Staff Rants: Faltering Quality of Music, Avenue A and Cantor Film Center

WSN Staff

For our first Staff Rants of the semester, WSN’s very whiny team weighs in on the rapid pace of music production, Serial’s new season, Avenue A, NYU’s poor organizational skills and the rain.

On the rapid pace of music production:

Musicians are going ballistic these days. I’m not sure if I should blame the late-stage capitalist society we live in or the artists themselves, but fewer artists are taking breaks in between album cycles nowadays. You would think that the more music, the merrier. But the problem with a steady stream of records and singles is that the music starts to feel mass-produced — ironic, right — and cheap. Artists think less about lyricism and more about how to keep current fans appeased and how to increase their already ever-expanding herd of followers. We adore our favorites because they make art that resonates with us. But how likely are these haphazardly composed tracks to make a lasting impression if they weren’t made with the same dedication to essence and quality as their predecessors?

— Alejandro Villa Vásquez, Deputy Managing Editor

On Serial’s new season:

My friend texted me this morning that Serial is coming back on Thursday. The podcast’s first season — focusing on Adnan Syed, who was convicted of first-degree murder in 2000 — took my breath away when it was released two years ago. It’s the reason I originally got into podcasts. The second season, though not living up to the standard set by the first, was still fascinating. But since then, I’ve been waiting and waiting and waiting for season 3. All I have to say is that the story they’ve taken so long to pull together better leave me seriously pondering morality and the meaning of life.

— Jemima McEvoy, Editor-in-Chief

On Avenue A:

Dear Avenue A — you’re great. Seriously. You’ve got a Tompkins Square Bagels, a Westville, a great East Village vibe and even a new Target (sorry dissenters, but if you live anywhere from Eighth Street to 14th Street between Avenue B and Second Avenue, that Target is a genuine pot of pure, convenient gold, and will save your Not-in-My-Backyard-chanting butt next time you run out of toilet paper at 10 p.m.). On a sunny day, you’re full of smiling children lapping at Mister Softee cones in Tompkins Square Park, and folks who have been lounging within the park’s greenery. You’re iconic, and I love you. But you are so incredibly loud. Living on the ground floor in an Ave A apartment is like living next to a bulldozer that never turns off — not to mention the fact that every other establishment on this street is a bar, and that people tend to stand at my window and drunkenly holler at one another, forgetting that the building they are standing in front of is made up of minuscule apartment units rather than bottomless sangria pitchers. New York City is always going to be loud, but sometimes I would like to sleep through the 3 a.m. hour without being reminded of the fact that we do, in fact, live in the city that never sleeps.

— Hanna Khosravi, Deputy Opinion Editor

On Cantor Film Center:

By far the worst academic building on campus is the Cantor Film Center. Nothing about this building makes sense. Why can I bring my coffee into every building except this one? Doesn’t NYU realize my coffee is too important for me to be careless enough to spill it? And about that damned line outside the building before every class: Is this really necessary? What could possibly be the reason to justify such nonsense? My family pays NYU way too much money for me to have to wait in the rain and snow to get my education. This building is bad enough as it is — why not let me stand for five minutes in Cantor’s lobby rather than be suffocated by the first-year JUUL squad of University Place?

— Alex Domb, News Editor

On NYU classrooms:

Recall the NYU classrooms that have that giant table comprised of smaller tables in the center of the room. You can see your professor or teaching assistant and all of your peers with ease — arguably, this is a room setup conducive to discussions and student participation. And you would think that if you’re enrolled in a class taking place in such a classroom, you wouldn’t have to worry about there being enough space at the table to seat every member of the class. That makes sense, right? To NYU, it doesn’t seem to make sense. Instead, we have to fight for our seat at the table. You have to get to class at least 16 minutes early so that you can hover and call dibs on a seat as the students in the class before you are packing up their things. Otherwise, you’re essentially placed in quarantine with a few other unfortunate peers — sitting against the wall in your chair with no desk, taking notes on your lap like a pleb. This shouldn’t even happen (@NYU) but it’s better to play the game than to lose.

— Janice Lee, Opinion Editor

On umbrellas and a trend that needs to happen:

Today was a rare but special day for me — I remembered my umbrella before leaving my apartment. It wasn’t raining when I left, but the extra second it took to stuff it into my backpack was well worth it. Just as expected, the skies opened up as I was walking to class, and I was forced to open my umbrella to its obnoxiously large wingspan. Walking the narrow streets three times my normal width be reminded me of the annoyance I experience when the humidity turns to rain in New York City. Although I was bumping into almost every person and object I walked by, my shoes, jacket and backpack were still soaked when I got to class. As I was sitting at my desk shaking like a wet dog, a dangerous thought struck me: What if we were all allowed to wear those umbrella hats that Jim Carrey wore in Bruce Almighty? That would make life so much easier; my two hands would be free, I wouldn’t crash into every other umbrella-carrying citizen walking the narrow streets of New York City. Now, all we need is Bella Hadid or Kendall Jenner to start the trend so umbrella hats enter the mainstream.

— Sakshi Venkatraman, Deputy Managing Editor

Email WSN Staff at [email protected].