Alexandra Larkin '18

It’s spring, readers! Finally, finally spring. The snow’s melting and everything is completely flooded, but I couldn’t be happier. Warm weather is my favorite thing ever.

Midterms just ended- thank god- and I’m starting new units in everything. Tomorrow in class I’ll be getting assigned new essays and such. Yayyyyyy. I’m just excited for all the Easter food that HC will inevitably have. Like, you just know that we’ll be having awesome frosted sugar cookies. It’s a staple, am I right?

So, you all know that I applied to the Summer Mellon research program. Unfortunately, I was not accepted; I didn’t have enough background in the topic, I was told, but I was encouraged to apply next year once I’ve taken more classes. While I’m honestly a little skeptical as to why they would let freshman apply if they rejected all of us because we haven’t taken enough classes, I’ll probably apply again next year and hope that two more semesters is what they’re looking for. It’s such a good opportunity to do research, and I hope that next year has a happier ending.

I’ve also started writing for the school newspaper! You can check out our website, which can be found through HC’s website, and see if my articles have been posted yet. I’ve been writing for the satire section, the Shillelagh, so it’ll be a fun time, I promise.

I’m sure you’ve all heard the famous line from George R. R. Martin’s series A Song of Ice and Fire that his favorite ruling family, the Starks, trot out with extreme frequency, that winter is coming; but thank god, it’s almost over. That bodes well for my work load– midterms are almost over, with two classes down and two to go, and all my summer job and internship applications in. Next Tuesday is not only my Environmental Science midterm but also my birthday; and what could be a better birthday present than the end of midterms and a week-long break coming three days after?

Honestly, I’m excited to go home. But not for the reasons that you would think– no, I’m not sick of school and desperately want someone to cook for me (although a plate of cookies would be nice). I’m excited to move ahead with my plans for the summer, because as soon as I get back from break I hear about my summer plans. Time seems to be dragging right now, ever since I got the majority of my work out of the way, and I’m not a patient person. With the study tips and time management stuff that I’ve learned from my professors, my studying has gone by so much more quickly. Also, the midterm for my Poetry and Poetics class is to write a Shakespearean sonnet in iambic pentameter, and for me that’s more interesting than every single one of Theon’s chapters in literally ever GRRM book. When I finish writing that, I’ll post it on here so you all can see just how flowery I can get with 10 syllables per line.

Whaaaaaat? You’re probably thinking. February sucks. It’s cold, wet, and winter’s been dragging on so long that I’m starting to forget what summer is like. 

You have a point. We have like five feet of snow here and I’ve just gotten used to the fact that I will always have rock salt in my shoes. It’s constantly blowing 20 knots, it gets dark out at 5, but in a remarkable turn of events, I’m adapting. I used to be the coldest person ever, but now I’ve gotten to the stage where I just cannot be bothered anymore. Aka no gloves, no hat, no ski jacket. It’s a miracle I still have all my fingers. But really, why is February so great?

It’s because school is finally back in swing. I missed HC so much over winter break– all my friends, actually having stuff to do, my dorm room, my classes and professors. Now that I’m back into things, it’s a little hectic; I have a due date every day this week, and that big Mellon application is due this Friday- yikes!! I’m a little nervous. But my NART professor from last semester– Professor Robert Green– is my mentor and he’s fantastic. He’s spent so much time helping me go over my application and has completely supported me. I’m so grateful he’s my mentor.

After I get through mid next week, I’m pretty clear before March break. I do have an Environmental Science test on my birthday, which I’m not 100% psyched about, but maybe I’ll get extra credit. That’d be amazing. But after break? It’s spring! And that means warm weather!

Here’s hoping spring comes early!


My dear readers,

Now that I’m back at school and have been to all my classes (and needed to find a reason to put off studying for my Latin quiz tomorrow), I thought this was a good time to catch up. So, you ask, what’s new?

