Anonymous asked: Do you have a girlfriend/"significant other"?
Funny you should ask. I’ll have to start at the beginning.
In the fall of my senior year, I got in the habit of studying at the Radcliffe library. Not just to eye the cheese, though I admit I liked to look. The place was quiet, nobody knew me, and the reserve books were less in demand. The day before one of my history hour exams, I still hadn’t gotten around to reading the first book on the list, an endemic Harvard disease. I ambled over to the reserve desk to get one of the tomes that would bail me out on the morrow. There were two girls working there. One a tall tennis-anyone type, the other a bespectacled mouse type. I opted for Minnie Four-Eyes.
“Do you have The Waning of the Middle Ages?”
She shot a glance up at me.
“Do you have you have your own library?” she asked.
“Listen, Harvard is allowed to use the Radcliffe library.”
“I’m not talking legality, Preppie, I’m talking about ethics. You guys have five million books. We have a few lousy thousand.”
“What makes you so sure I went to prep school?”
“You look rich and stupid,” she said, removing her glasses.
“What the hell makes you so smart?” I asked.
“I wouldn’t go for coffee with you,” she answered.
“Listen — I wouldn’t ask you.”
“That,” she replied, “is what makes you stupid.”
We went to a nearby sandwich joint.
“My name is Andy,” I said.
“First or last?” she asked.
“First,” I answered, then confessed my entire name was Andy Sturdevant.
In the pause that ensued, I gave inward thanks that she hadn’t come up with the usual distressing question: “Sturdevant, like the hall?” For it is my special albatross to be related to the guy that built Sturdevant Hall, the largest and ugliest structure in Harvard Yard, a colossal monument to my family’s money, vanity and flagrant Harvardism.
After that, she — actually, wait a second here.
You know, I’m thinking of something else.
This didn’t happen to me. I didn’t go to Harvard, now that I think about it. I am clearly confusing my own memories with the first chapter of Erich Segal’s 1970 New York Times bestseller Love Story. How embarrassing. Sorry about that.