In the wee hours of the morning, while the sun shone brightly on the other half of the world, a couple thousand Long Islanders sat in their cars in silent anticipation. The cars were neatly packed into a dark parking lot, every here and there one illuminated by the eerie glow of a lamppost. The fenders sat a little lower than usual in these first moments of the day after Thanksgiving, as most bellies were still stuffed to unusual dimensions with turkey and pumpkin pie. Floor mats were littered with the pages of a Wal-Mart flyer that had long been committed to the memory of every shopper. Visions of $69 digital cameras and $28 vacuums danced in their heads.
With five school records, an Ivy title, a runner-up finish at the National championship and an individual Regional qualifier for the first time in a decade, the 2008 season for the gymnastics team was one of unprecedented success.
“That organic eggplant hummus sandwich may be good for you, but it’s bad for our books” — warns a small sign sitting on the desk clusters in Mann library. My “ooh, yum” reaction might not be echoed by the person next to me, but neither of us find the sandwich to be anything out of the ordinary.
After all, this is a university well known for the diversity of foods available in our various dining locations. But beyond this cold and cloudy sphere we call the Cornell bubble, that sandwich order might elicit a very different response.
I used to spend my days in a different little upstate New York town, where the majority of people would read that sign and think, “a what sandwich?”
The rowing teams placed a cherry on top of a good fall season at the Syracuse Invitational regatta this weekend with multiple individual victories and a first or second place finish in every event the Red was entered in. [img_assist|nid=33267|title=Making ripples|desc=The men’s and women’s crew teams performed well this weekend, placing among the top-5 in almost every event they were entered in at the Syracuse Invitational regatta.|link=node|align=left|width=|height=0]
Wearing a blue sweatshirt, you trudge your way up to campus for a prelim, stopping at CTB for a medium coffee. You add an inch of skim milk and a packet of natural sugar —nah, make that two. You finish the trek up to the test you’re going to bomb, give it your best not-good-enough shot and feel inadequate all the way back home.
A week later, you’re nervously peeking through two fingers at the tiny numbers scribbled on the front page and it hits you: shock, delight and triple check that you are in fact holding your exam. An A!
No team ever enters a competition without the intention of winning. Often, however, a non-victory can provide a lot more information about the team’s standing and help to narrow the focus of upcoming training. This weekend was an informative one for all of the Cornell rowing teams, as the men’s varsity heavyweight eight took fourth, the men’s lightweight eight fifth, and the women’s eight 17th at the Princeton Chase regatta. [img_assist|nid=33071|title=Greater than the sum of the parts|desc=The men’s and women’s rowing teams didn’t win the Princeton Chase regatta this weekend, but learned that it has the strenghth, but must focus on rowing together to get better.|link=node|align=left|width=|height=0]
No team ever enters a competition without the intention of winning. Often, however, a non-victory can provide a lot more information about the team’s standing and help to narrow the focus of upcoming training. This weekend was an informative one for all of the Cornell rowing teams, as the men’s varsity heavyweight eight took fourth, the men’s lightweight eight fifth, and the women’s eight 17th at the Princeton Chase regatta.
The heavyweight eight’s fourth-place finish was out of a forty-team field and only 10 seconds behind winner Yale.
The rowing teams are preparing for a calmer weekend than last weekend as they head to New Jersey for Sunday’s Princeton Chase regatta. Coming away from the hectic Head of the Charles with mixed results, the teams hope for an improvement in both the weather and the performances.
For the heavyweight men, fellow Ivy League crews will provide some of the toughest competition. The Red finished only one second ahead of Yale and 10 seconds ahead of Princeton this past weekend.
“At the Charles we came in first out of the boats that we are racing [this] weekend,” said senior coxswain Jimmy Germano. “We are hoping to build off the Charles and win the Chase, which is something we haven’t done in a long time.”
Usually, team traditions are carried out because they are simply that: traditions. Sometimes a modern amendment to the tradition may be long overdue, and other times it represents something better than simply an inherited occurrence. For the Cornell rowing program, the annual Schwartz Cup is one of those golden rituals that make the fall crew season shine.
Every autumn, Cornell rowing enthusiasts Dick and Jean Schwartz fund a crew race on the Cayuga Inlet. But unlike typical regattas, only Cornell crews compete. And unlike typical competitions, the rowers must perform both on and off the water, by class and against alumni. The day begins at the Collyer Boathouse with a skit performance and finishes with a 5,000 meter head race out onto Cayuga Lake.
The Cornell rowing program left Boston with mixed feelings after this weekend’s annual Head of the Charles Regatta. Known for its hectic crowds and challenging course, windy weather added to the other difficulties faced by the crews. On the men’s side, the varsity heavyweight eight placed tenth in a competitive field with a time of 14:58 for the 5000 meter course, just twenty seconds behind first place Washington and ahead of fellow Ivy League foes Yale, Harvard, Penn, Columbia, and Princeton.