A Guide to Athens

By: Emmett Baumgarten, Contributor

Last spring, I had the pleasure to spend a semester abroad in Athens, Greece. It was an opportunity I did not dare forgo — to study in one of the ancient world’s greatest hearths of knowledge (even as it declined from bustling city to famed college town under Roman rule) is a dream to any Classicist, such as myself. I envisioned a city littered with ancient sites and charm; as Rome was to Italy, so too was Athens to Greece in my mind. Then I flew in. From on high I gazed down not on the picturesque ruins and general charm I had envisioned, but upon a homogenous, white mass, discolored by the daily cigarette smoke of its millions of inhabitants. A surge of disillusionment dragged me down like Charybdis was said to do to many fated ships. The cab from the airport provided little relief: he tried to charge us double and then drove with that patently bad and fear inducing driving Mediterranean cabs are known for. The drive was not lacking for excitement, however, as it provided a crash course on Greek insults and rude gestures. Were I to stop here, Athens might seem a terrible destination. I will assure you my disillusionment was not long-winded. A quick turnaround began as I first moved into my apartment, which, given the homogeneity of Athens, is quite similar to every apartment there. Two features stand out and constitute points of pride among the Greeks. The first is the thick, marble countertop in the kitchen. Modern Athenians seize every opportunity to connect themselves with their ancient counterparts and the land around them; the presence of Pentelic marble, with which the Athenians constructed all their major landmarks, in the home on a surface interacted with daily amply satisfies this desire. Second, an open-air balcony with a perilously short rail meant “not to protect you from falling” but rather to “remind you that you can fall,” as my Greek instructor, Angeliki, would say. This, more so even than the marble counter, is the pride and joy of an Athenian home. This is where you display your gracious hospitality — a custom rooted as far back as the bronze age — this is where you take back souvlaki to eat in the open air as far away from the din of the city as you can get from within, this is where you enjoy late nights with a glass, or few, of wine and good company. From there on, I met the people, indulged in the food night and night again, and visited those ancient sites engulfed by the concrete jungle. It was all superb; though, for the sake of brevity, which I am already endangering, I will spare you the details of my experiences and, instead, provide you with advice so you can rejoice in Athens the same.

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Amazon’s “The Grand Tour” Combines Entertainment and Humor in New Series

By: Aidan Clarke, Staff Writer

Competing with Netflix and Hulu, Amazon knew from the beginning that its streaming service would need big names and excellent content. To achieve both of those goals, in 2015, Amazon brought in Jeremy Clarkson, James May and Richard Hammond, along with their favored producer, Andy Wilman. Together, this group had turned the BBC’s middling “Top Gear” into the most successful car show of all time. Now, Amazon gave them a bigger budget and a clean slate to shape their new show “The Grand Tour” as they saw fit.

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Maddie De Pree is a Junior, Vol. 12: Whoa, I’m Almost A Senior

By: Maddie De Pree, Columnist

Last night, I went downtown with my friend, Sarah, to grab some dinner. As we walked around, I remembered how beautiful Greenville is in the springtime. Everyone, it seemed, had come out to celebrate the arrival of warm weather: kids were skipping, couples laughing, street musicians playing and end-of-the-worlders were giving their bizzare sermons. Sarah and I ran into several groups of high schoolers dressed for prom, the girls’ running down the sidewalks barefooted, high heels dangling loosely from their fingers as their dates trailed behind.

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Maddie De Pree is a Junior, Vol. 12: I Guess I Use Social Media Now

By: Maddie De Pree, Columnist

Those closest to me know that I’ve never been a big fan of social media. I’ve always had a Facebook, but when I arrived at Furman, I didn’t have Instagram, Snapchat or Twitter. I just wasn’t interested in keeping up with all that. A “social media presence” has always been an unappealing concept. Twitter seems self-indulgent, and Instagram smacks of narcissism and vacuity. Social media generally strikes me as a huge waste of time.

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Furman JSA Partners With Greenville Jewish Film Festival

Feb. 28, Furman University’s Jewish Student Association (JSA) celebrated its partnership with the Greenville Jewish Film Festival with a CLP to kick off the first day of the festival. This partnership and CLP were parts of JSA’s efforts to increase its visibility on campus and in the Greenville community.

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“Conversations With a Killer” Netflix Series Takes on the Story of Ted Bundy

By Aidan Clarke, Staff Writer

Mark Twain once quipped that truth is stranger than fiction, and perhaps this is part of the appeal of true crime documentary series like Netflix’s “Conversations with a Killer: The Ted Bundy Tapes.” Certainly, the tales of Agatha Christie and the adventures of Sherlock Holmes have lived on far past their own times, but the reality, brutality and sheer depravity of killers like Bundy are able to capture the human imagination unlike any fictional story

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Professional Photographer Lara Rossignol Visits Furman for CLP and Lecture

By: Bella Metts, Staff Writer

Professional photographer Lara Rossignol gave a lecture Friday, Feb. 22 in the Roe Art Building Lecture Hall. The lecture hall was packed full with students sitting on the floor for the entirety of Rossignol’s lecture. Rossignol began her photography career after her mother won a Hawkeye Auto camera in a bridge game. Rossignol’s first passion was actually dancing, a pastime which took up the vast majority of her adolescence.

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Furman Theatre’s “The Diviners” Brings the Story of a Depression-era Smalltown to Stage

By: Elizabeth Cortes, Contributor

A simple staging allows actor and story to shine in Furman Theatre’s production of “The Diviners” by Jim Leonard, Jr.  In this Depression-era tale, a sleepy Midwestern town pins its hopes on the arrival of C.C. Showers (Derek Leonard), an itinerant ex-preacher looking for work. While Showers simply wishes to help out an intellectually disabled young boy named Buddy Layman (Aaron Prince) the word of Showers’ former profession injects the townsfolk with great excitement. The devout Norma Henshaw (Anna Bowman) in particular becomes obsessed with the idea of Showers leading a revival in the town.  As Norma whips her neighbors into a frenzy, with Showers meanwhile attempting to cure Buddy’s fear of water, the show reaches its emotional climax.

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