On the Memorial Day weekend, a group of ex-SAIS students and assorted hangers-on decided to honor the sacrifices made for freedom on the sands of Iwo Jima and Grenada by going to the beach. There, we re-created battle scenes with a voice-activated water pistol, remembered napalm victims over a bar-b-que, and reminded ourselves of the continuing need for a US presence abroad at a showing of Mission Impossible, which we all thought sucked. This might be in part because of the heavy foreign presence, which either dampened US nationalism or increased the group level of taste / snobbiness.
Indeed, the high level of cosmopolitanism in the group was shown not least by the choices made for the design of sandcastles. No mean, squat Fort Knox for Makram, but rather the elegant, flying-buttressed Notre Dame. When they had finished, Makram and Chris Donat had created structure that certainly looked more like Notre Dame than did the rest of the beach.
The sophistication of the group overleaped itself again in the games (and there were many) of charades. Silent movies from the heyday of the Ankara cinema industry, unforgettable classics from the 1912 Oslo film festival, anything ever shown at Sundance... Ayse gets points for doing 1984 without resorting to counting her fingers. I think I get points, too, for the best impression of sex with a pussy-cat, although I can't remember what the film was.
Talking of sex, we saw dolphins, but nobody got close enough to them to get arrested, like that Welsh guy did [?], even though it was pretty obvious that they were consenting. There was also a fair amount of sex going on in the house, I assume, but as none of it involved me, I can't comment. My consolation prize was getting to spend the weekend in the same bedroom as two beautiful women.
We also played trivial pursuit, in which the men showed themselves to be more trivial than the women twice over. It was an interesting sociological event though. The men, with no discussion, would all shout out what they thought the answer was, and the loudest one would be told by the questioner that he was wrong. The women would sit in a huddle for twenty minutes discussing the merits of truly stupid responses with the same even-handedness as the right answer, before picking the truly stupid one.
Most of the time was spent on the beach. We played volleyball--rather, they played volleyball, I played fluffball--but everyone was very understanding. Nico, Serra, Markus and Tonje were all good enough to hit back some of the many balls that I didn't ("What? You passed the ball to me? But I'm on your Side!"). We played soccer, and the side with the German beat the side with the Englishman, which obviously won't happen again [Note: this was written before last Wednesday's game]. We threw fisbees into thorn-bushes repeatedly. We swam, we sunned ourselves. I rather enjoyed hanging out with the beautiful set, even though l ooked somewhat incongruous with my hairy pink legs and paunch. Tonje, especially, had a good line in changing swimsuits on the beach.
We ate crabs and drank beer and discussed. Markus left Makram to defend NDI from accusations of irrelevance, uselessness and inefficiency, perhaps foretelling Markus' move to the global center of international capitalism (relevant and mercilessly efficient, crushing the world's workers underfoot etc. etc.). We got bit and put up screens and got bit more. We marvelled over Magic's basketball and great meals and the wonders of America, in particular drive-through beer shops. Altogether, the best way to remember the fallen of the Spanish-American war that I can think of. Thanks go to Serra for finding the place, which was beautiful. Let's do it again soon!
Life has been pretty rough over the last two months. As still I wait for Brussels to decide that I'm worth just as much as any Austrian or Swede, I felt the pull of Italy once again. So, continuing to postpone any thought of entering the real world, I've been back on my bikes dragging over-weight, over-paid Americans (careful - the corporate, corpulent business community can be seriously detrimental to your health) around Toscana and Veneto. It's a miracle that none of them have had a heart attack.
Some though do inspire; one 70 year old finished the day's 25 mile bike cycle through the prosecco vines of the Veneto and promptly embarked on a 5 mile run. Nutter.
Other excitements involved staying in the same hotel as Sandra Bullock and Chris O'Donnell who were in the Veneto filming Lord luvvie Attenborough's latest biopic about Ernest Hemingway who, aged 19 and working as a Red Cross driver, was injured and fell in love with his nurse. Called "In love and war", it'll be released December in the States in time for the Oscars.
And yes, I did see her, but no I couldn't talk to her (my mouth was already gaping wide). She is cute. And Chris O'Donnell's not bad either - if you go in for men with a fetish for wearing red capes.
Otherwise, I'm now back home with one more bike trip in the Cotswolds, attempting to recover from the shock that we actually can play football, then August off before I finally bow to pressure and join the working world.
Finally, Matthew Rose plus Kim (his adorable) came zipping down at the weekend in his new red MG; shades, flowing hair (his brown, hers blond), country lanes, dappled sunshine.... Oh, to be in England, now that summer's here. Vogue and Country Casuals have already put in bids for their respective front covers.
