Print Edition: April 9, 2014
The Cascade is a lot of things
The Cascade is a cake.
The Cascade is a cat.
The Cascade is a casserole.
The Cascade is a ship.
The Cascade is a stupid student newspaper.
I am listing these metaphors because this is my last editorial, and I’m getting sappy.
I first joined The Cascade in summer 2011, after a year away from school and a bad break-up. I was pretty lost. I think most third-year students are pretty lost. Sometimes you get the kind of lost where you want to curl up into a compact ball and do nothing but read novels and eat cake.
The Cascade was my cake.
Pretty soon I wasn’t lost any more.
One summer a cat showed up on my deck, and I fed it. Then it didn’t leave.
The Cascade is kind of like that. You feed it once, and you’re stuck with it forever.
My first article argued that StarCraft II is, in fact, a sport. It was lame, it was kind of funny, and it was kind of enjoyable.
But writing for The Cascade is like petting a cat; you can’t really classify it as addicting, but one does not simply stop petting a cat.
And The Cascade is the cute kind of cat.
I used to be the stoic sort of person who could cut an onion without crying. I always wondered: were my eyes less susceptible? Did my bad posture mean I leaned just enough out of the way to avoid the fumes?
But as I grew up, I honed my kitchen knife skills. I learned to dice vegetables instead of chopping any which way, and I started crying when I chopped onions.
Sometimes it’s all in the way you cut it. The same vegetable can be in rough pieces or in perfect, tiny squares. It’s what you make of it. Sometimes you cry all over the kitchen, but in the end the casserole is pretty good, or at least filling. Maybe you would rather have sushi, or ice cream, but at the end of the day you have casserole and that, as they say, is that.
Nothing wrong with casserole, after all.
In my first editorial, I called The Cascade a “beautiful, unwieldy beast.” I called it “a curious mix of life-draining and inspiring work.”
My first editorial ran with a picture of a captain’s hat because I called The Cascade a ship, which may be the best description I can give it. I got on one day, and I didn’t get off. We weathered storms and came out in one piece. Now that I’ve emerged on deck, it’s clear that I started in one place, and now I’m another. I’ve been transported. I’m not quite sure where I am, to be honest. I still have my sea legs. It’s going to be odd to be on land again.
It has carried me so far and so safely, but now it’s time for me to return the favour – no matter what I do, I will carry The Cascade with me for the rest of my life.
It’s a cake; it’s a cat; it’s a casserole; it’s a ship.
The Cascade is a lot of things.
It’s given me (and so many other students) a place to express our opinions, examine our student politicians, talk about the issues — and triumphs — in our community. On the bad days, I questioned what we were capable of accomplishing — because after all, we’re just a stupid student newspaper.
On the good days, though, I remember that it’s not just a stupid student newspaper: it’s my stupid student newspaper.
I hope you recognize it’s your stupid student newspaper too, because it can also be a whole lot more than that.