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View From the Top: Sports fan reflects on Brandeis bucket list

By web

Section: Features

September 23, 2011

I never thought I would write for a newspaper. My friends are probably laughing right now. But I was recently asked, extremely politely, to write an article about myself (since I am such an interesting person) and my senior year experience at Brandeis. If you know me at all, you know that I am my absolute favorite thing to discuss.

I considered discussing how great my adviser is and how all of you should be Economics majors because all of the teachers are awesome. Then I remembered my politics class and my history class, which made me remember that there is no way you can go wrong by coming to Brandeis. With a million things to offer, you can use a Brandeis education to make a ton of money, make the world a better place or both. Then I thought about writing on the experience of joining a fraternity and how that made me a better person, but I realized that’s not for everyone and would rub some people in the wrong way. So finally, that led me to reflect on my time here as a whole and all of the options available to students.

When I was pledging my fraternity, I asked every brother about something they had never had the opportunity to do. Unsurprisingly, the most common answer was skydiving; even more unsurprisingly, there’s a Brandeis club for that. What I found out later was that most of their answers were activities available for Brandeis students. Realizing that, I created my Brandeis Bucket List. That list encompasses everything I’ve ever wanted to do, whether it’s available here at Brandeis or it’s something a Brandeis education will allow me to accomplish one day.

From skydiving to shooting a .50 caliber bullet, everything I could possibly think of doing was on that list. I tried kosher bacon and this stuff called Gordon’s Vodka (which I’m still convinced is rubbing alcohol). I even tried eel and subsequently got to hang out with BEMCo for a few hours. Aside from food, Hiatt helped me get a masshole’s dream job at the Red Sox division of New England Sports Network (NESN). I also tried blogging, day-trading stocks, selling real estate, and playing squash and every intramural sport Brandeis offers.

Working at NESN was an unbelievable experience. I got to attend four Sox playoff games and hang out with RemDawg (or Jerry Remy, the Sox announcer) in the booth. If you’re from Bahston, come find me to shake the hand that shook his hand. Since I was involved with the advertising side of the business, my projects were mostly focused on putting together highlight tapes that showed Pedroia going yard over the Green Monster’s Ace Ticket advertisement against Rivera—the Yankees still suck. That home run never gets old and I’ve probably watched it 500 times.

By last summer I had to get down to business and find a job that I could potentially turn into a career. One of my good friends and fraternity brothers, Jesse Klebanow ’09, started selling real estate while he was still in college and got a few kids in Phi Kappa Psi jobs at the company when he left. One of them got me a job over the summer at Think Real Estate Services in Newton Centre. We had a blast working together and made a little bit of money. If it taught me one thing, it was never to accept a job that is 100 percent commission-based, because that nice big check can quickly disappear at a bar.

Being a Brandeis Economics major, I saw an opportunity in the stock market to make some money. During the summer you may remember the Republicans deciding they wanted to approve a new budget without raising the debt ceiling. I began day-trading stocks and commodities with the income from my real estate job. It was a blast making educated guesses about how gold, silver and the bear market indexes were going to perform. Hopefully, I’ll be able to turn that into a career once my time here is over.

The most surprising discovery was finding out that I had actually learned something every day in college. See Mom? That $50,000 a year did go somewhere! From SpringFest first year listening to Asher Roth tell me not to “pass out with my shoes on” to Harry Coiner (ECON) explaining how the apples grown on the farm two miles from my house affect the banking industry in New York City, there have been a surprising amount of productive things to do here every day. So get off your bed, stop playing Call of Duty/FIFA/Madden, go out and do something you haven’t done before. It’s going to be fun and, if it’s not, you probably have a good story about it that you can use to make a new friend at a party. I’m about halfway through my list of things to do and now I can cross off getting published.

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