Zach Messitte's new address: Zach.Messitte@turner.com
We're no longer alone in this jhuniverse: As of last weekend the B'95 DC'96 alumni have a website as well, thanks to Aaron Hirsch. It's time for a connubial visit at http://www.jhu.edu/~sais/alumni/96/home.html
But be sure to behave yourselves now... (Heel, Cole -- good boy)
This development also means you should start seeing cross-links in the S@IS.mailroom and on the Other S@IS.factions page. While we're on the topic, could you take a minute to ensure your address in the mailroom is current and accurate? And if you notice somebody else's that isn't, could you drop me a note? Thanks.
I thought I'd add an update on what is going on with me. I have finally found a job with an international energy consulting firm in Washington. I live with Ivette Barbeite but we will both be vacating the SAIS/Bologna Hotel at the end of August. Who knows where we'll end up but everyone is welcome. It's sad to leave but life goes on. The weather is alternately hot, steamy and wet here in D.C. We are now in the midst of a wet spell even as the Olympic torch enters "our fair city." I
like my job so far, but the hours can be brutal. Anyone who knows about ldc gas companies and customer service trends send e-mail ASAP. This is my latest project and I have'nt a clue. I hope you're all doing well and hope to hear from you soon.
Bye for now. Hazlyn.
Hi, I am back in Austria and back on the net. My new address is email@example.com
Guess I am a little bit late, but Austria is always a little bit back in time...
Greetings from good old Europe. Ciao, Mischa
As most people in NY and a few in DC (I was down there two weeks ago) know, I work for MasterCard International doing bank and sovereign risk analysis for the not so good banking scene of Asia-Pacific. It at least gives me something to keep me busy. And I am very busy (I relate to Beth West's longing for an hourly wage).
I've been doing a bit more than work though, which includes occasional outings with SAIS people here in NY. Jame (with the help of very hot weather and an evening run) watched me drink more than was good for me last weekend (a story that doesn't merit a famous DiBiasio contribution).
I won't say much more than this (or Jeff Rowland will accuse me of masturbating on line). I look forward to seeing all and any who come through NYC.
...I made it to L.A. safely--after a 4,500 mile trek! My Dad and I had a great cross-country trip with plenty of highlights and adventures: Niagara Falls, the Bridges of Madison County, Yellowstone National Park, Salt Lake City, and Las Vegas...in addition to an unfortunate encounter with a Wyoming state trooper for speeding (surprisingly, I wasn't at the wheel!)
L.A. is treating me well so far...it's been 85-90 degrees every day, very sunny with a breeze and cooling down a lot at night. The family I'm living with are great, with two rambunctious teenage boys and interesting parents. The neighborhood is quiet and very pleasant, an oasis in the midst of chaotic L.A.!
No progress on the job front yet, but I'll keep you posted on that and other L.A. adventures...last night Todd and I went to the premiere of "Stealing Beauty" and we saw lots of stars at the cast party, Steven Spielberg, Elle MacPherson, Carrie Fisher and more...no scandals to report, however. The party was so L.A., I couldn't help laughing! Lots of BPs, weirdos, and straight-laced preppies, all mixed together.
E-mails and calls are very much appreciated out here in LaLa Land...I hope to hear from you very soon. My e-mail is: EmmaCherny@aol.com and my new phone is: (213) 934-8988
Anthony Randazzo's new address at the Inter-American Development Bank: firstname.lastname@example.org
Hi everyone! As you all know by now, Janos and I became parents on our 1st. wedding anniversary (December 31, 1995). Angelina Helena is almost 6 months old now and growing up fast. She got her first two teeth early - April 20th (for those of you who have no clue - teeth typically come in at 6 - 7 months at the earliest). Angelina has also managed to find her big toe on her left foot (i.e. she loves to suck on it).
Other big news is that we'll be visiting the DC area from July 3 - 21 so if any of you have time to visit and catch up on life, send me an email at work: email@example.com. Hope to hear from you soon (please do not call my parents' phone number in Bowie - we are surprising them).
Tschuss from Munich
Although Markus thought that he "f..... up" his World Trade Organization interview, the interviewers had a different impression of him. Well, Markus got a call from Geneva at 7:00 am (how dare they) last Friday. They want him!! And it looks like he is going -- after he finishes up at National Democratic Institute.
I am still working at the World Bank and... There will be more information on that soon. If anyone has anything to say about Geneva (nightlife, job market, PhD, sailing, chocolate, watches, etc...) I would love to hear it.
By the way, DC is fun. We play a lot of volleyball, try to avoid crime, and drink beer with other SAISers to cool off. I'd better do some work now.
Someone on the website asked for a Michael Braun update, so here is one.
