Lawrence’s real issue

Mac Watson

With all this talk about what we think are problems on our campus, maybe we’re just ignoring the elephant in the closet: the climate. I come from Milwaukee, and thinking I could handle ice and snow, decided to travel only an hour and a half north for college. I had no idea that going to college in Appleton was such a Shakletonion task.
Maybe the real way to woo students to our campus is to situate ourselves where the word “winter” fails to represent the six months of permafrost clinging to frozen, rocky ground. The new campus center will be beautiful and convenient, but is only really a boon to the students in Sage, because the extra two blocks it requires students to walk from Kohler may just convince them to transfer en masse to University of Miami.
I can usually make it to class in December without lifting my feet by just skating across the ice sheet that used to be a sidewalk. The fifteen pounds everyone gains at college tend to be a positive at Lawrence, a behavior similar to bears gorging before hibernation. Our campus also begins to understand why Wisconsin consumes more brandy than any other place in the world. Sometimes a coat just is not enough to protect from the stinging wind-chill.
I was talking to my friend who goes to college in California about her nasty case of strep throat, and halfway through the conversation, I realized that even with a painful virus and chilling fever, she probably felt better than I did venturing outside every day. She was at least suffering in shorts, while the last time I saw the sun on television I had trouble recognizing it. I tend to keep my shades closed in winter, because a look outside can make me consider leaping out.
Maybe the real estate crisis and devaluation of ex-burban homes can teach Lawrence the cardinal rule of real estate still holds true — location, location, location. We can still pretend to be tortured intellectuals even without both our workloads and climate demanding it of us, so let’s address our one real issue. Maybe we’ll be in a good enough mood to try tackling the other ones.

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