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February 22 : This is Washington’s Birthday …

… back in the ’40s, candy stores sold cardboard hatchets with red ax heads and blue handles filled with red hard candy cherries.  Are we losing the man to ‘President’s Day’? Does it matter?

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10 Questions for an Alumnus in Finance Series

By way of introduction, my name is Charlotte Scott and I am currently a junior Economics major at Williams College. I will be helping to conduct a series called “10 Questions for an Alumnus in Finance,” where we will reach out to Williams graduates who are or have worked in finance to learn more about their experience in the industry. By doing so, we hope to gain an insight into how each alumus’ career experience pertains to their time at Williams College, and what advice they would give to present-day students to optimize their time at the Williams.

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A Sunday Break : Portraits, Presidents, and First Ladies …

The portraits of President Obama and the First Lady have been unveiled at the Smithsonian National Gallery this week. I know this news is well-known and may produce varied reaction. But I have thoughts on the question of presidential portraits. 

I take President James A Garfield Class of 1856 as a starting point:

Screen Shot 2018-02-17 at 12.12.56 PM This is the official White House portrait done by a popular artist of the day. Garfield’s considerable talents may or may not be visible in this conservative style. Remember, he did not want to run for president and was surprised at the convention when in a speech he was making in support of another candidate, he asked an impassioned question: “What do we want?” and the answer was “Garfield”

 

 

 

 

And now ‘Compare and Contrast. as the writing on the board went in days of yore.

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President Roosevelt is by John Singer Sargent, portrayer of society in the Gilded Age. President Obama’s portrait is by Kihinde Wiley. Much has been said about the changes in society and attitudes towards portraying our presidents. You can make your own compare and contrast.

I add as a thought that President Teddy Roosevelt did not like the portrait painted by the French very successful painter of the rich and/or famous Theobold Cartran. This official portrait was a gift from the French Ambassador. Roosevelt burned it.

But Chartran had far better luck with his portrait of First Lady Edith Roosevelt. Here is another ‘compare and contrast’ …two First Ladies: Edith Roosevelt and Michelle Obama. First Lady Obama’s portrait by Amy Sherald.

 

Screen Shot 2018-02-17 at 12.25.29 PM   Obamas-Portrait-front

 The two portraits vary in style, yet each capture the grace, ease, and intelligence of these two women.The use of the dresses is so important to both portraits! Mrs Roosevelt is credited with spurring on the establishment of the National Gallery where these are on display.

What are presidential portraits supposed to do? In these new times, a move toward capturing the energy of the sitter may become more important than a more conventional and expected view. Who was the President? What do we see? Why do we see it?

Which of course leads me to this thought … how will an artist choose to capture the energy of the 45th president and his First Lady?

 

Now that most of Sunday has past, even here in Pacific Time, it is time to turn in your blue book (s).

In order to check yourselves against others views, please go to Comments Two and Four for three interesting reviews, one by a constant contributor.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Eph Construction Boom, since 1990.

The friendly folks over at “Eph Construction Boom” have been tracking the progress on facebook.

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With a pink hotel, a boutique, and a swinging hot spot…

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“Guns”: the four-letter word that must not be spoken …

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Redux of 6 November, 2017 

 

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RE: “Husband” Post Above …

VALENTINE%206… Sophie Johnson in The New Yorker Daily Shouts, 14 February 2018

https://www.newyorker.com/humor/daily-shouts/culturally-relevant-valentines

 

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A Saint with a Lesson …

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all we need is love… 

Typed on a 1969 Olivetti Valentine portable designed by Ettore Sottsass, the leader of the Memphis design group in Milan.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ettore_Sottsass

P1040390    P1040389

 

 

 

 

 

 

The back of the typewriter  becomes the top of the cover complete with handle. With the machine out, the case becomes a waste basket.

The Pelikan pen holder with an M200 in its’ beak is to remind me of my love for fountain pens. You need a lot of love to go around today!

 

 

 

 

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A Sunday Break: Coats, Hats, and The Queen…

Screen Shot 2018-02-09 at 12.20.56 PMThe Queen paying tribute to Williams or Churchill’s mother. 

Well, yes. I am an Anglophile, now that you ask.

For me this has meant a lot of tweed. But for the Queen, it means selecting from a seemingly limitless array of colour (the showy Anglophile’s preferred spelling) and varied styles reflecting the times in her choice of coats.

https://www.vanityfair.com/style/photos/2017/07/queen-elizabeth-rainbow-coats

…and the hats. Unlike Boston women who “have our hats”, the Queen manages  to wear a brimmed or toque number to suit her assemblage.  And eye-catching creations they are.

https://www.vanityfair.com/style/photos/2012/05/diamond-jubilee-hats-queen-elizabeth

What with Phil’s grim prediction of more gray and the unbelievable Grimm tales from the WH, I add this colour blotch to the blog.

