Author Archives: Mad Joy

Caro Raclin ’08, Ed Kennedy Jr. ’83 & family on Oprah

Caro Raclin ’08, Edward M. Kennedy, Jr. ’83, and the rest of the late Massachusetts Senator Ted Kennedy H’84‘s immediate family will be on Oprah on Wednesday.  According to New York Time’s “The Caucus” blog:

After avoiding the public eye for three months, Victoria Reggie Kennedy, the widow of the late Senator Edward M. Kennedy of Massachusetts, will appear on “The Oprah Winfrey Show” on Wednesday.

It will be Mrs. Kennedy’s first interview since her husband died of brain cancer on Aug. 25. Her stepson, Edward M. Kennedy Jr., and her children from a previous marriage, Curran and Caroline Raclan, will join her, according to the show’s Web site.

…Mrs. Kennedy will talk to Ms. Winfrey about her relationship with her late husband, his newly published memoir, “True Compass,” and “their treasured time together at the end of his life,” according to

Despite the sad circumstances, I look forward to hearing what they have to say.

Just opened: Tschudin Chocolates

Today I randomly stumbled into Main Street’s “Sweet Smelling Savour Chocolates” for the first time in a while – and was delighted to meet Rob Tschudin, extremely recent new owner of the store (he only bought the place this past week).  The store has always had some pretty interesting chocolates – Thai Curry, for example? White Zinfandel? – but Rob is in the process of re-vamping the chocolate line-up, promising to make them even crazier and more interesting and more delicious.  Somehow I wound up staying with him for about an hour, talking about his life and his plans for the store.

Tschudin has studied molecular gastronomy, has a law practice, used to work as a pastry chef and at BrewBakers and elsewhere, and even used to be a tightrope walker.   Though the sign still says “Sweet Smelling Savour Chocolates,” he’s working to redesign the space to better suit Tschudin Chocolates, complete with possible plans for an artistic statue to use as a “sandwich board” – minus the sandwich, plus lots of chocolate.

I’m not sure what Tschudin Chocolates will exactly turn out to be, but I’m confident it will be awesome.  The chocolates I tried were excellent, and he’s getting some exciting chocolates ready in time for graduation weekend.  Definitely worth checking the place out!  I can’t wait to see what chocolates he comes up with next.

Check it out – corner of Main St. and Court.

Wes alumni to present at White House coffeehouse

The New York Times is reporting about a pretty sweet event tonight at the White House.  Rachel Swarns writes:

On tap at the White House on Tuesday night? A poetry jam — with smooth jazz, cool verses and spoken word. The literary and musical event in the East Room will include the actor James Earl Jones, the writers Michael Chabon and Ayelet Waldman (who are husband and wife), the jazz singer and bassist Esperanza Spalding and the pianist Eric Lewis. Lin-Manuel Miranda, who wrote and starred in “In the Heights,” the Broadway musical that won a Tony last year, will also perform. It is part of an effort by the Obamas to open up the White House and celebrate the country’s diverse art scenes. The event, which is scheduled to begin at 7:45 p.m., will be shown live at

Awesome.  Lin-Manuel Miranda is class of ’02 and Ayelet Waldman is class of ’86.  Wish I could be there for that event!  Possibly worth watching online in 2 hours.

Thank You…

Someone on the Anonymous Confession Board started a thread called “Thanks” and started it off by saying:

Did someone give you their last box of wheat thins so you could have dinner on tuesday night? What about a hug after your parents called in tears? Have an important conversation with someone on your hall you never thought you would talk to? Hear “I love you” and know they meant it?

Let’s begin a post thanking those who helped us. Positivity and compassion might ease the mourning process.

I want to post this Thank You on a more public forum than on the Anonymous Confession Board – I want the people we’ve thanked to be able to see it.

So, thank you…

  • To the Wesleyan parents and alumni who offered their homes to people scared to stay on campus
  • To the professors who were sympathetic and understanding about final exams at this time
  • To the Middletown Police, for getting to the scene so quickly and working tirelessly to figure this case out
  • To those people who cleared off Foss Hill so fast and possibly prevented… well, let’s not think about that.
  • To Bon Appetit and those who brought us lunch for free while it wasn’t safe to leave our residences
  • To everyone who called to check up on us and offered support, on campus and off
  • To those people on campus who opened up their homes to people who didn’t want to be alone
  • To the administration for their appropriate reaction and frequent, transparent updates to the student body

In this time of tragedy and mourning, thank you to everyone who showed compassion and support to members of the Wesleyan community when it was most needed.