Michael, by his own modest admission, is uncovering financial scandal and terrorist cabals links und rechts. He is on a year-long training position with the Axel Springer publishing empire which owns all sorts of fun german publications ending with the syllable -sblatt. There is a rumor that he may get the chance to play at being somebody's London correspondent this summer, but this is unconfirmed.
By all accounts he is poor but happy, and well on the way to completing the 73rd volume of his early memoirs: "Michael: schrum-schrum or foo-foo?"
He has also hooked up with the beautiful stable boy on the Getty's Buckinghamshire estate. "Victoria is just wonderful," he explains. When last in London using up part of the ten-week vacation that the German government so thoughtlessly imposed on him, he reclined with a dry martini in his paw, exclaiming: "Isn't life just wonderful? Isn't it wonderful?" You read it here first -- before it appears in volume 74.
He has no e-mail address, being far too much of an artist to bother with anything as humdrum as technology.
...I work for Knight-Ridder Tribune Biz News (p/t evenings/weekends) and full time at CSIS (Center for Strategic and International Studies) as associate editor of The Washington Quarterly. CSIS/TWQ isn't the same fun hectic schedule as a daily, but the down-time is wonderfully relaxing. (Wish I had some now; we're on deadline for the end of this month.)
Glenn Manoff's address: GlennManoff@msn.com
Jeff Rowland's new address: firstname.lastname@example.org
My Email - email@example.com
I have been working at a consulting firm here in the Boston area since August '95. However, I go down to DC a lot to visit Amie Hougen as often as I can. Also, I have seen Netta Korin, who has let her contract with [Barnum, Bailey &] Lehman Bros. lapse [in NY], and will spend the next few months ona beach somewhere. [So no email to her for a while.]
Hope all is well with the rest of the gang - Guido S.
I've finally joined the electronic world. After 6 hellish months of temping in Washington, D.C., I finally landed a job as the U.S. Agency for International Development as an information officer in the Office of Foreign Disaster Assistance. My "portfolio" includes Liberia and Sierra Leone. I've already paid my dues - since April 6 (when fighting began again in Monrovia) I've been learning the joys of 12-hour days, working weekends, and many other fun things. I'm on the net by the way, at firstname.lastname@example.org. Do you [does anyone?] have news from Michael Braun? I'd love to know what he's doing? Jenny
Those of us stuck here in the capital swamp are trying to put together a happy hour (led by the fearless Jenny Gayer) -- any chance you New York workaholic types might road trip down to attend the festivities? We're shooting for June 21 (a week from Friday). We should even be able to round up some lovely accomodations for anyone brave enough to make the journey.
Jay and I are involved in an amazing public service project called VolunteerAmerica and we need your help! (that is the collective you . . . darn this language that constrains us to a single 2nd person possesive pronoun). Building on the success of NetDay96, VolunteerAmerica uses the WWW to revolutionize volunteerism. Since you made it this far, letting you know about our project and how you can help is simple--it is already on the web! You can jump directly to a prototype of the page.
We have an information sheet on line as well. The site will eventually be located at www.volunteeramerica.org
This is a national project and we need your help. You can get involved at ground zero. PLEASE take a look at the information sheet and help spread the word.
Much love, cj
PS [In reply to Julia Holman's June 10 post:] I, together with a group of people out here, bought a bunch of Olympic tickets that we are not going to be able to use. Apparently, the actual organizer of the whole fiasco does not expect to have much trouble selling them for face value, but if any of you out there want them, let me know quick and I will put you in direct contact with him. I do not know all of the events or locations, but we had a lot of tickets. They may be gone soon, so act quickly if you want them.
For anyone interested in Olympic tickets, check out www.atlanta.olympic.org. A co-worker of mine just got tickets for the men's finals of the 100-metre dash, for a reasonable price. Apparently people who ordered blocks of tickets were not allowed to pick and choose among what they got, and had to either take them all or return them all. So now there are some choice tickets available.
Jon Sinclair's latest address, c/o his father: email@example.com
(Jon writes from Bologna, "Am currently buzzing round tuscany again on bikes. Will write soon with more news. ciao.")
Presently I am in DC for a short visit (same purpose as last time), i.e. spending my time at the World Bank. Of cource I am also visiting SAIS-students from 94-95 (those still in DC, among them Makram ).
This is to give notice to all of my friends that my last official day as a consultant at the World Bank will be this Friday. [By now last Friday]
I will not be moving far away, as I have decided to accept a position just down the street (or south of the border, depending on your perspective) at the IDB.
Until I am set up there, I can be reached at home at 202-265-1082.
This S@IS.faction Page URL: http://sighs.com/S@IS.newsroom.html
Inaugurated November 7, 1995; last revised June 28, 1996.
Questions, feedback: contact Stefan Geens at firstname.lastname@example.org