Fun in the Time of Tolerance

How to throw a killer party in 2015.

Hey everyone! You’re getting this email because I want you in my suite this weekend. I’ve admittedly invited a lot of you, which might mean our chip and pretzel rations will be depleted faster, but it’s important to me that you each understand how much I value your friendship. Please refer to the list of those cc’d, and if you have any unresolved tiffs with those listed, promptly resolve them. Anyway, we’re calling this a “pre-game,” but by no means feel pressured to have plans. . . Read more
Austin Bryniarski
Everyday Evil

Can a new network of radical vegans change the mainstream liberal agenda?

The funeral was supposed to begin at 7:30 p.m., but the mourners didn’t show up until closer to 8. They came dressed all in black except for their sneakers. None of them had been to this kind of funeral before, and they were nervous. “I haven’t memorized my speech,” a young woman named Bianca told me. The procession was going to begin at the New Haven Green. Bianca shuffled around the flagpole, trying to get warm. With nightfall, the mist had turned to cold pinpricks. . . Read more
Eric Boodman
American Spirit on the Housatonic

What does it take for a Native American tribe to be acknowledged by the U.S. government?

The Schaghticoke tribe is praying for the long-lost bones of its ancestors. Standing on the Connecticut reservation their families once called home, members clasp one another’s cold hands. They turn their backs on the neighboring town of Kent and on the massive vans parked like sleeping giants on the other end of the plateau. They wait outside the wooden fence of the reservation’s small cemetery, bordered by spindly birch trees and the Housatonic River. It is early November, and they have gathered from across the. . . Read more
Maya Averbuch
Investing in Writers

The benefactors behind Yale’s most popular creative writing courses.

One evening last November, I sat next to Anne Fadiman, sipping red wine and enjoying Mory’s famous Baker’s Soup, as Anne told our table of current and former students her famous “car service story.” When she first came to Yale to give a Master’s Tea, she invited a Yale graduate to travel with her in the hour-and-a-half ride back to her home in Whately, Massachusetts, in order to discuss the craft of editing. Paul Francis ’77, sponsor of the Francis Writer-in-Residence Program, sat at a. . . Read more
Grace Hirshorn
The Yarn Bombers

A writer searches for radical knitting activists.

The yarn hung in purple skeins from the ceilings of small tents. It was wrapped into rainbow spirals inside plastic boxes, and interwoven with bright green feathers and small iridescent sequins. Yarn stared up at me from book covers, from brochures, from multicolored quilts stretched over tables, and from the hands of women clicking knitting needles. On a Saturday in October, I was at Stitches East, an annual “fiber experience” for knitters, crocheters, spinners, and dyers. The three-day-long event boasted a marketplace, a fashion show,. . . Read more
Ariel Katz
Paint the Streets

New Haven finds simple solutions to unfriendly roads.

On the morning of Sunday, May 1, 2011, residents of the Audubon district awoke to find a bold new crosswalk at the intersection of Whitney Avenue and Audubon Street. Spray-painted and slightly crooked, the rogue act made headlines around town. Opinions differed—officials said the sight lines weren’t clear enough for a crosswalk, business owners liked that it made it easier for people to get to their stores, and some just thought it looked a little funny. Useful or not, the crosswalk was illegal and officials had. . . Read more
Jillian Kravatz
Nobody’s Home

In rural Connecticut, a ghost town’s Victorian houses begin to crumble.

One plowed road cuts through the center of Johnsonville, Connecticut, and snow is piled high on either side. Beyond the road’s ragged edges, about twenty Victorian houses stand empty. They’re scattered in this plot of land as if airdropped, randomly spaced and facing different directions, like pigeons that landed in a snow bank. The paint on their walls is chipped and fading, save for a few remaining patches of jaunty red or turquoise. Some of their windows are broken but many are intact. One has. . . Read more
Ruby Bilger
It’s Showtime!

New Haven revives a historic music hall.

“This is our comeback,” said Andy Wolf. It was January 14, 2015, and the College Street Music Hall had big news to share. The theatre, after being shut down for thirteen years, announced plans to reopen in May. Formerly known as the Palace, and then as the Roger Sherman, it had shut down in 2002 after nearly eighty years at the center of New Haven’s cultural scene. Even though it passed almost immediately into the hands of the New Haven Center for the Performing Arts,. . . Read more
Nate Steinberg