Community Check-In & Shabbat Services & Dinner tonight


Rabbi David Leipziger Tevah sends the following message, “As our campus returns to something resembling normalcy, I hope the complex and painful process of grieving and healing will slowly begin to unfold.  Please know that the Bayit is open and there are many ways for us as a community to join together.”

Students who are looking for a safe space to talk, support, and hear from others may join each other in the Bayit for a “Jewish community check in” at 5:30 pm.  Tonight there will be Shabbat services at 6 pm in the Bayit.  And then there will be a Shabbat dinner at 7:30 pm.  All these events are open to the entire campus – not just Jewish students – and we welcome everyone to join us for any or all of them.

Rabbi David also says that, “If I can be of help, feel free to stop by 169 High St (corner with Church St, second floor).”

Morgan reportedly turned himself in at Meriden police station

WFSB is reporting:

The Boulder, Colo., man suspected in the fatal shooting of a 21-year-old Wesleyan University student has turned himself in to police in Meriden, sources said Thursday night.

Police in Middletown were called to pick up the suspect, 29-year-old Stephen Morgan. He was in their custody as of 10 p.m.

The Meriden Record Journal is reporting:

MERIDEN – Police have taken a man into custody and are questioning him as a suspect in Wednesday’s shooting of a Wesleyan University student.

Officers confirmed that the suspect was found in South Meriden earlier this evening and has been taken to Meriden Police Headquarters, but said the identity of the man has not been confirmed.

The Middletown Police Department sent representatives to work with police.

Johanna Justin-Jinich, 21, was shot several times Wednesday by a gunman wearing a wig at her job inside Broad Street Books, a popular student bookstore.

Police have not released any additional information at this time.

The Hartford Courant says:

Stephen Morgan called 911 Thursday night and Meriden police picked him up. He was taken to police headquarters, and then turned over to Middletown officers, who have been leading an intensive investigation into the Wednesday afternoon killing of Johanna Justin-Jinich, 21, inside a Middletown bookstore.

Meriden police declined to confirm or deny that Morgan was in custody and referred questions to Middletown police.

Police were double-checking to ensure the man they have in custody is Morgan because he had no ID on him, but he did give officers the suspect’s correct Social Security number, a law enforcement official said. Morgan told police he’d been out in the rain since the shooting.

Dinner on campus

Wesleyan students, please check your e-mail for details about dinner plans, in case you haven’t already. I don’t think these dinner plans should be public info.  Just in case.

Gunman still at-large; made threats against Wes/Jews

According to a campus e-mail and a public news conference (viewable here), the gunman “expressed threats in his personal journal toward Wesleyan and/or its Jewish students.”  We’re all being urged to stay inside our residences.  Basically everything that requires people walking around campus has been canceled – professors mostly aren’t coming to campus, dining halls aren’t open, and all meetings should be canceled.  Wesleyan students, check your e-mail for info about how to acquire lunch safely.

As you’ve probably noticed, Wesleying isn’t the most up-to-date source for information on this developing story.  The site is having problems with bandwidth overload – we have put measures in place to make the site load more easily and reduce this problem, but it’s not perfect.  The ACB has the most up-to-date (if sometimes incorrect and unnecessarily panic-inducing) info, and the campus alerts have all the necessary info.

Also, NBC has reported additional details about how Stephen  Morgan knew Johanna; apparently she had filed complaints against him in 2007.

Stay safe, Wesleyan.

[EDIT by Sheek, 12:23 pm]

To reiterate Beau’s latest post, get the most up-to-date info on the situation from the Campus Security newsreel.

Call your parents.

If you’re safe right now, and you haven’t done so already, please call your parents and let them know you’re OK. If they’ve heard about this on the news, they will be freaking out right now.

Adult Bat Mitzvah Party!


Rachel Merzel ’12 sends in:

Bring your swashbuckling booty to the hockey rink this weekend to help us celebrate Jennie’s Bat Mitzvah! There will be a DJ, dancing, GIANT INFLATABLE OBSTACLE COURSE, and tons of super awesome people.

However, we still need your help to make this party happen. If you’re interested in volunteering to help make this the greatest Bat Mitzvah party ever, PLEASE sign up using the google spreadsheet.
Questions? Contact Rachel Merzel (rmerzel@wes), Rachel Santiago (rtsantiago@wes), or Bill Kaplan (wkaplan@wes).
When: Sat., May 2nd from 10:00 pm – 2:00 pm
Where: Freeman Athletic Center – Hockey Rink
Cost: FREE!!!
Please feel free to get decked out in your pirate regalia (although we certainly won’t make you walk the plank if you don’t).