Well, I’ve got two new classes– Poetry and Environmental Science– both of which seem to be pretty good so far, even though I won’t actually get to write any poetry in poetry, which is so embarrassingly sad to little English-major me. I’m applying for the Mellon Summer Research Program, which supports humanities research projects, and my proposal goes something along the lines of looking at the writing styles and political agendas of female Native American writers in the 20th century and how their native faith has affected those things, but I won’t bore you with too many details.

But the most important thing is that I’ve been doing some thinking this semester and over break, and I’m really pretty certain that I want to be a teacher. I think I’d be good at it, and I really want to give kids the insight into literature that can spark the same kind of love for it that I have. So basically what this means is that I’m going to apply to TEP, HC’s teaching program– so when I graduate, I’ll be certified to teach in MA. I have to take like 8 teaching classes and do a semester of student teaching at the end of it.

It’s weird, I feel like I’m so young and should have no idea what I want to do; like, isn’t that why we aren’t allowed to declare till the end of freshman year? What if I don’t know myself well enough to make these decisions? But another part of me knows what is right for me, and is going to see it through.

Darling readers, I hope you’ll see through whatever your futures are, just as I will.

Hey readers,

I recently realized that all your comments have been going straight to spam. So so sorry about that– I’ll figure out how to fix that as soon as I’m done with this English essay. And I’ll respond to them right away.



Dear readers, I hope you survived Thanksgiving with minimal pounds added on and no existential crisis caused by literally every single one of your relatives asking what you wanted to do with your life. (Hint: that’s what happened to me).

I’m very sorry to tell you that this isn’t over. You still have to get through this whole winter holiday season. It’s okay, don’t worry; I can help. Promise.

(Disclaimer: Do not hold me accountable for any traumatic instances, groundings, or privilege revocations due to following my advice. After all, I did try and pass off the ability to climb stairs at the pace of an Olympic athlete, because of the inordinate amount of stairs here at HC, as a valuable job skill to my aunt. It did not go over well.) 

Okay, here’s what you’ve got to do if you’re still in high school; first, tell everyone you’re coming to Holy Cross, because a) we’re awesome and b) that’ll get everyone off your back. If you’re already here and everyone’s telling you that your major (cough, English, cough) is never ever going to get you a job, just tell them about the awesome alumni network we have.

For example, I’m going to shadow an Associate Director of Marketing at The Hollywood Reporter– a huge online media mecca that deals with everything from the recent Sony leak to the Star Wars teaser clip. Don’t lie, you know you’ve watched it like four times in a row. Anyway, I’m going into NYC to their office over break in January, and I’m really looking forward to it. Publishing is something I’ve seriously thought about doing- and yes, I know I’m a freshman, thanks for asking- and goodness it’s a hard business to get into if you don’t have connections. Thankfully, I’ve got HC on my side.

So remember, just when you want to strangle someone with the Christmas tree lights, that every single kid is going through the exact same one. But you can’t boast about your muscular calves like I can.

(Seriously, it’s a marketable skill! I swear!)


Oh, wait, it’s because we chose to come to the Northeast. Why can’t we relocate to the Bahamas again? Someone needs to start working on a teleporter. (Cough cough, I’m looking at you, dear reader.)

So the weather here is rainy and cold, and while I’m normally a fan of both rainy and cold weather, I like bright, clear cold days in November a lot more. I just hope it’s cleared up by Thanksgiving, otherwise my family’s annual cannon-shooting (don’t ask) will be a lot less fun.

In the days since I last posted, not too much has happened– I had a Latin exam (boring!), a 10 page paper to start planning (annoying and boring) and there was carrot cake in Kimball last night (not at all boring). Seriously readers, this carrot cake. It’s AMAZING.

Part of the reason why I’m in such a complain-y mood tonight is because HC’s professors have assigned all the major work due before finals. The home stretch of essays, if you want to go for the sports metaphors. So I have three essays assigned right now, two of which have to be 10 pages each– and yes, I’m sure some of you at home reading this are thinking “Ali that’s like nothing, stop whining!” But I’m lazy. So shush.

