Title and Author: Educated by Tara Westover
Rating: 5 Michael Roths, with a side of Sweet Potato Fries
Title and Author: Educated by Tara Westover
Rating: 5 Michael Roths, with a side of Sweet Potato Fries
I remember the first full-price clothing item I ever bought. No discounts. No coupon. It was my first semester at Wesleyan, and I had to get a black dress for my WesWinds concert. My mom and I had gone to Zara to check their overwhelmingly black aesthetic, and I found a black dress with a lace top. I thought it was the perfect dress until I checked the price tag. $50. We both knew that we would have to wait forever for that dress to go on sale, and I didn’t own an appropriate dress for my concert, which was quickly approaching.
My mom gave me a look and said hadi, which translates into a bunch of things in English. It can mean come on, let’s, but in this situation, it meant, we’re going to ignore the price because this is a pretty dress. Screw it, let’s buy it. It also meant, let’s do this quickly before my wallet changes its mind.
For most of my life, I’ve been much more accustomed to hand-me-downs and clearance rack finds than full-price fashions and expensive trends. Growing up, my favorite outfit was a sequined denim jumpsuit that had been passed down to me. This was, in retrospect, absolutely ridiculous and marginally over-the-top for a pre-teen to wear, but it was special to me. Our hand-me-down system was cross-continental: my friend’s mom would pass down her daughter’s clothes to me, where I would get some use out of it, and then those clothes were packed away to be brought to my cousins in Turkey, where the cascade of hand-me-downs began again: starting with one of the middle cousins, to the one slightly younger, to the second-cousin-twice-removed-or-what-we-just-call-cousin down the line. As long as it was in wearable condition, it was passed down.
Upon one of my visits back home, I saw one of my cousins wearing a dress that I remember wearing in elementary school: white, with some red, orange, and yellow flowers scattered along the hem and waistline. It was one of my favorite dresses; now, it had been passed down two bodies before reaching my cousin’s closet.
The topic of clothing within a low-income family is complex: a web of societal standards of dress combined with financial barriers. I had learned quickly that my mom and I could not afford regular-priced clothing, so our trips to the Gap consisted of darting toward the sale section, calculating sales tax on each item, never crossing the line between clearance and regular-priced, avoiding lusting over a dress that we couldn’t afford. My wardrobe’s guiding logic was out of season: we bought summer clothes in the winter when it went on sale and winter clothes at the beginning of summer, estimating how much I would grow in the meantime. On the few occasions my mom and I went through the in-season section, we would take a mental note on the clothes we would wait to go on clearance, eventually buying them a few months later. This was our process; we waited for coupons, for credit card rewards, for the hand-me-downs supplementing my needs in the meantime.
Title and Author: Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng
Rating: 5 Michael Roths, with a side of Dessert Parfait.
Tl;dr (except you wr): In a small town in 1970s Ohio, Lydia, the daughter of a mixed Chinese-American family is found dead in a nearby lake. Lydia is the apple of her parents’ eyes, the favorite of the three Lee kids, and their apparent perfect family tree falls apart as the investigation begins. Everything I Never Told You dissects a multitude of trauma: immigrant, mixed, Asian, and uncertainty. The novel follows both the investigation of Lydia’s death by delving into the backstories of both her parents, revealing a complicated story of love, betrayal, and ultimately, understanding.
Welcome to 2019, where we all decide to embark on a new resolution to eat healthier, maybe make it to Freeman, or actually go to class for once.
Saadia (sdz) and I have been exchanging book recommendations for some time now, and after a caps-lock induced discussion, the Book-slying was born/birthed/created. I’ve decided to invest in some self-care by reading a book at least every two weeks, and instead of incessantly posting about the books I read on Instagram, I (we) will take the time to review what we’ve been procrastinating our work with.
But let’s be honest, I will continue to incessantly post about the books I’m reading. It’s just the way I am.
The goal for this series is to come with a book review every week, alternating between the two of us, making each of us responsible for a book every two weeks. Melisa reads a lot, Saadia does not. This is an attempt to bridge that gap.
Read below the jump for an explanation of the rating system!
To say it’s been a wild year would be an insult to things that deserve the title “wild.” But, here we are, a month into reflecting and trying to understand what even happened in 2018, publishing this article to try to find some sense. And what other than to write about a year at an institution that makes no sense during any given year?!
Yes, friends, I am going to try to review this very confusing year––and bonus: I wasn’t even on campus for half of it! Because I am perpetually on the Internet, I have been filled in on the ~happenings~ last semester and will try my best to give 2018 the little justice it deserves.
Disclaimer: this is a subjective process, and things change at Wesleyan sometimes very quickly, but also sometimes veeeeery slowly. If I’ve missed something, let us know at staff[at]wesleying[dot]org. Send us your funny moments, your important moments…just all the moments.
Because this year was just…a lot…I’m going to do my best to organize this information as effectively as possible.
Over the past year-and-a-half, students and administrators have been working together in the First-Generation, Low-Income (FGLI) Committee to address gaps of resources for underrepresented students on campus. (You can read a more detailed interview about the history of the FGLI Committee here.) I’ve been involved with the committee since it was created the spring of my first-year in 2017, and have focused on both financial aid initiatives and academic accessibility via the Office for Equity and Inclusion.
