I have always felt that giving is more rewarding than recieving–there is so much genuine joy in helping someone else and brightenign their day just a little bit. When I got to campus, I happened upon a club which gave me a wonderful, fun way to do that–Campus Cursive! The motto of the club–Happiness is a Renewable Resource–appealed to me, because it was so simple and so true. Joy spreads in ripples. As Buddha once said, “Thousands of candles can be lit from a single candle, and the life of the candle will not be shortened. Happiness never decreases by being shared.” What, you might ask, does Campus Cursive do to spread joy here at Puget Sound? We write letters. About fifteen a week, give or take, at a big table in Langlow House, music playing and with lots of laughter. The basic concept is this: there are two main submission boxes on campus, one in Diversions Cafe and the other in Oppenheimer, and several in residence halls. There are forms attached to the boxes which ask for some basic information: the name of the letter’s intended recipient, and why they need or deserve a letter. For example, whoever filled out the form might check the box that says that theirfriend “needed a pick me up”, but they might also just “want to tell them how awesome they are”. There’s also a blank space at the bottom of the form for comments. We pick up the forms, and then, we write the letters and sign them Campus Cursive. We are hoping to bring a ray of sunshine into someone’s life, especially if it’s been feeling gray. When I read forms that say things like, “My friend is really stressed and needs help,” I am reminded once again of the importance of small acts of kindness, and I hope fervently as I seal the envelope that this piece of paper in my hand can be the catalyst that turns someone’s day around, or at least their mood. Moments of happiness turn into hours turn into days, so at Campus Cursive we try our best to bring people the moments, and in doing so we bring joy to ourselves as well–as our lively meetings can attest. Please fill out forms in Div or Opp–we really do enjoy writing the letters, and full boxes makes us feel appreciated and needed! If you want to get involved with us, come to meetings at 5 pm on Wednesdays at Langlow House! Letter writing is a wonderful and too often overlooked art form, and you might find that an hour with a pen, paper and some stickers revitalizes you for the second half of the week. Have a wonderful Halloween–and wherever you are, whether students on our campus, alumni, prospective students or just casual readers–spread happiness today.
Hello! My name is Casey O’Brien. I’m a freshman here at Puget Sound. I am a part of the Humanities program. I love theater, creative writing, and the outdoors, among lots of other interests! At this point, I am thinking that I will be a Sociology and Anthropology (SOAN) major with a double minor in Theater and Latin American Studies. I come from the Bay Area in California, so the lovely fog and rain in Tacoma is home to me. I grew up within ten minutes of the SF bay, so I also love being on the coast.
I am learning so much here on campus! There’s always something happening here, so there is never an opportunity to feel bored. This weekend was a special one for me, because I was a director for the Town Crier Speaks Festival, our student theater festival, which went up this weekend. Town Crier is a one act festival written, produced and directed by students—it is such a unique and wonderful venue for Puget Sound creativity. My own show, Game of Life, was a truly incredible process. My cast helped me to grow as a person and an artist, and I feel so lucky to have met them. What is so very interesting and dynamic about our campus is that people from so many different areas—ages, majors, etc—can interact and learn from one another. One of my actors is graduating this semester as a Biology major; with my interests, we might never have even met, let alone gotten to know one another, at a different school. At a larger university, or a university that didn’t encourage students to try new things the way UPS does, a first semester freshman would never have directed a one act at all.
Town Crier opened on Thursday night and closed on Saturday, which meant that today was definitely bittersweet for me. My parents, here visiting for Family Weekend, went home to California today, but my sadness at watching them go was matched by the contentedness of knowing that I have two homes now, one in Washington and one in NorCal. Our president, Ronald Thomas, aka RonThom, famously opens his speech at orientation by saying “Welcome Home”—and truly, we are. Puget has stolen my heart—from the moment I stepped on campus, doors have been opened for me.
This been a weekend of beginnings, endings and special moments. When my cast handed me the big bouquet of red roses they had bought for me, a handwritten card on top, I felt like crying for joy and sadness all at once—which is a good sign. Puget is a place where students will make connections, will feel deeply. Loggers are genuine, and they throw themselves in. In the spirit of the Northwest, we’ll always go on an adventure. We show up—as Town Crier’s full house and standing ovation testifies. This has been a weekend to remember…. Just as so many here are.