Category Archives: Culture

The Thought of Thursday: Slow Dancing

napolean-dynamite-slow-danceWe at middbeat are very excited about a new weekly series: The Thought of Thursday. Think of it as Yik Yak extended! Certainly, Yik Yak can be a destructive and hurtful tool on campus, but frequently the ‘hottest’ Yaks are simple statements that resemble universal truths about life at Midd. (Think: how difficult the new dining hall tongs are, how competitive teeth brushing can be in communal bathrooms.) The Thought of Thursday will resemble a longer-form Yik Yak– for what you can’t fit 200 characters but doesn’t merit an op-ed. Interested in writing next week’s Thought of Thursday? Email us at [email protected] On to the actual thought…

SLOW DANCING. Remember that? The ULTIMATE tbt. Think back to middle school dances (or google image search them, it’s amazing). Mine took place in our school’s gym, which was usually spruced up with some random decorations like a lone inflatable coconut tree for a luau theme. I can still smell the Axe and BO. Eeek. But odors aside, middle school dances had a certain something that a lot of us yearn for at Midd parties. It’s not a coincidence that most of us love when Shaggy or like Green Day I guess comes on in Atwater. Middle school dances represent pure, sober (I really hope this is true) fun. But intoxication/substance use aside, one huge difference between seventh grade and now is our current lack of slow jams at parties! Imagine this: you’re grinding with someone in Palmer basement, maybe working towards a DFMO, when BOOM– Burn by Usher comes on. You’d be forced to turn around and face the person you’re dancing with. Maybe make some small talk, ask them their major. Maybe it’d just get really awkward, in which case you’d probably be spared another person whose tonsils you’ve seen who wouldn’t say hi in the dining hall. Can you imagine what slow songs would do to improve romantic culture and general communication at Midd? Just a thought…

HornHub: Your Post Hump Day Reminder That Only You Love You Best

Another humpday passed with you listening to horn on your own, devoid of human interaction, feeling empty and lost. But I’m here to remind you that your post-humpday funk needn’t last long.


TODAY- Last Day of : Improv Try-Out Week

Improv Plotter Poster


Both of the college’s improv comedy groups, The Otter Nonsense Players and The Middlebrow Society for Improvisational Theatre, will be holding try-outs this week in hopes of finding Middlebury’s future leaders of sarcastic party conversations.

Otters tryouts will be held TODAY (Tuesday) at 4:30PM and Thursday (2/26) at 5:30PM in the Forest East Lounge.

Middlebrow will be Wednesday (2/25) and Thursday (2/26) at 4:30PM in the Coltrane Lounge (in the Adirondack House, entrance is near Pearsons).

It is important to note that you need only go to one day for either group.  So you could do Otters Tuesday and Brow Thursday, par examplé.

Experience is never expected. Most of the current members had never done improv before either, and had to try-out a few times. No matter if its your first semester, last semester, or that sweet spot in the middle, both groups would love to have you come and play!

Email [email protected] or [email protected] with any questions.

TUESDAY: 10 Truths for Your Self-Acceptance Journey


Rosie Molinary, author of “A Beautiful You: A Daily Guide to Radical Self-Acceptance


This Tuesday at 7pm, an incredible speaker, Rosie Molinary, is coming to Midd to deliver a talk entitled “10 Truths for your Self-Acceptance Journey” in McCullough Social Space. Having demonstrated a significant interest in and concern with body image on Midd’s campus, middbeat is particularly excited about this event, being hosted by Sayre Weir ’15a lovely senior who co-led middbeat’s body image story telling event last spring. Sayre writes in to describe the event: 

Body image is often a taboo subject among friends at Middlebury. Look around you–we are surrounded by beautiful people on this campus. Business Insider ranked Middlebury as 13th on its list of “25 Colleges Where Students are both Hot and Smart” (March 2013). In a high-pressure academic and social environment such as Middlebury, our bodies can easily become just another box to check on our laundry list of areas in which to excel.

Amidst this high-pressure environment, it is important to remember that we are more than our bodies. Our bodies serve as vessels for our personalities and authentic selves, and we must properly nourish ourselves both physically and emotionally.

This week is National Eating Disorder Awareness Week. Come attend Rosie Molinary’s lecture entitled “10 Truths for Your Self-Acceptance Journey” on Tuesday February 24th at 7pm in Wilson Hall/McCullough Social Space to learn more about the path the self-empowerment and self-acceptance. Here’s the full description of her talk:

“Everyday, we perpetuate non-inclusive body and beauty ideals that limit our possibilities. It is time for people of all colors, sizes, and ethnicities to confront the boxes they are placed in by themselves and others and create worldviews that are expansive and empowering. This powerful, interactive workshop reveals ten powerful lessons about journeying to self-acceptance and the tools that can help make anyone more self-accepting. Participants will be inspired to live with purpose, challenged to forego self-defeating tendencies, and encouraged to champion all women.  Frank discussion about idealized beauty standards and our buy-in will help individuals build their media literacy and escape the stranglehold of idealized beauty so that we can concentrate our energies on using our skills and experiences to improve our world.”

