On Success … Seasoned with a Dash of Crazy

The last week of finals is the ideal time to peruse through the lost and found. I am not stealing; however, I am definitely taking something that is not mine, but it was forgotten, left behind, left for me to take! Because it is the end of the year, the College is just going to throw out/donate the unclaimed lost and found items anyway! The Sharples lost and found is my favorite. Lots of forgotten water bottles, hats, and notebooks. However, on the last day Sharples was open for the school year, there just happened to be a forgotten hula hoop. What could I possibly do with a hula hoop? Most of the water was drained out from it so it was really difficult to properly hula hoop. It was also ugly and pretty beat up. There is no other way to describe this hula hoop other than as trash. That is exactly why I rescued it from the lost and found.

After my delicious meal in Sharples, I felt crazy. There is something about making fresh quesadillas from the salad bar, the meat sticks (hot dogs), and the ice cream lady that just makes me feel joyfully crazy. I was hula hooping and just running around outside in circles. And I started spinning around, similar to how I spin when I throw a discus. I said to my favorite Sharples buddy, Cindy, “Wanna see how you throw a discus?!” I got in position to show off my throwing skills that I have been training for the past year. I rotated. I released. And then I ran. The hula hoop slammed right into a lamp post that was about 50 feet away. The lamp post literally SHOOK. I looked at Cindy as she was filming my ridiculousness and I held my hand over my mouth. I felt like a little kid who broke the rules and didn’t know what else to do other than to run for my life. I ran over to retrieve the hula hoop. With the damaged hula hoop in my hand I began to run toward our dorm. Midstride I looked back at Cindy. Cindy looked at me. That’s when we had the brilliant idea: let’s get the hula hoop hanging on the lamp post.

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Me appreciating my success at Swarthmore. Photo credits: Cindy Li ’20

I began to start lobbing it to get it onto the lamp post. Each time I tossed it up, Cindy videotaped the motions. Each time I failed she had to delete the video and restart the taping. On the 15th try I felt true success for the first time at Swarthmore. I forgot about the meager B- I got in intensive introductory German. I forgot about my 7th place finish in the discus at conference championships. All I felt was the glory of successfully getting the hula hoop onto this one lamp post.

You are only at Swarthmore for 4 years. We figured that we had to do something. Something that would leave a mark. Something that in years to come students will remember us for. So we left a hula hoop on the lamp post on the upper right hand corner of Mertz field. Not many freshmen can say the same.

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Pictured: Cindy’s water color interpretation of the hula hoop on the lamp post. Photo: Rachel Pomerantz ’19

Update: the hula hoop was taken down within a week. On to the next adventure I guess. More successes to come…

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