 

 

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‘Twitter’ and Leadership: a topic for discussion?

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A Sunday Break: Clash of the Fields!

As we gather to watch the Super Bowl at the new US Bank Stadium in Minneapolis, consider this:

The Super Bowl has never been played at Farley-Lamb Field.

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Why is this!  

Other schools’ fields have been honored to hold this event with its’ influx of tourist dollars and publicity. Yet the only football game aired from Weston was the Williams-Amherst game in 2007 when ESPN featured the game with the lede : The Biggest Little Game in America.  And the score was W 20/A zip.

Is this because our leftist faculty and administration are destroying the proud record of elitist right-wing helmet heads who have made Williams teams a tradition since 1884? Shame, I say!

Here is a reference to other stadii with whom we compete for you to peruse and thus formulate your thoughts for action and/or deconstruction:

https://www.dezeen.com/2018/02/01/super-bowl-stadiums-past-present-future-american-football-nfl-championship-venues/?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Daily%20Dezeen%20Digest&utm_content=Daily%20Dezeen%20Digest+CID_7c6e605b889c70dc30c2d6918b63b6a7&utm_source=Dezeen%20Mail&utm_term=Hard%20Rock%20Stadium%20by%20Populous%20Miami%20Florida

Your comments most welcome!

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2/2 2/2 2/2 2/2 2/2 …

Watch out for that first step, it’s a doozie!

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Social Media Policy – Proper or Overreach?

http://reason.com/blog/2018/01/16/williams-college-students-should-report

Should students have the right to police each others’ social media posts?

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It is 9pm ET ! If you have the desire to watch something else …

The above suggestion for those who may be feeling some need for elevation …

James MacGregor Burns and PoliSci 1-2 in Griffin Hall were my first course, first day at Williams in 1952.

https://www.williams.edu/feature-stories/burns-and-fdr-a-conversation/

Excerpts from SOTU:

https://www.politico.com/story/2018/01/30/trump-state-of-the-union-2018-speech-quotes-379314

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The Greatest Show on Earth!

the-ringling-bros-circus-is-ending-its-iconic-elephant-acts

Can you believe that back in 2011 The Adams Memorial Theater would be the stage for a circus?

https://events.williams.edu/event/theatre_228

Elephants are no longer a part of the Barnum and Bailey Circus.

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A Sunday Break: Winter Study on Typewriters …

… a Williams Record feature:

Paresky Extravaganza Clacks out Personal Poems for Students

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It is two minutes to twelve and a Chapin Library holding may be coming under fire soon …

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Up-dating my post of December 8, 2017:

The “White House Lawyers Up” post of last spring was thought to be ‘jumping over the shark’.   I see another moment approaching.    Please, Librarian Hammond,  protect the Chapin Collection’s Mason draft from the conflagration. It may be needed for reference.

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Be Sure to Play Fantasy Admissions!

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Join DDF, abl, hmm, and so many others in building your dream team to make Williams

 

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It’s fun! It’s a battle of statistics, interpretations, and predicting the results!

Compare Williams with its peers and figure out how to beat those Ivied bastards and the other green quad-oriented SLAs!

And while you are at it, have the thrill of arguing points endlessly with fellow verbose Fantasyers.

Results of your dream team may be compared with the actual results for Williams and those other guys!

 

 

JUST TWO MORE DAYS TO BE A CONTENDER!

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Williamstown, Marcel Breuer, Preston Robinson, and the Atomic Bomb

Here is a combination of arcana that can’t be beat.

Dwell magazine  put up this post of 10 Marcel Breuer buildings with the lede “The Bauhaus designer’s modern vision helped post-war American building see the future.”

https://www.dwell.com/article/design-icon-10-buildings-by-marcel-breuer956d0193

In 1947 Preston Robinson commissioned Breuer to design a residence in Williamstown.

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Photo  Robert Demora

And who was Preston Robinson you may well ask. He was a senior engineer at Sprague Electric decades before it became Mass MOCA. The house, no longer owned by the Robinson family, is located on 43 acres at 236 Bulkley Street.

Robinson played a key role in the development of the atomic bomb.

 Screen Shot 2018-01-20 at 11.42.03 AMNYT obit  May 23, 1973

Who knew!

 

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“I love you, but sooner or later, you’re going to have to face the fact you’re a goddamn moron.”

… The Dude, The Big Labowski

A Williamstown Clock:

DSC00485Posted as a public service

Not hard to figure out who is responsible. Trump on Fox News :

http://www.cnn.com/videos/politics/2018/01/19/trump-government-shutdown-blame-sot-2013-fox-lead.cnn

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31* College Tuition Education Initiative: Williams in Information Action!

