivalry, over the years she has seen plenty of Yale-Harvard weekends, and each is full of liveliness.

    “When it’s the Yale-Harvard game, it’s the buzz, there’s a different kind of energy,” she said. “Even the night before, it’s strange, it’s fun, it’s crazy.”

    Whatever you want to call it, the Yale-Harvard weekend is upon us.

    Let the best football team win, and let the best city always be the Elm City.