All posts by Cloyne House President

We Did It! + Summer Goodbye

Hi Cloyne!

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Spring 2018 was a pleasure. Being your Prez was very fulfilling–and I’m happy to say that when I come back in the fall, I will return in the position!

That feels nice, knowing I get to continue to chill with my friends AND smash that democratic like next semester. In the summer, Lana and Rosa will Co-Prez (and I’m sure they will be great).

Just wanted to reflect on some amazing things we did this semester!

We:

  • had a huge welcome week for new members
  • had a bunch of awesome study parties
  • David Peterson (the language creator from Game of Thrones and many more things) came and talked with us!
  • So did John Denero,  UCB’s resident great CS Prof.
  • Threw a Quinceañera themed Special Dinner
  • Ate a LOT of food
  • Took a LOT of tests
  • Made homemade lanterns
  • Played Sardines (and got lost in our big, big house)

and we did more I can’t exactly remember.

A lot of members in the house don’t actually know we have this page, outside of knowing it holds our Bylaws and House Policies. A lot of people that live here don’t exactly know (or may not care) that when you Google Cloyne, this is what pops up–and whether or not people read these posts, they exist for people to learn more about the house–to want to live here. But I love posting on here anyway. For me, the first thing I did when I learned I got into Cal was look at where I might live. Everyone knows housing is few and far between, and I had no idea that the Coops were a thing–and when I found out, Cloyne was the first name I saw, and so the first one I Googled. And when this blog came up, and the last post was about Rice and Beans, it was in a weird way welcoming. Like, this place feels lived in even over the internet.

And so living here this last year felt homey, this last semester especially.

This last semester, we cooked probably our weight in rice and beans. The cooking was divine, the music in the kitchen booming every beautiful day from 7 am to 10 pm. The dancing and stirring.

We did a lot this semester, and I would like to think we did a lot as a Manager Team, but most of all I am proud that what this did this semester was commune together. We lived together. We lived! We made it to the end of the semester! Another one successful purely because here we are. And I am proud to have done this with and through this house and community.

A lot of Clones (my friends) have just graduated; today was General Commencement. Because I am going home for the summer, though I am promising to come visit before August, many of these amazing people I am sadly sure I will never see again. So while this post is to commemorate how much fun we had and what we have done and what we have built and experienced, this is also about saying goodbye to the Clones that are leaving.

Goodbye, and thank you. You did it, and I’m so happy and proud for you, and to know you, and I wish you well. May the summer be one of joy (internships, jobs, travel, leisure, swimming, melon, sunbathing, concerts, NSF parties, camping, reading, running, loving, leaving, coming back).

Signing off (but only for so long),

Isabel 

Howdy, Cloyne President

“Howdy, Cloyne President” is what you see in the top right corner of the screen in WordPress when it’s time to make a new post– and it’s time to make a new post.

Hi. Hello. Back again.

Going to address the elephant in the blog; this spring has sped by. Wow, has time flown. And what a word, flown. F l o w n. Flow-n. Like that a little better.

I have been thinking about time recently, and space, too. Particularly time and space at they relate to place.

This place means a lot to me. At this time last year, it meant nothing to me at all. I hadn’t even applied. So much happens in a year!

When I first arrived at Cal, I was astonished not just by the busyness of the campus or the resume worship but the sidewalks. This is because I come from a tiny southern-fried blip of NorCal, where we have none. You have to drive two towns down for a downtown; where I’m from there are no corner stores because there are no corners. We drive to the Safeway and drive home, mostly. We’re in the woods, mostly. (This is why I LOVE that the electronic welcome on this WordPress is howdy. It feels homey.)  Now I walk on sidewalks all the time. Now I live in the Bay Area. So much has happened in a year.

So, time and space; but how do they relate to place? Time has flown by this past year, especially this semester, and the place where I live is different from my hometown. The intersection of those things is this House. This Coop. Cloyne.

I want to talk about “third places.”  There is an idea, made and made popular by urban sociologist Ray Oldenburg, that there are three types of spaces. To quote this PBS article, https://www.pps.org/article/roldenburg  “Oldenburg identifies “third places” as the public places on neutral ground where people can gather and interact. In contrast to first places (home) and second places (work), third places allow people to put aside their concerns and simply enjoy the company and conversation around them. Third places “host the regular, voluntary, informal, and happily anticipated gatherings of individuals beyond the realms of home and work.” Oldenburg explains that beer gardens, main streets, pubs, cafés, coffeehouses, post offices, and other third places are the heart of a community’s social vitality. Providing the foundation for a functioning democracy, these spaces promote social equity by leveling the status of guests, providing a setting for grassroots politics, creating habits of public association, and offering psychological support to individuals and communities.

I think the beauty of Cloyne, for me, is that we occupy the space of being all three spaces at once. 

We are home–for us Clones, we sleep, eat, commune, shower, sing, cry, laugh until we cry, salsa dance here. We argue and tease and negotiate and self govern. We are an entity of community, and that community is a relationship that makes this house a home. Maybe it’s my Dutch grandma whispering in my ear, but I try and find the hygge in everything–and it’s easy to find it here.

We are work–our theme IS academia. We are all required to be full time students. We have study rooms, and obligations, and it feels like we are working too much at any given time. Here we are, expected to do workshift after school from 9-6:30. We are at work because we make things, we work at things. We problem solve, we innovate, we hack. It’s part of our description on this Weblog that we create. But this takes work, and so here we are with quiet hours, and study rooms.

But we are also something extra.

I can’t tell you how many times I have come down to the kitchen to get water and Matthew Verish has just pulled out the first tray of warm peanut butter cookies, forked so they look like dabloons, oily and gooey and perfect. And even before he sends out the email, maybe it is the smell, but so many of us seem pulled together into the pre-kitchen by something shared. We all value the same things. I swear, open a bakery, goddamn it.

We all came to this house for different reasons. And those reasons are important. But more than anything I am just so glad we’re all here. That we are all together, in this house, the actual togetherness feels like a third place some days. Third places, Oldenburg argues, are “what suburbia cries for…[they are] the means for people to gather easily, inexpensively, regularly, and pleasurably — a ‘place on the corner,’ real life alternatives to television, easy escapes from the cabin fever of marriage and family life that do not necessitate getting into an automobile.” This is the Coop system, but so much it feels is this house. We are on the corner, after all.

I don’t know exactly why I’m writing this, but April is such a whirlwind month. We have our big Academic Event. We have Elections. We have finals coming up. We have the last two Councils. Special Dinner (more on that later!) is right around the corner, as is summer.  I think contextualizing the experiences I am going through, the gratitude I am feeling to BE in this time and space, this place, with y’all, my crew, my friends, my family, is helping me prepare for a summer away from here, in a time where a lot of Clones, as they always do in the spring, graduate and leave. So actually I know exactly why I’m posting this. And it’s because I am so happy, and I learned a new thing, and I hope you like it too.

Thanks for checking us out, or being part of the journey here. I knowwwww it’s cheesy to end with a quote but I really like you all, so let’s be honest here. I love cheese.

“We’re all just walking each other home” — Ram Dass

Isabel

Time Jump

Hey y’all!

We haven’t posted on this as a house for about a year and a half–but I’m going to change that!
I personally don’t know much about this website, the web, or pretty much technology at all. But I have some great people by my side who are helping me learn as I go–and grow.
So I think it’d be cool if we started using this platform again, so we can show the outside world how truly cooperative we are. This house is special in a way I cannot altogether describe.

Welcome home.

Isabel, Cloyne Prez spring 18,