The NYT’s David Leonhardt writes on misconceptions about the flu and college tuition initiative to help clear up misconceptions about college costs:

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https://www.nytimes.com/2018/01/17/opinion/flu-shot-college-costs.html?rref=collection%2Fsectioncollection%2Fopinion-columnists&_r=0

MyinTuition, a revolutionary online tool, ensures that students and their families have quick and easy access to the information they need to make decisions about college affordability.  MyinTuition shows the projected cost of college once financial aid is factored in, helping students understand and plan for what college will actually cost.

https://myintuition.org/

Give it a trial run. The information for input may yield some clue to the questions of admission policies so hotly debated in these columns. In English and Spanish.

 

* The original group of 16 colleges has now expanded to 31, The calculator and impetus for the development of this initiative come from Wellesley College.

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Coca-Cola – Typography and Water Wars: a Saturday Break …

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I thought the color Coca-Cola (Red RGB #E41E2B) might catch attention among the gray columns.

Of interest to me, my work included branding, was the introduction of a bespoke typeface for that giant venerable international brand Coca-Cola— its very first in their 132 years. 

https://www.dezeen.com/2018/01/12/neville-brody-designs-coca-colas-first-ever-typeface-tccc-unity-graphics/?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Daily%20Dezeen%20Digest&utm_content=Daily%20Dezeen%20Digest+CID_a883105a6e82fc754c325037b7b3cd41&utm_source=Dezeen%20Mail&utm_term=Neville%20Brody%20designs%20Coca-Colas%20first%20ever%20own-brand%20typeface

Typefaces, and there are thousands, are designed for aesthetics and communication. For a look at this interesting field, the P22 site:

https://p22.com/

Now, for those inspecting for the Williams link, here ya go …

Michael Blanding ’95 *, author of The Coke Machine: The Dirty Truth Behind the World’s Favorite Soft Drink, in a Log Lunch on campus, discussed three case studies in which Coca-Cola factories were accused of taking water away from local community sources and infecting their leftover reserves with illegal levels of pesticides and metals.

https://ces.williams.edu/log/michael-blanding-talks-water-wars-and-coca-cola/

*  This is not Mr Blanding’s first appearance in Ephblog. See the link below to the 2004 story of his engagement. Catch up with the last 14 years of the Blandings’ with your password for the Alumni Directory. So far he has not built his Dream House.

http://ephblog.com/2004/07/03/blanding-95-to-wed/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mr._Blandings_Builds_His_Dream_House

And from my own local experience within Hood River County, Oregon: the defeat of a plan to sell water rights to Nestle for yet another of their bottled water plants capitalizing on the names of local water sources. In our case it was the springs from Mt Hood and the river town of Cascade Locks. Nestle, whose own home is on Lake Geneva, CH, keeps fighting . And they recently purchased San Pelegrino and Evian. Water, I don’t need to say but will, is the oil of the XXIst century.

 

 

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James Van Der Zee photograph, ‘Nude, Harlem’ starts salon discussion January 11th …

8083cfe4cf33441e64e1c0083e066078--painted-fireplaces-white-photographyJames Van Der Zee (American, 1886–1983), Nude, Harlem, negative 1923, printed 1974. Gelatin sepia-toned print, 9 1/2 x 7 1/2 in. Museum purchase, Otis Family Acquisition Trust, M.2017.9.6

… in the Reading Room of the WCMA at 5:30 pm. The focus is ‘In Context’.

Two further salons will be held at WCMA on this photograph, ‘In Process’ on January 25th, and ‘In Theory’ on February 8th.

James Van Der Zee is one of the artists closely associated with the Harlem Renaissance of the 1920s-1930s.

The Otis Family Acquisition Fund has made this acquisition possible as a part of the purchase of  James Van Der Zee: A portfolio of 18 Photographs presented with new prints in 1974 as a part of the renewed interest in the photographer as a part of the Civil Rights Movement and the Black Arts Movement.

https://wcma.williams.edu/news-item/gift-from-the-otis-family/

 

See the 18 photographs!

 

Read more

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I can’t let this one go by …

Il DunceActually, throughout my life, my two greatest assets have been mental stability and being, like, really smart,” he added. He said he was a “VERY successful businessman” and television star who won the presidency on his first try. “I think that would qualify as not smart, but genius….and a very stable genius at that!”

