…”Bleak College Days,” a new story by Paul LaFarge. It’s a cautionary tale of, among other things, the dangers of soliciting short stories from great writers, but also a very funny story about campus life at a certain “Bleak College” which appears to be in a city called “New Haven.”
When I became the editor of Tsurrus, two years later, I wanted to make my own legend, or at least to make a reputation for myself in Bleak’s artistic circles. I went to house parties where too many people ground their cigarettes into the carpet; I attended, and, very infrequently, hosted poetry readings at which boys compared the heavens to manmade objects, while girls compared the heavens to objects formed by nature. Did people know me? I put up wry posters, begging undergraduates not to give their writing to Tsurrus, while hoping in secret that they really wouldn’t give us their work, because it was terrible, their work, and I wanted not to read it. I dreamed of writing the whole magazine myself, under various assumed names, but didn’t dare. Was I known? Nothing that happened at those parties, or anywhere else, suggested it.