Category Archives: Feature


Iron Eyes Cody being awesome

Iron Eyes Cody being awesome


If you’re at all into the music scene at Midd, you’re most likely obsessed with Iron Eyes Cody, the Fat Heads, or Milk Chocolate. Probably all three. With reason, because these student bands are pretty fuckin amazing. After completely packing Meade Chapel when opening for Alpenglow last month, Iron Eyes Cody realized it was most definitely time for something bigger. And, to all of our content, the extended Vermont music scene agreed: Iron Eyes has been selected to play at Higher Ground this December, they’re bringing along Milk Chocolate and the Fat Heads (also student/alumni bands), and, to amp the stakes even higher they are performing on the same night as Lucius and Bahamas, two equally awesome (and rather famous) bands.

Iron Eyes Cody, Milk Chocolate, and the Fat Heads will be performing in the Showcase Lounge, at Higher Ground, on December 4, 2014. The same night, Lucius and Bahamas will be performing in the Higher Ground Main Ballroom, and anyone who buys tickets to the Lucius/Bahamas concert will be able to see the Middlebury bands as well, free of additional cost. Needless to say, this is an incredible opportunity to see a bunch of bands without dropping a ton of cash.

Tickets are $5 in advance and $10 the day of the show, and can be bought HERE on Higher Ground’s website. This concert event is sponsored by the Chittenden Emergency Food Shelf, and everyone is encouraged to bring canned goods to donate.


We’re hoping to get a huge Middlebury showing at this event, so be sure to grab a ticket before they sell out, and come support some of Midd’s most talented musicians. What better way to celebrate before heading out for winter break?

Tickets for the Showcase Lounge (Middlebury bands only) available HERE

Tickets for Lucius and Bahamas (plus access to the Showcase Lounge!) available HERE

Learn more about each of the Middlebury bands below (info from Higher Ground’s Website):

Iron Eyes Cody:

Everything from slow and haunting to dancy and electrifying, indie rock group Iron Eyes Cody 10689732_1548211012078011_2724811879245445906_nutilize saxophone and harmonica as well as modulated guitar and electric piano to create a diverse sound. The group’s lyrically intense, original songs can best be described as the soundtrack to your next road trip. Featuring Evan Allis ‘15.5 (Guitar & Vocals), Renn Mulloy ‘15.5 (Vocals) Noah Stone ‘16.5 (Keys), Rob Shaw ’16 (Lead Guitar/Bass), Mark Balderston ‘15.5 (Saxophone/Harmonica/Vocals), Joe Leavenworth ‘16.5 (Bakali, Guitar/Bass), and Patrick Freeman ‘15.5 (Drums).

Milk Chocolate:

Milk Chocolate is a Neo-Soul trio from Middlebury College with an untarnished reputation for 483833_316022361856905_1138059393_ntight grooves and tighter vocal harmonies. Their covers and original tunes showcase a mellow sound inspired by soul, jazz, and modern R&B greats from D’Angelo and Erykah Badu to Robert Glasper. Featuring Mohan Fitzgerald ’14, Tito Heiderer ‘14.5 and Innocent Tswamuno ’15.

Fat Heads:

The Fatheads are a party blues band based in Burlington, Vermont. They are a high energy two-guitar & drums trio, influenced by houserockin’ blues legends like Hound Dog Taylor and Lightnin’ Hopkins, and bring the ruckus with ecstatic irreverence. Their legs are strong and their bellies are filled with pie. Featuring Eric Benepe ‘13.5, Taylor Bickford ’14, and Austin Bergeron ’13

A Call for the Privileged to Consider Race in Upbringing and Memory

White Privilege

Last Monday was a big moment in contemporary American racial politics.  A grand jury in Missouri decided not to indict (now ex)-Ferguson police officer Darren Wilson for fatally shooting an unarmed black teenager, Michael Brown, spurring on both local and nation-wide protest at a level not seen since this past summer’s headline grabbing upheaval.  While many anticipated this decision as the natural conclusion for a criminal justice system tipped against black and brown Americans, the decision not to indict the Wilson confirmed the worst nightmares of those hoping for a mere glimmer of justice in an otherwise bleak scenario.

Opinions over the court case aside, the ever developing story line and movement surrounding Brown’s death has ushered in a new wave of discussion and scrutiny of race in the U.S.  I would be surprised if many reading this article today passed their full Thanksgiving without at least a mention of Ferguson, let alone a meal-prolonging, heated debate about the myriad levels of structural and phenomenological issues presented by this poignant example of state violence against people of color.  Such discussions are productive, passionate, and ongoing, yet often fail to involve the personal other than opinion.  It is much easier to talk about the events leading up to Brown’s death, the evidence presented to the grand jury, and the merit of non-violent vs. violent protest than it is to delve into how we personally (and by we I largely mean those of benefiting from white privilege; more on that later) are implicated in the larger arena of racial politics.

Continue reading

MiddWrites: You Will Not Waste This Time

The author, having jumped from the tree that inspired this poem, in Sedona.

The author, having jumped from the tree that inspired this poem, in Sedona.