         NYT Jan 6, 2018

A very timely article on the fascist state development appears in this article at Williams.edu:

https://sites.williams.edu/cthorne/articles/fulfilling-the-fascist-lie/

 

 

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Be sure to express your thoughts on DDF post (above)

As a side-bar this, separate but related story:

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Another look at President Falk as the torch is passed …

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As a digression from the in-progress 15 part series on President Falk appearing in these pages, here is a review of his tenure as appearing in The Williams Magazine, Fall 2017.

 

 

 

 

 

Illustration by James Steinberg

It is interesting to note the approach taken by the editors:

Adam Falk will leave Williams in December to become president of the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. When we sat down with him to plan the magazine’s coverage of his tenure, he made an important observation: “This story is about Williams’ ideals, principles and priorities; it shouldn’t be about me.” We took what he said to heart and realized the best way to tell the story of his presidency at Williams is to tell the story of Williams during his presidency. So we asked the people responsible for some of the most important changes during Falk’s time to share their thoughts. Their essays follow.

https://magazine.williams.edu/2017/fall/feature/moving-forward-together/

 

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In the spirit : “Toying with The Mountains” *

This just in from Adam Falk:

Williams alumni, parents, students, faculty, staff,

We asked a small group to play you a special song for the season, and they took us at our word. I hope you enjoy the results.

Best wishes for a joyous season and a happy start to the new year.

Adam Falk

*  This post, my 700th, makes me a very, very distant second place to Dave. My first post was 23 December, 2007.

 

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2018 … The Year of Ultra Purple! And Williams’ 225th Anniversary!

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Can it be mere coincidence that Pantone* has introduced Ultra-Violet Pantone 18-3838 TCX as the color of the year for 2018? I think not!

Pantone describes the color as  “a dramatically provocative and thoughtful purple shade”.

* Pantone Inc. is an American corporation headquartered in Carlstadt, New Jersey. The company is best known for its Pantone Matching System, a proprietary color standard system used in a variety of industries, … Wikipedia

From De Zeen magazine :

https://www.dezeen.com/2017/12/07/ultra-violet-pantone-colour-of-the-year-2018-design-trends/?utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=Daily%20Dezeen%20Digest&utm_content=Daily%20Dezeen%20Digest+CID_1b96abd0ee2f19905174dbf551e201fe&utm_source=Dezeen%20Mail&utm_term=More

Even more on the lineage and complexity of the color purple from the NYT:

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/12/09/style/purple-pantone-color-year.html?module=WatchingPortal&region=c-column-middle-span-region&pgType=Homepage&action=click&mediaId=thumb_square&state=standard&contentPlacement=7&version=internal&contentCollection=www.nytimes.com&contentId=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.nytimes.com%2F2017%2F12%2F09%2Fstyle%2Fpurple-pantone-color-year.html&eventName=Watching-article-click

What could have been on Winston Churchill’s mother’s mind …   ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ **

 

** “beats me” courtesy of The New York Times.

ADDED TODAY FOR GENERAL INTEREST AND PER THE FIRST COMMENT BELOW

 

Screen Shot 2017-12-10 at 4.57.10 PMThe Ephblog masthead color does not match the printing specs as issued by the college. 267 C is the new color of the year (or close enough for jazz).

 https://communications.williams.edu/files/williams_graphic_standards.pdf

 

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Steve Case ’80 and ‘Rise of the Rest’ fund …

merlin_128930624_db224d97-771d-4568-8abf-c8fd554028d5-master768Credit  Maddie McGarvey for The New York Times

… Steve Case cut his wisdom teeth at P&G, Cincinnati and Pizza Hut, Wichita. In the picture above, he is with J. D. Vance , the author of  Hillbilly Elegy. Vance, born in Kentucky, grew up in Middletown*, Ohio.

The AOL co-founder Steve Case, front, and the author J.D. Vance quietly recruited some of the country’s wealthiest people to invest in their Rise of the Rest fund, which will seed investments in underserved cities and encourage their contributors to partner with benefiting businesses. The New York Times, December 5, 2017

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/12/04/business/dealbook/midwest-start-ups.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=second-column-region&region=top-news&WT.nav=top-news&_r=0

* Old-time students of Prof Fred Schuman will have read Middletown A Study in Modern American Culture by husband and wife sociologists Robert Staughton Lynd and Helen Merrell Lynd.  Published in 1925, Middletown is a study of every-day life and values in Muncie, IN.  The book became a best-seller and a basic read in sociology classes.

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Recent Ephblog themes show up in DC: Native Americans, U.S. Marines, service to our country, and a painting …

ct-trump-pocahontas-code-talkers-20171127

… this most recent contribution was made under the presidential painting of Andrew Jackson, who ordered The Trail of Tears.

https://www.politico.com/story/2017/11/27/trump-navajo-code-talkers-pocahontas-260989

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