In any case, Thanksgiving is right around the corner, and if HC does anything well it’s New England fall food. (Did I ever tell you all about the caramel apples? And pumpkin cupcakes for Halloween?) So I’m looking forward to what Kimball puts out. But obviously it’s not about that, it’s about what you’re thankful for– so remember to tell all those people you love that you’re happy they’re here. Don’t worry, I’ll go whisper sweet nothings to the cupcakes in your stead.

My dear readers, there are very few holidays I like better than Halloween, and I can count them all on one hand. So you can imagine how excited I was this year– first Halloween in college! I’d planned on going to MIT on Friday night and doing one of those clever couples costumes with my boyfriend and then coming back Saturday night and going out with all my friends. It’d work out perfect, because many of my HC friends couldn’t go out Friday night because they had games during the day on Saturday.

Now, I’m sure you’re getting a sense that Murphy’s Law might begin to apply to this story soon. You’d be right.

The SGA- Student Government Association, I think that’s the lengthening of the acronym- runs a big yellow school bus back and forth from Boston to HC. The bus leaves at 7:00 on Saturday night, and there isn’t another one until midnight.

So imagine me getting off of the T at 6:55: it’s pouring rain at Faneuil Hall, where the HC bus picks us up, and I’m rushing towards the bus, and it begins to pull away as I get closer. I break into a sprint, almost bowl over a family of unfortunate tourists, and the bus pulls into traffic and I’m left standing on the street corner. I pull out my phone to call someone, anyone; and it’s 6:58. So this is why my mom insists on getting places 15 minutes early. 

So, folks, the moral of the story is that being in college means looking after yourself, and sometimes that’s hard. But having stand-up friends and a commuter rail train that is way more reliable than a bus is all you need. (The significant other who buys you ice cream to make you feel better is just a bonus).

I hope you all had a lovely weekend, dear readers, and I’ve come bearing gifts.

These gifts are mostly pictures of the Head of Charles Regatta, so I do hope you all like pictures of skylines and athletes. I had a fantastic weekend looking at those things, among others; for example, you would not believe how many people flowed into Boston for this event. There were over 60,000 people who came to Boston just to see this regatta. I even got to watch the US national team race the French and German national teams. They were both pretty close to being trumped by the Harvard varsity team as they went out of my sight, so we can make of that what we will.

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I took these pictures on Saturday; they’re of the starting line beginning at the Boston University boathouse in Cambridge. It was wild, readers. There were people everywhere, and I was completely convinced someone was going to crash. I wasn’t wrong, but I was about where it would happen– no one crashed at the starting line, but a boat of 8 Junior girls did crash into the pillar of Elliot Bridge. One of them was thrown into the water, but thankfully no one was hurt.

Next weekend is Parent’s Weekend here at HC, so while it might not be as glamorous as a world-wide 50th anniversary regatta, it will certainly be just as dramatic; I promised my brother that he could spend a weekend at HC, and I’ve got to convince my parents that he won’t do anything too dumb in those 48 hours. Wish me luck.


As some of you may know, one of the biggest crew regattas in the world, the Head of the Charles, is going to be taking place this weekend in Boston– on, you guessed it, the Charles River. High school students, college athletes, and beyond travel from around the world to come and row. Holy Cross will be racing there– so if you live around Boston, go cheer for ‘Sader Nation.

I’ll be there in the afternoon on Saturday cheering for the HC team and for MIT, because I’m going to watch my boyfriend row and then stay the weekend in Boston, then head back to school on Sunday on the commuter rail. I’ve got to say, the train is so easy, and the old Boston trains remind me of the vintage Metro North trains that used to take me into NYC before they got switched out.

So, dear readers, the real dilemma here lies in how much purple I can wear and get away with as I stand with the MIT parents. Do you think they’ll throw me into the river if I cheer too loudly? It’d be so cold. Brrrrrr.

Here’s hoping that HC Rowing will blow everyone out of the water, and I don’t turn into a human popsicle.


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Alexandra Larkin '18

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