Chalk It Up

Author: Drew Tye Asia, C’09

As I turned the corner at 36th street and made my way down Locust Walk to Sweeten this brisk April morning, I was met by a smattering of brightly colored messages scrawled in bold strokes on the bricks. Squinting my eyes in a somewhat valiant attempt to translate the quasi-hieroglyphic text, my initially serious must-get-to-work expression immediately transformed into a cheek-pinching nostalgic grin.

The Friars were here.

It is amazing how working on this campus – the one that I fall in love with over and over again every single day – has the ability to stir up such an incredible assortment of memories from my time as a student. Every day on Locust Walk, I am reminded of a special snippet – eating lunch on College Green with a friend, lying downstairs near the massive windows of Rosengarten writing poetry on a rainy winter afternoon, burying my head in an outline as I walked to my Geology final in Meyerson B1. But today, I was fixated on a time when I took to the night with beach buckets of Crayola products and droves of dear friends to participate in one of the most coveted of Friarly traditions: Chalk the Walk.

Now, as someone who loves to create [whether it be through written or visual illustration], I wanted to treat Locust Walk like my over-sized public canvas and hoped that I could harness the brilliance of street artists who make – oh, you know – a three-dimensional stage 2 rapid – look as easy as tic-tac-toe on a sidewalk.

Well, as it turns out, I just wasn’t destined for the intricacies of water sports. Or their realistic imitations, as it were.  But I guess everyone has their own strengths, right? […right?]

Alas, I scoured my brain for any kind of inspiration. Any small suggestion of an idea that could consume me and my somewhat youthful drawing implements for the majority of the evening.

And then I looked up from my intense brainstorming. And, as though it were aglow with the glorious golden light of revelation [or a spotlight], there it was.

Call it a less-than-subtle inspiration, but it was EXACTLY what I needed. So ,I cocked my head to the side, closed one eye, put my thumb up to the statue [isn’t that what you’re supposed to do when you measure things from a distance? Not so much? Okay, great…] and sat down on the Walk to git ‘er done–as they say.

And well – after about 40 or so minutes, assistance from an architecture major [see those faint vertical lines on the edges?] and a liiiiitle hand sanitizer to “erase” my mistakes, my masterpiece was complete [random blue “S” included]. It was no stage-2 rapid, and no one was riding its crested currents atop an inflatable raft with a crocodile lurking nearby.But, despite that inconvenient truth, my chalk-tastic attempt truly expressed my adoration for Friars Senior Society – the real reason I was out there in the first place.

And I can confidently give that notion a double thumbs up [see photo above!].


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Filed under Alumni Perspective, Clubs, Drew A., Events

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