Rosie’s talk will be followed by a book signing and the opportunity to purchase Beautiful You: A Daily Guide to Radical Self-Acceptance and/or Hijas Americanas: Beauty Body Image, and Growing up Latina. For more information on Rosie, check out her website:

Date: Tuesday, February 24
Time: 7-8:30pm
Place: McCullough Social Space
Cost: Nada! We hope to see everyone there, guys, girls, all are welcome!

At a Remove: On Joseph Battell’s Centennial and Legacy


If you haven’t had the pleasure of living in Battell, you’ve at least heard of the freshman dorm’s disgustingly incredible reputation. Perhaps you’ve thrived on the now ice field we call Battell beach, and recall warmer days when Battell beach is full of sunbathers and frisbee crushes. But, who IS this “Battell” we’ve named various well-loved Middlebury locations after? Jospeh Battell ‘1860 (lol) was both a Midd alumni and an incredibly generous Midd trustee, and it’s about time you learn about his life and legacy. Thankfully, tomorrow (Monday) creative writing professor David Bain (author of The College on the Hill) will be educating us all in his talk “At a Remove: On Joseph Battell’s Centennial and Legacy” from 4:30-6 in the Abernathy Room. Read up on the event below:

February 23, 2015 is the centennial of Joseph Battell’s (Class of 1860) death. Bread Loaf land baron (in his day the largest private landowner in Vermont), environmentalist, crusading newspaperman, Middlebury College trustee, philanthropist, unreadable novelist, eccentric Joseph Battell left his stamp on his homeland. David Haward Bain presents an illustrated “magic lantern” talk on Joseph Battell’s life and works.

Date: Monday, February 23
Time: 4:30-6pm
Place: Axinn Abernathy Room

Middlebrow’s First Show of the Semester, Tonight!

After an incredible Feb. Break Tour, featuring 4 shows, 11 sofas, 57 tweets and an unmeasurable amount of good times, Middlebrow is happy to be back performing for their favorite audience: their friends. Fans of improv comedy and/or fashion will not want to miss this show, entitled “Yer a Wizard, Harry Connick, Jr.”, since the Brau will be filling the beautiful Abernethy Room with both of those TONIGHT.

When asked whether he was excited for Middlebrow’s performance tonight, Super-Fan Alexander Khan ’17, who is also a member of the group, responded “Yes.” Charlotte Michaelcheck ’15, the eldest and blondest member of the group,  was asked the same question, to which she nodded.

The show will begin at 10:45PM this evening in the Abernethy Room in Axinn, so come on by after the Alpenglow For the Kids concert  (see below). This show is free and open to all.

Information regarding auditions for both of the college’s improv groups will be announced at the show and posted on Middbeat later in the week.

MCAB Presents: Alpenglow For The Kids (featuring D8)

alpenglow posterMiddlebury’s favorite Indie folk rock band is back to do a benefit concert for the kids at the University of Vermont Children’s Hospital! Come support For The Kids in kicking off Dance Marathon week!

When: Sunday, Feb. 22, 9pm
Where: Wilson Hall (McCullough Social Space)
Cost: free admission

Today: Outside In: Art of the Street Exhibition and Gallery Talk


The rumors are true! There is currently an amazing street art exhibit up at the Middlebury College Museum of Art. Today at 4:30 there will be a gallery talk from the exhibits cocurators Chris Murray and Emmie Donadio. Middbeat’s Anna Cerf ’18 took a trip down to the museum to give us a little sneak peak of what we have to look forward to.

Banksy, the street art legend, has come to Middlebury. The international icon, along with sixteen of today’s other most popular street artists, is on display in the two-month “Outside In: Art of the Street” exhibit that opened last week. If you love street art, hate it, respect it, or have never thought about it: go see what’s down at the museum.  Even if it’s your first time there. This show will blow your mind.

Also included in the exhibit are Shepard Fairey and JR, two of the most well-known names in street art. Shepard Fairey was the man behind the Obama “Hope” poster used in his 2008 campaign and the “Occupy Protester” image used on the cover of Time for their Person of the Year in 2011.  JR, who you may recognize from a Ted Talk or one of the final Colbert Report episodes, “flyposts” huge black and white photographs in public spaces.  This time, the photographs are of Midd students and the public space is the Museum.

One of the artists on display, Ben Eime, actually came to campus over Feb Break to paint two murals; one in the exhibit and the other on the wall outside the museum.  He has also made prints for Banksy, including, coincidentally, the single Banksy print that is in the Museum’s permanent collection, Christ With Shopping Bags.

Most of the pieces are silkscreen prints scaled down from work first painted on buildings.  The pieces cover a huge range of styles; many are political statements while plenty simply seem like sweet designs.  And some just can’t be described.

And in case Banksy somehow wasn’t enough to lure you to the Museum, Warhol, the father of the Pop Art Movement (and the guy who made the Marilyn Monroe prints, and the Campbell Soup cans) is the other temporary exhibit happening now at the Museum.  It’s a smaller exhibit: ten of his prints recently gifted by the Andy Warhol Foundation.  Definitely also not to be missed.

