Arts Vanity: Don't Stop Believin'—A Shoot Paper for Arts Calendar Exec


At the end of each year, members of The Crimson submit their candidacy for executive positions in a process called the Turkey Shoot. Attached is one proposal for an arts associate editorial position, somehow lost during this year’s shoot but now found.

The Calendar’s Overture

2016 brought huge changes for The Harvard Crimson’s arts section. With our transition into the daily, we now reach a larger, more diverse readership. But what do these readers first see when they turn to the arts pages? Page 3: a carefully designed Arts banner, a well-written feature and equally well-photographed image, and our section’s ugly duckling—the arts calendar. It’s time for a revival. It’s time to overhaul the arts cal.

Who am I? I’m [Harvard ID Redacted]


Since joining The Crimson exactly 1,038 days ago, I have compiled the arts cal two times—in other words, 0.192678227 percent of my time with 14p has been with the calendar. With my clear adeptness at mathematics and equally clear devotion to the arts cal, I would bring incredible experience to the calendar exec role.

Ch-ch-ch-ch-changes (Turn and face the cal)

The arts cal has used the same format and system since the beginning of Arts itself. While I understand huge change will face resistance, I propose several actionable measures that will make the transition smoother:

    Workflow: Currently, an arts exec writes the arts cal during production. As a means of increasing efficiency, Arts Chair-elect Joseph Thomas Westbrook ’18 has suggested completing the calendar a week earlier, but I believe we can do better. I would finish every week’s calendar before the semester begins. Time during production nights will be better spent with me painting execs’ nails and distracting others. Efficiency has its costs.
    Multimedia: The current format of the arts calendar consists of lines of text with some bolded letters as an attempt at visual variety. What would make the calendar more eye-catching? Include photos! Even better: Replace all words with photos. Make the arts calendar a photo essay.
    Relevance: The Harvard Crimson is, as its name implies, a newspaper for Harvard affiliates. Our event listings must be catered to our Harvard readers. While the change in workflow will ensure more thoughtfully chosen content, let’s go further and prohibit listing any organization without the word ‘Harvard.’ Radcliffe Pitches requests us to pub their upcoming jam? The answer’s no. Radcliffe Choral Society want us to spread the word about their charity concert? That’s a negative. Does this create a potential exclusionary issue which this high-key feminist shooter should find problematic? Maybe.
    Online: The mantra of 14p these days is “Online first,” which, thanks to its heavy ambiguity, I take to mean a shift from the print and human to the web-based and technological. Not only should we publish the calendar online every week, but also we should write code to make curating events on campus easier. Make a bot to generate every calendar for us at each semester’s beginning. Ensure that the role of calendar exec becomes completely irrelevant. Replace all Crimeds—present and future—with automated machines. Efficiency has its costs.

Respectfully submitted,
Ha D.H. Le

Dropdown: Charger exec

(499.9999999999 words)

—Ha D.H. Le is the outgoing Arts Chair and prospective incoming Calendar exec. She is planning to spend her retirement from The Crimson moored off the coast of Los Angeles with her Best Friend Victoria Lin, whose nails she plans to paint every day.