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I do not think I am the only one wondering what lurks behind the bangs. What strange monsters could be prowling behind that 5’ 3’’ façade? There’s nothing really remarkable about Features Columnist Jenny Tang ’12 – at first sight, at least – aside from a thick layer of bangs that seems to obscure a suspiciously brainy part of the head. Well, I am not judging.
Anyway, it turns out that Jenny is, well, special – I know from personal experience.
I am a member of the intensely humanitarian Lives Switching Lives club, and according to club operations, I shall complete my community service requirement through a most charitable interchanging of lives. It is logically deduced and scientifically proven that living vicariously through one another facilitates the mutual development of empathy. To make the most of this truth, we decided to coordinate an exchange of lives and lifestyles between those of us who are selfish, over privileged, and way too comfortable and those who are, well, not. As it turns out, I ranked near the bottom in terms of privilege and Jenny at the top. And, to pay off forty hours of community service arrears, I had the honor of trading lives with the idiosyncratic Jenny Tang.
In these forty hours, I experienced the most fortunate life I have ever imagined. In these forty hours, I managed to stay conscious for a total of about twenty hours, the remaining of which were spent performing many epochal tasks, including swallowing seven microphones in front of a video camera, posing for thirteen pictures during a radio show, and generally, acting beyond the sight of sanity.
I spent half of my time taking intermittent naps at abnormal times and over irregular intervals. I can say for sure I got plenty of rest, and would have perceived myself awakening to a greater presence of mind, but for some ensuing incidents that set me in suspiciously hyper spirits. I found myself, i.e. Jenny, hosting the radio show with the usual quirky commentary, when suddenly I began entertaining myself by exposing my side visage, then stuffing the microphone down the other side behind the silhouette of my agape mouth. This act would have served a fine, though hackneyed, optical illusion, except for the fact that I – or shall I say Jenny – was not very coordinated, so I would always miss my mouth by a smidge, resulting in the microphone’s gradual disappearance down the nose, as well as half of the mouth. In any case, it provided an exhilarating experience for me and I suppose, Jenny, who evidently appears to possess more mental blessings than I.
I had never found myself more photogenic than in those forty hours of paradise. I posed whilst napping, eating, and regularly so throughout the day; in fact, I found myself most photogenic while sleeping. I was also videotaped while shooting – or, I must confess, flailing – my Nerf gun with flamboyant flair. And then, after a flurry of a dozen more camera flashes, I returned to slandering Pottermore and writing with my Big Pen.
So concluded my forty hours of bliss. I, personally, can hardly muster that peerless mental dexterity that dwells behind the bangs. What a glimpse into the élan of upper class life! I can only anticipate Jenny’s poverse description of her forty-hour experience with my humble origins and mental mediocrity!
-Tina Liu ’13