A topic of conversation was the financial aid application process itself, and how it’s stressful waiting until late June/July to find out your financial aid package. As it stood, the deadline for all documents was May 15th, just after the CSS Profile closes. However, due to some changes to the documentation required in the application, Wesleyan’s financial aid office now creates our packages from the previous year’s tax forms (i.e. 2017), rather than the current year’s (i.e. 2018).
Because moving the deadline up doesn’t affect the availability of the necessary tax forms, the financial aid office decided to push the deadline four months up to January 15th, 2019 so they can receive all information faster and give us notification earlier. When searching through my emails, I ~discovered~ that this was announced in November, with some subsequent reminders of the new date.
Welcome to the third installment of Procrastination Destination, where Wesleying provides you #content to get you through finals!
If you’re the same type of perpetually stressed as I am, then you also decide to bake/make/chef-it-up during finals season to take some productive time off from studying or staring at Netflix, pretending to study. Baking is a ~thing that I do~ while blasting some dramatic music because at least I’m doing something, even if it isn’t homework.
I have a slightly well-known recipe for Mocha Spice cupcakes that I came up with after experimenting in the kitchen a few years back. They’ve made their way to Wesleyan a few times, notably when I baked over three dozen and delivered them to students after spring break. I normally try to bake a batch while I’m home and share the ~goods~ with friends, and it’s quickly become a favorite treat.
The thing is, I don’t *really* have a recipe. I follow this Turkish thing called göz ayar?, which directly translates to eye measurement, which completely makes sense (I hope). Essentially, I know how much to throw into the measuring bowl after making these cupcakes time and time again. The point is, the recipe’s ingredients are always in a dynamic flux depending on what I have laying at home.
The “recipe” I’m going to share is meant to be broken; it’s meant to be experimented with. If you don’t like a particular ingredient, literally just take it out. Wanna add something? Go for it! This recipe is supposed to look like absolute freakin’ chaos…because it is. This is essentially the cupcake in its core, and sometimes I play around with some ~extras~, which I’ll let you know about after getting that not-so-stable cupcake foundation set.
I’m not salty that someone hasn’t professed their crush on me.
But I am currently matching my red beret with my red lipstick because ~studying abroad in Europe~, and I’m just,,,disappointed.
In case you didn’t see the newest development in “Wesleyan attempts to make another Facebook page outside of Soggy We$ Memes,” someone decided to create a Wesleyan Crushes Facebook group. Now, because I’m hopeful that one day Wesleyan will transform into a campus with some actual romance (and maybe also because I just made a playlist called “when in the mood for monogamy”), I’m willing to find my Wesleyan husband™ not via a Pi Cafe Romance™, but through a community with Roth’s face as the profile pic.
I’ve been single for way too long.
Since I’m six hours ahead of ya’ll, I was informed of this new matchmaking/hookup-making/maybe even wholesome content-making platform at around 5 AM. And I’m not sure how I coherently sent this message to the editors’ chat, but this happened:
Now, I’ve had my hand in Internet Dating Culture™ for the purposes of making a fool of myself on Wesleying. This time, I’ve taken it upon myself to make sure the Wesleying Editors are painted in the best light so that, dear Wesleyan community, we can receive validation via this platform.
We have entered––and are surviving––finals hell. While I am proud enough to say that I have not (!!) pulled any all-nighters to finish up assignments and study for exams, I am still spending lots of time on assignments over the last week.
Why you may ask?
I am studying abroad in Denmark this semester! My program DIS has a…slightly strange…calendar system in which #finalsszn starts after over a month of two weeks of classes, then a ~travel week~, then two weeks of classes, then a ~travel week~, then two weeks of classes, then ~Thanksgiving break~, then two weeks of classes, and off I come back to ‘Merica. Needless to say, I have been running around like a chicken with its head cut off, gathering my papers, group projects, and coffee to make it all happen.
A budgeting note: Cafe Paludan (the place with the books and the coffee) offers a large coffee for 10 DKK ($1.52) from 9:00-10:30 in the morning. I am currently here in a little nook I have claimed for myself (gotta be a colonist somehow) writing this blog post as I procrastinate my Danish essay. You can say I’m being productively unproductive.
I’ve been gathering my thoughts about a few things: DIS, Denmark, my physical body being abroad, my mind being abroad, homesickness, and existential crises re: identity. It’s been a truly exhausting few months, and although I was preparing myself for some of this busyness, I did not anticipate that I would have to carve out time on my commute to and from central Copenhagen to stare out the train window, Türk Sanat muzi?i blasting through my earphones, pondering my existence, train officer nudging me to check my train card.
You’ve spent the last month with us reading about what to pack, what to think about when choosing classes, and of course, following the journey of the interesting ways Wesleyan operates. I remember when I was a pre-frosh, stalking every Wesleying article I could get my mouse on, and trying to piece together what my first semester would look like. I was right on a few things, but I was definitely unprepared with a few, err, a lot of this.
Sdz started a post last year called “Things I Wish I Knew as a First Year,” which was featured after Unofficial Orientation, and we’ve decided to fully integrate it into the series. We’ve been in your shoes, and want to help you by telling you our very, very wise wisdom that we can embark on you.
The advice in this column was anonymously sent into Wesleying’s TipBox by many wonderful members of Wesleyan’s community. Take a deep breath, get off of Instagram, and take a minute to read it.