April 27, 2023
This past year, the Life section underwent great change. In the spring, we said goodbye to Life Editor Josie Scratchard, who moved on to greener pastures and became the Old Gold & Black’s Copy Chief. This was when James Watson came aboard. Watson brings a sort of Criterion Channel vibe to the Life section that Marvel fans don’t exactly appreciate. We also added some new staff writers to the fold, such as Prarthna Batra, Tabitha Cahan, Caroline Mederos and Emma Shuford, who contributed some amazing articles and helped the Life section flourish this year.
In other news, the Life section continued its Sisyphean quest to top Emily Bebeneck’s totemic cultural document, “Analyzing the personalities of the Madagascar penguins,” which remains one of the most viewed articles on the Old Gold & Black website. Many tried, many failed but a few brave creatives came inspiringly close.
In her debut article, “Dark side of the boat,” Cahan captured the attention of the Wake Forest music aficionado community and dazzled them with her vast breath of musical knowledge. She then followed this up with a wave-making piece, claiming heretically that Ice Spice is our generation’s Princess Diana. Yikes. Wyla Solsbery contributed a fantastic article on practicing subversive fashion, which felt uniquely relevant to a campus like Wake Forest’s. Cooper Sullivan provided some much-needed laughs with his satirical article, “I’m a WFU student who hates my study abroad.” Finally, Prarthna Batra gave us our first Life Through the Lens of the academic year, as she reflected on the challenges of navigating an American university after growing up in New Delhi. We also had a crossword in a later print edition that everyone loved and definitely wasn’t filler. Staff writer Ally Werstler began writing with us in the fall and quickly became our most reliable film critic (even if she gave “Puss in Boots: The Last Wish” and “The Fabelmans” the same score). We can’t wait to see how she tackles the cultural disruption that will be the “Barbie” movie later this summer.
The Life section also struck gold, networking with Matador records and landing an interview with indie rocker Snail Mail and her touring partners, Water From Your Eyes! We’re hoping this is the start of a long series of artist interviews, making the Old Gold & Black Life section a rite of passage for indie music up-and-comers.
The Life section is looking to evolve and grow in the next year. Hopefully emerging from the icy caves of irony and jest and becoming more engaged with Wake Forest’s thriving arts community, seeking out their stories and work. But rest assured, no matter how our little slice of Old Gold & Black heaven changes, one thing will always be for sure: Ice Spice is our generation’s Princess Diana.