My roommate walks in and slams the door behind him before giving me a cold stare. This is followed by an icy, dangerously low pitched, “I’ve been waiting to talk to you.” For most people this sentence is the first line down a slippery slope that ends with roommate reassignment forms at the Office of Residential life. For me however, it is the indicator that I am about to experience the passionate rant.
The passionate rant (rant of passion, passionus rantorum,)is a phenomenon I have come across a lot at Tufts. It occurs when a jumbo becomes hyper stimulated to talk about something very meaningful to them for any period ranging between five minutes to a few hours - with very little space for breaths in between. They can be a discussion of any infinite range of topics and really show you how deeply vested Tufts people are in what they do. This might sound very abstract, so maybe we could use some examples.
To go back to my roommate, a good example is when he goes on (or is it off?) about urban planning. Major signs of this specific passion rant are short sentences and largely comparative language. Something like “you see, you can barely tell where downtown Boston is (I have to agree with him on this)….. The way the grocery stores just space out and clump together… no grid absolutely no grid in this city it’s a crime, it really is. Cities should be planned not just fan out people.”
Or a friend from debate on the federal government’s expenditure on cheese. This rant is usually very academic, with largely specialized jargon and an analysis of fundamental ideas. Example, “Twenty million dollars in surplus cheese. America is literally drowning, in cheese. It’s a disaster really. They have to subsidize cheese, teach people how to put cheese in more food. It has literally become civic duty for people to eat more cheese."
Because I not only respect but revere passion, I make sure to deeply appreciate each and every passionate rant. I will sit down and listen intently as friends go on and on and I feel that strong conviction for their beliefs just shine through their eyes. There is an energy that comes from these - some quirky photons that drift passionately from all over campus to the Academic quad, the Rez quad, even downhill. This passion is an energy that keeps Tufts buzzing. It is a light that shines through every department, club and group at Tufts.
All hail the passionate rant.
pc: Reggae Marathon