By Chandler Ryd
An essay is a room. In writing, the author chooses words with which to furnish it before inviting you all, the readers, to enter. Nouns are the chairs and couches where you can rest; verbs are the tables—hard surfaces—that allow you to lean forward and work; metaphors are well-placed lamps and windows, illuminating and casting contrast. The sum total, the atmosphere of the room, is the idea the author seeks to convey, and he should be hospitable, attentive to your experience. A good author is a kind host and a good reader a gracious guest.
A magazine, then, is a house. In this issue, we have built from the ground up a collection of rooms, and we invite Hillsdale to enter and enjoy. But first, I’d like to thank Elena Creed for providing the image on our cover—the front door, so to speak—that inspired me to take up this metaphor in the first place.
The issue begins in the living room with a guide to award-season films that lets students know which ones might be worth a few hours on a Friday night. Andrew Egger then revisits the popular children’s novels, Series of Unfortunate Events, after the release of Netflix’s TV adaptation. In the kitchen, Katie Davenport takes up the perennial issue of the benefits and problems of technological advancement while Taylor Kemmeter writes about the way the college’s swing club addresses the perennial issues of Hillsdale students. Heading to the back porch, after spending a semester on a tight budget while interning in DC, Mackenzi Dickhudt invites us to consider our spending habits in light of our friendships. Emily Lehman writes about laughter and the importance of a good sense of humor. Upstairs, Mark Naida takes the issue in a more somber direction by meditating on the relationship—and distance—between the artist and his audience. Lara Forsythe, by the fire, contemplates the different shades of meaning that help us to understand a text, using Shusako Endo’s novel, Silence, as a test-case. Dietrich Balsbaugh brings the issue to a fitting close by relating our college’s motto, virtus tentamine gaudet, to the Christian ethos of praising God during difficulty.