Personal reflections

Fellows Travel Phrasebook: A user's guide to the strange language of the 2014 WPI fellows

Fellows Travel Phrasebook: A user's guide to the strange language of the 2014 WPI fellows

“Extreme FOMO”

Definition: The intense fear of missing out on experiences, places or events.

Usage: An expression of the state of anxiety generally caused by having hit a wall of exhaustion and being unable to join in a particular group activity as a result. For instance, “Guys, I have extreme FOMO that you’re all going to this awesome-sounding place and doing this awesome-sounding thing, but I need to sleep / pack my suitcase / write my blog.” And then you miss something like this:

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Of newsrooms and noise

Of newsrooms and noise

The opportunities we’ve had in the last several weeks to visit some of the most fabled newsrooms in the U.S. have been both inspiring and humbling. Whether standing by the hallowed coffee machines of the New York Times after attending the morning news meeting, or making idle chit chat in the elevator at the Washington Post, I’ve been struck by how hard so many people must have worked in these newsrooms, to turn them into the living legends that they are.

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“Standing Up by Sitting Down”

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No, you won’t be splashed in your face with vinegar and dusted by pepper, or beaten by fists of furious racial segregation supporters when you try, 50 years after, to crawl inside the skin of activists to experience what they did during their peaceful action aimed to stop discrimination in the south of the U.S.A.

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Why 9/11 still gives me goose bumps

Windows on the World, it was called. And I remember that the view from the 107th floor of the North Tower, one of the Twin Towers in New York City, seemed to be exactly that to me. So high up the horizon wasn’t its usual flat, but became a slightly bended line, revealing the roundness of the Earth. It invoked feelings of being small and insignificant; a humbling experience.

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The privilege of protest

If you’ve visited the White House in the last few weeks, it’s likely you’ve bumped into one of the Capital’s more colourful characters. His name is Chance Camelslayer Addison (the Camelslayer part is trademarked, by the way), and every day he stands, not so silently, and flips the President the bird.

(Photo credit: Ilina Stoyanova)

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Traditionally Inward

This is my second visit to the United States and very interesting experiences in terms of my interaction with the local people. It has always been a great to talk to the American people as they are very welcoming and emphatic listeners at the same time. Though traditionally inward, there is a growing concern among the people about the U.S foreign policy.

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Who makes the clown laugh?

According to film director Brian Levant, who worked with Robin Williams when his career took of, everyone was stunned by his energy and creativity. But Levant also remembers how Williams fueled himself with drugs.

"Every time he'd sneeze, he'd say, “there goes a hundred bucks.” You'd never know it on show night, though. An audience was really his drug of choice, and he'd dazzle them."

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