Question: What do you hope to accomplish in your four years at Harvard? Be specific.
At the end of my four years, I think it’s very important that I be known campus-wide for my falafel-cooking ability. Falafel is a vegetable ball, composed mainly of chickpeas, deep-fried to a crisp outer layer and served in pocket bread (also known as “pita”) with vegetables, hummus (also composed of chickpeas) and a light cream sauce called tahini. Falafel is of Mediterranean origin and gained wide popularity in the Middle East. To you suits up at Harvard, the small dreams of a falafel-cooking, mildly retarded high-schooler from Middle America may seem small and stupid. But to me, falafel is everything.
Question: Who has had the greatest influence on your life?
There have been a variety of influences in my life. Throughout my entire life, I have had many influences. Influence is not to be taken lightly. I can think of several people who’ve had a great influence on my life. The influence that they’ve provided has not only been meaningful, it’s been influential as well. And I like to think that I’ve taken their influence, and all its influentialness, and used it to the best of my ability to influence others like me in a positive and influential manner. Because influence is something that cannot be taken lightly. When you influence someone, you influence everything that they do. And I’ve been lucky to have some very positive influences in my life, all influential in their own way and no one more or less influential than the other.
Question: Robert Frost once said that the road less traveled made all the difference. Do you agree or disagree?
My cousin Chuck has this pickup truck, right? He loved this pickup. He used it to haul all of the peat moss and fertilizer that he needed. Chuck was a landscaper. He was responsible for some of the most beautiful lawns in our hometown (Des Moines, Iowa). Anyway, one day Chuck is going down to the Cash and Carry to pick up some seeding supplies that he needs for this ballbuster of a job out in the back, deep in the Des Moines county back plains. He doesn’t even want to do it. He wasn’t getting paid that much on account of the bet that he lost with Corky Wilson that he couldn’t fit 63 grapes in his mouth. Ol’ Corky’s got a big gullet but hell if he didn’t shove 65 grapes in there. So Chuck’s gotta go reseed his sister’s husband’s lawn because the crows came and ate all the damn grass they could get their hands on, not to mention knocking out half of the guy’s corn crop for the year. Anywho, Chucks wants to go in, do the job, and get the hell out of there because if you’re out in corn country past dark, you might get cornholed (if you know what I mean). Chuck takes the old gravel road that snakes past the quarry that nobody really uses anymore on account of the dead hobo they found there. Chuck hangs a right and it turns out that the bridge is out and Chuck, drunk that he is, drove right off the damn thing, taking that beautiful pickup with him. The road less traveled isn’t always the better option. If you care, Chuck’s doing O.K. Turns out the ravine is really only four feet deep and Chuck was more shaken up than anything.