Amongst the numerous submissions we received at MiddWrites this week, we have selected poem for today’s creative writing feature, titled “You will not waste this time” by Ben Harris ’17. Though not about alcohol (and it’s poisonous and delightful properties) like last week’s feature , Ben’s poem covers some topics that are a little less easily communicated. Give the poem a read, and see what you get from it–theres plenty here for you to enjoy.

As usual, we encourage you to set aside the mind numbing labor of your daily studies and settle down for some freshly-brewed student literature. If you feel inspired, please send your works to us at [email protected] or [email protected] to be published here on Middwrites and contribute to the thriving community of writers we have on campus.

You will not waste this time
by Ben Harris

Sun at half-mast on Sedona sandstone like a high water line of light.
You are looking through the lens at the years
Stretching across the strata of rock,
And I am dripping wet, standing in stillness at your side
The way driftwood washes ashore unannounced.
Cool air on naked skin tells of twilight,
All the time that remains
Until the aperture of this hour curls in on itself,
And leaves us worrying away at the tortoise shells of our selves
Wondering where did it all go, this life
We were rumored to be living.
Minutes from now, when we step into that car and drive from here
The full moon of the moment will sliver.
By then I will be far-gone
Into the days laid out ahead,
Like long ribbons of road, remote.
Out there is a future in which
I am telling myself
You will not waste this time
You will not waste this time
As if this life is some sort of school detention
Scrawled over and over across slate.
So it seems there is nothing more to do but
Walk to that tree bridged between the banks
And like the beaver,
Cut my teeth on the bark of meaning.
You will follow with the camera as I climb,
Bleeding from these bared soles.
When I reach the last of the branches,
I will pause, and prostrate myself
Before the water striders forever skimming the surface of mystery,
Meanwhile the rest of us stop to think
And sink.
When I let myself go and slip into the waiting stream
Your shutter may break the silence.
But I won’t have heard—
I’ll be busy listening
To the story spoken in the syllables of river stones,
Their whispers coming through water like whale song.
And in the end I will have to trust you to tell me
If falling from that tree
Did I make a sound.

Tunisia after the “Arab Spring”: Can It Be a Model for Other Countries in the Arab World?

Mabrouka M’Barek

Mabrouka M’Barek

Tonight from 4:30 to 6 in the Robert A. Jones ‘59 Conference Room, member of Tunisia Constituent Assembly Mabrouka M’Barek will be giving her talk, “Tunisia after the ‘Arab Spring': Can It Be a Model for Other Countries in the Arab World?”.

M’Barek was born into a family originally from Bir Ali Ben Khalifa in the center of Tunisia, and studied law and economy in France. After moving to the US, she worked as an auditor specializing in financial control, risk management and fraud prevention, until she left the for-profit sector to dedicate her work to humanitarian NGOs and human rights-based civil societies in the Middle East. After the Tunisian revolution in 2011, she returned to Tunisia to join the Congress for the Republic and was elected to the constituent assembly.

If you are not in M’Barek’s Winter Term class titled “Writing the Tunisian Constitution: Process and Problematics.”, take advantage of this rare opportunity to hear a member of the Tunisia Constituent Assembly speak on the problems and potentials faced by Tunisia and the Arab World in the wake of The Arab Springs.

Date: Tuesday, November 18th (today)
Time: 4:30-6:00 p.m.
Place: Robert A. Jones ’59 Conference Room

FREE Comedy Show tomorrow: Naomi Ekperigin



Come by Crossroads tomorrow evening to catch a free stand-up show from the wonderful Naomi Ekperigin!

Naomi is an actor, stand-up comedian, and writer who has appeared on VH1, MTV, and FX’s Totally Biased  with W. Kamu Bell. Most recently, she worked as a staff writer on season two of Comedy Central’s Broad City and earlier this year, wrote and starred in the web series Everyday Scandal, produced by Above Average. Her humor writing and reviews have been published in, the Huffington Post, and You should follow her on Twitter @blacktress so you can be best friends. 

Date: Friday, November 14th 
8:00 pm
Place: Crossroads Cafe


Annual Mountain Film at Middlebury

10516830_587223004737789_4894883388967374277_nJoin us for a taste of one of the best outdoor film festivals out there– MountainFilm. Each year the MountainFilm festival takes place in Telluride, CO, packed with all kinds of wacky, beautiful, and jaw-dropping outdoorsy films. We are extremely lucky to have MountainFilm returning again this fall for a night of its best short films at Middlebury! In past years we’ve had a great showing of Middlebury students and members of the community to fill Dana! Make sure not to miss this epic evening full of climbing, surfing, skiing, slack lining, and more! For more information check out go/mountainfilm!

Hosted by the Middlebury Mountain Club

Date: Sunday, November 9th
Time: 7pm
Place: Dana Auditorium
Cost: Free and open to the public!

