Strawberry Fields Forever

Strawberry Fields, Central Park | Shades of Sarah
Strawberry Fields, Central Park | Shades of Sarah
Strawberry Fields, Central Park | Shades of Sarah
Strawberry Fields, Central Park | Shades of Sarah
Strawberry Fields, Central Park | Shades of Sarah
Strawberry Fields, Central Park | Shades of Sarah
Strawberry Fields, Central Park | Shades of Sarah

I circled December 8, 2010 on my calendar back this summer. The day marked the 30th anniversary of the death of Beatles’ great John Lennon, and I was going to make sure to visit the Strawberry Fields Memorial in Central Park that day. Thirty years ago, my dad went to the park with my grandfather, along with countless others, to honor. There was a nice symmetry to that, knowing I would be there this year.

That Wednesday, a day most Fordham students don’t have classes, my friend and I headed to Central Park West. We’re both huge Beatles fans, and I was really excited to see the memorial for the first time. There must have been hundreds of people surrounding the “Imagine” mosaic, including plenty of journalists. After patiently waiting, we finally got close enough to see it. It was around noon, and mementos already covered the memorial: flowers, candles, apples, bracelets, a shirt, and yes, a Yankees cap. It showed how much the city embraced John Lennon: this Englishman became a New Yorker.

There were people from all walks of life at the park. The crowd was melancholy, but there was also something celebratory about the day. Lennon would have turned 70 this year, and the older people were happy to reminisce about the time when the Beatles ruled the world. Young children were there with parents and grandparents. There were guitar players in the crowd too, and people sang along with some popular songs. Not only did we not do the songs justice, but we weren’t even able to agree on songs — groups of people would start singing “Imagine” and then another group would start “Come Together.” We did sing “Happy Christmas,” which was very fitting. It was imperfectly perfect.

~ Sarah

Taking It Down A Notch

Photo Credit

It seems that this October, I’ve been spending as much time in D.C. than I have in Manhattan. There was a special occasion for my second trip to the capital of course: Jon Stewart’s Rally to Restore Sanity And/Or Fear. For some crazy reason, I don’t really follow Stewart’s exploits on “The Daily Show”, but being the young liberal I am, I eventually heard about the rally he proposed: “A Million Moderate March”.

I wasn’t planning on attending until I read that the newspaper The Huffington Post chartered buses to take eager New Yorkers to D.C. My friends Lindsey, Claudine, and I made our free reservations, and early on the morning of 30th, we piled into a cab bound for Citi Field. By the time we got there, just after 5, it was a chilly madhouse. No one had any idea what was going on, until there was a sudden rush to get in line for the security checkpoint. By some stroke of luck, we managed to get on the second Huff Post Bus to leave Queens, and we were on our way to Washington.

We got to RFK Stadium ahead of schedule, just before 11. That  gave us just over an hour to make it to the National Mall before The Roots and John Legend were set to perform. Not only did we manage to get to the Mall early, but we got decent spots among the crowd. And by “decent”, I mean we were within set of the third set of television projections. We didn’t realize until our trip back, but we were really fortunate to make it to the rally on time. Some buses from the HuffPost didn’t get in until one o’clock, well into the rally.

A lot of people have asked me what the rally was all about. It’s pretty hard to explain. For the most part, the rally consisted of musical performances and comedic sketches. There was, however, serious social commentary going on. I’ll admit, there was a liberal bias to most of the messages, but the overall point was that people need to be rational, politicians need to compromise, and we need to accept that we’ll always have differences, but that doesn’t make the other side evil or anything. Honestly, it was a great message that I think this country needed to hear. It was an unforgettable experience being in D.C. and being among hundreds of thousands with high hopes for the U.S. There were an estimated 215,000 people in attendance!!

If there’s one thing you’re going to take away from this post, it should be this, Jon Stewart’s message:

Here are some of the pictures I took during the rally:

Claudine, Lindsey, and me.
The Roots
John Legend
Picture of a picture: the crowd
Jon Stewart
Yusuf Islam (previously known as Cat Stevens)
O'Jays singing "Love Train"
Sheryl Crow

My friends and I were all so glad we had a chance to attend the rally. It was an incredible experience, and hard to put into words. And it’s one more thing to check off my college bucket list: attend a protest. Did any of you attend? One of my friends from high school flew up to Connecticut and drove done from there! He wrote a great play-by-play on the rally here. Are you guys fans of “The Daily Show”? And did you agree with Stewart’s message?

~ Sarah

*throwback post 🙂

FU Dead Week

I hate falling behind on my blogging, and I usually like to give warnings when I’m going on a hiatus. I blame the one I’m on now on finals week: thank you, Fordham University. Still, I think that’s a pretty legit excuse, don’t you? And it’s gotten to the point that I needed my friend to change my Facebook and Twitter passwords (thanks, Claire!). If that’s not rock bottom studying-wise, I don’t know what is.

… Then again, my friends Alyssa and Katie study like this:

That’s right, strike a pose! Love you guys.

I’m pretty sure most college kids are on break right now, but Fordham is lame- I don’t fly back to Florida until Tuesday night, after I take two more finals that day. And for those of you still suffering with me, happy studying!

~ Sarah

P.S. This is my 100th blog post! And of course, I write about being a lazy bum with no self-control. Stay classy, Fordham.