Both exhibits ends April 19.  The Museum’s open every day until 5 pm, except for Mondays when it’s closed. Get there, if you know what’s good for you.

Date: Today February 19th
Time: 4:30pm
Place: Middlebury College Museum of Art (MCA)
Cost: Freeeeee!!


Language in Motion Info Sessions


Interested in using your language skills to make a meaningful difference in our community? For any upper level language student, this sounds like a really awesome initiative that allows Middlebury students to engage with members of Addison county. Julia Angeles ’15 writes in:

Interested in helping middle and high school students expand their knowledge of world language and culture? Language in Motion might be for you! LiM is a Community Engagement program that connects international students, study abroad returnees, and upper level language students with classrooms in Addison County.

Our first info session (at the Community Engagement office) is this Wednesday, 2/18, from 7:30-8:30pm, and we have another one next Monday, 2/23, from 4:30-5:30 PM. There will be snacks! If you are interested but can’t make it (or have questions), feel free to shoot an email to Kristen Mullins ([email protected]). Otherwise, you can apply by Wednesday, 2/25, to become a presenter.

For more info, check out go/lim!

Date: Today– February 18th
Time: 7:30-8:30pm
Place: Community Engagement Office (118 South Main Street, behind the library)
Cost: Free!

Student Group Profile: Mountain Club

With the start of a new semester, you may be wondering what new activities you should get involved with? Well stop your tossing and turning because lucky for you MiddBeat is scoping out some of Middlebury’s finest to guide you to a successful semester. This week we sat down with Joe Lovelace ’17 and Anahí Naranjo ’17, the Co-President and the Outreach Coordinator of the Mountain Clu, to find out what the MMC has been up to.

middbeat: so what is the Mountain Club?
The Mountain Club is the outdoors club at Middlebury so we lead trips of all sorts: canoeing, day hikes, backpacking, bird watching, snow shoeing, cross country skiing, basically anything and everything outside. We also have weekly meetings and plan social events like Firesides where we get together in Brooker (the outdoor interest house), hangout, and eat a home cooked meal. 

What do you have going on right now?
JL: Over Winter Carnival weekend we had a really successful event called Northern Lights which is an exciting exhibition of the mountainess spirit trapped inside everyone during J-Term unleashed in the form of human dog sled races, snow shoe relays, and ice dancing. We also had tons of excellent food and hot chocolate. There was a really big turnout and it seemed like everyone had an awesome time. A lot of our guides spent J-Term preparing for FOO which unfortunately was canceled due to the weather but we have been taking out multiple winter trips and increasing our volume of certified winter guides. We’ve also been doing a lot of trail maintenance to beef up the cabins and trails aspect of MMC in order to prepare for the new lodge that is coming near Breadloaf (Burgin Lodge). We’ve also been working on the Catamont Trail system to build better relationships with the people who perform most of the trail maintenance in our area. But the big trips coming up are for spring break where we will be sending people as far north as Canada and as far west as Moab in Utah.

What should prospective members of the Middlebury community know about Mountain Club?
JL: Well incase people didn’t know, we have gear hours from 4:30-7 on Tuesday and Thursday in the FIC where you can check out everything from sleeping bags, tents, and headlamps to snow shoes and cross-country skis. There are TONS of free camping and other sorts of trips going out this spring that are open to anyone interested-no experience necessary. We really want to get people camping and hiking who have never done it before because we literally have tens of thousands of dollars worth of gear and live in such an accessible and beautiful place that everyone should enjoy. We also have naked calendars for sale now for only $10 a piece, they are a great way to see your favorite mountain folk baring it all (pun intended)- plus it includes all the faces of the moon! Check out Mr. February ;) You can also feel free to send your tastefully nude photos to the Mountain Club email to be featured next year.

What kind of outreach are you doing this year?
AN: We’ve been trying to go beyond the club’s previous outreach efforts because before we were focusing on outreach outside of the college like at local schools and getting kids to enjoy the outdoors, but now we are reaching more inward. There is honestly a lack of diversity within our club and campus, historically MMC has not had strong representation of people of color and we’re currently working to address this issue. We’re trying to reach more students within the school who haven’t had a lot or any exposure to the outdoors so we have been collaborating with other orgs on campus.

What collaborations are happening?
AN: We are currently planning a retreat/discussion fireside with UMOJA (the African Student Organization) and we are trying to create beginner only trips where we will have a sign-up exclusively for people who have never gone on a trip before because maybe they have been intimidated by the experience of other participants. We are also going to plan something with SNG (Sunday Night Group) but that is still in the works. If any clubs, groups, or individuals are interested in having the MMC facilitate an outdoor retreat or would like to collaborate with the club, feel free to reach out to me at [email protected]

If, after reading this, you feel inspired to conquer the great outdoors or hang out with a group of really fun bearded folk, the MMC meets on Wednesday at 6pm in Coltrane. If you would like to be on the emailing list to learn about all of the fun trips going out, email [email protected].