Friday, February 23, 2007

The International Ice Patrol Classifies Iceberg Size; Some of the Smallest Icebergs are Classified as Either "Growlers" or "Bergy Bits"

Another week, and now Spring break is but two full weeks away! I can hardly believe it! Midterms are looming, and the second module of my English class will be starting up as my ten-page German translation will be needing to be turned in! The excitement never ends!
Stammtisch this week was outstanding! As promised, Herr Kremling was able to get in contact with the three German organ builders putting up the new organ in a local church, and they joined our little round tables at Stammtisch! Stephan, Michael, and Andreas (I do hope I’ve spelled their names correctly!) dined with us, sharing their expertise and experiences with organs the world over. Stammtisch numbers swelled to the largest that I have personally seen them, which was encouraging, and a good time was had by all. So enthusiastic was there reception, that they were offered a chance to see Ohio Wesleyan’s organ in Grey Chapel on Saturday morning before one of them had to head back to Germany. Suggestions for getting a true feel of America were offered, and several Delaware eateries had their names put forward, and we talked past the “normal” Stammtisch timing, but it was entirely worth the time. Andreas even suggested that I stop by the church sometime to say hello and see the organ, which I hope to find time for in the near future! The start of my week is looking a little crowded, but perhaps I can stop in later in the week!
Poet Laureate Ted Kooser made a stop at Ohio Wesleyan on Friday, and he brought his astounding poetry with him. At four he held a small question and answer session during which students and professors had the opportunity to ask him any questions at all, for he indeed said he’d answer them. His perspective was very interesting, and his earnest answers made him a great speaker. What got him interested in poetry, one might ask? Girls. He had the group mesmerized, and, later that night when he read several of his poems aloud, he easily received vehement reactions. The audience laughed, cried, waited with bated breath, and hung onto his every word. His poems, though seemingly simple in form and easy to understand, garnered this strong feedback almost effortlessly. My grandparents were able to come in and attend, and both raved about him afterwards; everyone did, though: Kooser held a book signing after speaking, and all of his books sold out while the line clumped happily before him, each awaiting his or her turn to step forward and have their books signed.
Below are some shots of Koosner as he read as well as one of University Hall at night and some art placed on the lawn in front of Slocum.

Rather than the usual German Word of the Day, the special feature space will be given over to a poem by Ted Kooser that Professor Olmstead sent around campus via e-mail to help get out word of the coming of Kooser, so to speak. Read, savor, and, most of all, enjoy.

By Ted Kooser

The green shell of his backpack makes him lean
into wave after wave of responsibility,
and he swings his stiff arms and cupped hands,

paddling ahead. He has extended his neck
to its full length, and his chin, hard as a beak,
breaks the cold surf. He's got his baseball cap on

backward as up he crawls, out of the froth
of a hangover and onto the sand of the future,
and lumbers, heavy with hope, into the library.

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