Introducing this year’s TEDx speakers…

Getting excited for this Sunday’s TEDxMiddlebury conference? This year’s event is guaranteed to be great, with talks by scientists, innovators, activists, and artists from both all over the country and here in VT.  Organizers have been working non-stop over the past 6 months preparing for what promises to be yet another enjoyable and informative event.  While most know former SGA President Rachel Liddell ’15 will represent the student body at the conference, you may not yet know the professors and visiting speakers speaking at the event. The following is a sneak peak at some of the speakers who’ll be presenting on the TEDx stage.  Don’t forget to get your tickets here!

mordecai_headshotMordecai-Mark Mac Low is a curator of astrophysics at the American Museum of Natural History in New York.  He studies the formation of planets and stars with computer simulations, and has curated two Space Shows at the Hayden Planetarium.

Continue reading

Ron Liebowitz’s Invitation for Discussion: A Translation by an of-age Middlebury student

Liebo XX

A particularly cunning student recently sent middbeat a satirical translation of Ron Liebowitz’s recent invitation to the student body to discuss campus social life.   While a magnanimous gesture from our President, students have been doubting how much this discussion will actually do to change the social atmosphere at the college.  The author wanted to preface the piece with the following:

The intention of this piece is not at all to personally attack President Liebowitz, whose invitation for discussion has been extremely well received and deserves respect.  I am caricaturizing and satirizing his very reasonable words in order to provoke students to think critically about the actual issues at hand – and hopefully inspire a laugh. After reading this, I hope students will consider the social motivation of students to perform certain behaviors, the motivations of the administration to implement certain policies, and the various effects thereof.

That being said, let’s get to the bottom of what Liebo was really getting at here:

Dear Students,

Ron Liebo: I am keenly aware of the frustration surrounding student social life on campus, and how the behavior of a few has unfortunately, but predictably, shaped our policies that limit social options for the responsible majority.

Translation: I am keenly aware of your recent complaints surrounding social life on campus, and how the inability of a few of your asinine peers to hold their liquor has ruined it for the rest of you. In response, we’ve implemented policies that make socializing within two miles of an open container more trouble than it’s reasonably worth. Don’t point the finger at us, though; clearly upperclassmen haven’t been fulfilling their responsibility to properly haze their underage peers, an age-old social practice that forces individuals to rapidly learn their limits of consumption, or die. Despite our best efforts, you assholes continue to try to “host parties” and “socialize” and “get wasted”. It’s almost like the more we try to control you, the more you try to rebel. Da fuck.

Continue reading

What’s With the Proctorbowl Instagram Celebrity?

Proctorbowl1As the infinite struggle to keep proctor bowls in their designated locations (no, your desk is not a designated location) wages on between the dining staff and Middlebury students, the infamous dish is traveling extensively, spreading Middlebury spirit to the far corners of the United States. Documenting these adventures is the anonymous Instagram account @proctorbowl whose bio reads: “Proctor bowls: where they’re at.” They’ve traveled pretty far from Middlebury, and it might be awhile before they come home. Sorry Proctor Staff.” The mysterious proctorbowl would like to remain anonymous to maintain the elusive and difficult to find nature of proctor bowls but Middbeat was able to score an exclusive interview with the student behind the account to answer some of your questions about the far-flung explorations. 

Middbeat: So, what is Proctor bowl?

Proctor Bowl (hereby referred to as PB): It’s sort of a hemispherical, hollow object that you can put soup in or water, if you’re out of cups.

Middbeat: Why did you start the Instagram?

PB: The original idea came from the Crampus with the back cover of their 2013 issue. It was a map showing Proctor bowls after they left Middlebury- where they were at. So I wanted to document that.

Middbeat: What kind of pictures do you post?

Continue reading

Recap: Silent March Against Police Brutality

IMG_1321[1] This past Wednesday marked the National Day of Protest Against Police Brutality, a nationwide movement to bring attention to and reform racist and oppressive policing.  In a show of solidarity, about 60 students and faculty gathered for a silent march, toting signs and candles from Ross dining hall to Olin and Mead Chapel.  Students broke the silence only to present readings giving personal and historical context to the police brutality and racial oppression inherent to the country’s criminal justice system.  The march at Middlebury was organized by a number of campus cultural organizations, including Distinguished Men of Color, Women of Color, Alianza, and Amnesty International.

The march was a point of action in Middlebury’s student movement to raise questions on the persistence of state violence and an invitation for those who aren’t familiar to get involved and join the national dialogue on race and policing.  Marchers wore black in part as mourning for the victims who have fallen but also as David Ollin Pesquiera ’17, co-chair of Alianza, put it “to symbolize the obscure blindness of our society to do right against wrong.”

While at Middlebury it can be difficult to comprehend the extent to which certain communities close to campus, and all across the country experience the backside of the law.  Just this past summer, national awareness of police brutality reached a peak not seen since the riots following the beating of Rodney King in 1991.  Between the demonstrations and outrage over the killing of Michael Brown in Ferguson, MO and mass mobilization following the death of Eric Garner in Staten Island at the hands of the NYPD, amonst other instances of police brutality, the issue many have been all too familiar with for years has come to the forefront of our national dialogue.  The march this past Wednesday was a reminder to the Middlebury community of the importance of this dialogue, and an opportunity for students to stand in solidarity with the nationwide movement to end police brutality and racialized policing.

middbeat caught up with some folks participating in the march about their reasons for showing support.  See on after the jump to read their accounts, and check out more photos from the march.

Continue reading