Review Staff Reflects on Athletic Experiences

Some might assume that such an intellectual group as the Review staff would not have many experiences in the sporting world. However, after conducting extensive interviews with my co-workers, I discovered that we are a staff of athletes with incredibly interesting sports stories to tell. You will notice that my name doesn’t appear in this list. That’s because I know nothing about sports.

Interviews have been edited for length and clarity.

Kushagra Kar, Editor-in-Chief:

I have done swimming my whole life. It was always something fun for me to do with my brother. In boarding school, it was a way to be a part of a team, and so swimming for me was always community-based, somewhat competitive, and about having a relationship with my brother.

Emma Benardete, Editor-in-Chief:

I do horseback riding with my dad, which is really fun. I played softball for one season in seventh grade and was truly awful at it. We lost every game but my dad was great and still drove out to all of our away games.

Nikki Keating, Managing Editor:

I played soccer and was on the same team for about 17 years of my life. I hated playing defense, and one time I was put on defense but I scored anyway and my coach got really mad at me. They never put me on defense again.

Dlisah Lapidus, Arts Editor:

I played lacrosse for two weeks in middle school and I quit, not because I didn’t love the sport — I am quite passionate about it — but I ran slower than the goalie with all of their gear on, so it was embarrassing.

Yasu Shinozaki, Arts Editor:

When I played ultimate frisbee, I never felt like I was that focused on what was happening. I enjoy doing things outside that are not organized sports more. I like to bike down to the river and enjoy the trees, flowers, and birds.

Delaney Fox, Conservatory Editor:

In high school, I was on the varsity teams for lacrosse and field hockey, and it was fun. We would always play Taylor Swift’s ‘Our Song’ on the bus ride for every single field hockey game, and I can’t get it out of my head ever.

Alexa Stevens, News Editor:

People said, “You’re really loud and really short, so the perfect sport for you is steering boats and becoming a coxswain,” so I did that. I was considering going on a track for the Olympics or doing it professionally, but there was a big culture about weight for that. It was stressful and not good for me, so I quit and switched back to tennis. I did doubles, which is low-pressure and pretty fun.

Cal Ransom, News Editor:

I was a three season athlete in high school, but I wasn’t good at anything. Swimming was my favorite sport because I really like getting in the water and just focusing on my own [things], and it was really meditative for me.

Emily Vaughan, Opinions Editor:

I was really bad at cross country, but it was an opportunity to go for very fast walks in a park near my school. Doing spin classes at Oberlin is a lot of fun — very aggressive music and an instructor yelling at you just kind of feels good, I guess.

Hanna Alwine, Opinions Editor:

On my very first hurdling race, I tripped over the hurdle and sprained my ankle, and I was out for the rest of the season. I never did hurdles again, and the thought of them still terrifies me.

 Isaac Imas, Production Manager:

I did gymnastics as a kid and I absolutely dreaded it. My favorite part was the trip there and back, because we would pass not just one, but two life-size model horses. On the way there I would watch for the horses and they were a bright spot in an otherwise really uncomfortable experience in gymnastics.

Trevor Smith, Production Editor:

When I was very young, I did t-ball and I remember the first time I was ever up at bat. I hit the ball and I started running the bases, but I ran the wrong way. I heard all the coaches and parents yelling from the sideline and I thought they were just cheering me on. So I just kept going before I made it to third base.

Kayla Kim, Sports Editor:

As a seven-year-old in soccer, I rolled down the hill and picked flowers with my friends and got in trouble for that. For swimming, we would lose every meet, and the only one we didn’t lose was against a team who only swam in a [spring-fed] pool and the bottom of it was sand. It was a bad time.

Eloise Rich, This Week Editor:

I was traumatized by a Russian swim coach in my youth. He was really scary and made all of our little child selves run laps and do push-ups. While I was a swimming prodigy, some might say, I had to stop. He used to be a coach for the USSR — what was he doing coaching ten-year-olds in Park Slope?

Molly Chapin, Layout Editor and Illustrator:

I ran cross country in my freshman year of high school. It was not my favorite, but I was carrying on my mom’s legacy because she ran cross country in high school and she really wanted me to do it. I did improve drastically. I went from a 36 minute 5k to a 28 minute 5k.

Erin Koo, Layout Editor and Photo Editor:

The closest thing I did to a sport was learning how to swim because [when I was seven] my parents forced me to. They were like, ‘You’re gonna need to learn this because one day you’re gonna be in a plane, it’s gonna crash, and you’re gonna need to know how to swim.’ What really qualifies me to work as a sports [layout] editor is last Christmas, when I shot down that paper cup on the Christmas tree with the Nerf gun.