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The Tufts Daily
Where you read it first | Sunday, December 3, 2023

Jake Ren

Jake Ren is first-year majoring in biology and film. He can be reached at

Replacement Graphic for JAKE Ren's column "Cabinet of Curiosities"

Cabinet of Curiosities: Maybe Lena

I was loitering in my dorm one afternoon when I received the following text: “Hi Amy, I’m Lena, are you still in NY? I will come to NY next month. Do you have time to go hiking together?” I tried to remember if I’d left a fake alias of Amy anywhere, and when I couldn’t, I told her she had the wrong number. The conversation should’ve ended with whatever she’d say next, probably something short, but then came two cordially punctuated sentences.

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Joe Pera, Jim Carrey in alternative standup

On Oct. 6, comedian Joe Pera released his first standup special on YouTube. He opened it with the following words: “How ‘bout this door?” He then turned to gesture at the massive black door looming behind his substantially smaller body. “Something pretty big could come through this door.” Pera just smiled warmly and stayed pointing at the door awhile. The absurd investment was never mentioned again for the rest of the special. There is not an inkling of explanation for it.

Replacement Graphic for JAKE Ren's column "Cabinet of Curiosities"

Cabinet of Curiosities: Racismos Peculiares

I grew up in China, and ironically, my first taste of the modern American flavor of racism came from a Chinese American. It has a subtle taste, with a pinch of passive aggression and the type of aftertaste that makes you unsure if what you just encountered was racism.

Graphic for Jacob Ren's column "Cabinet of Curiosities"

Cabinet of Curiosities: The basement bathroom of Houston Hall

If you turn right on the basement floor of Houston Hall, you’ll see a signless grey door with a metal plate where the handle is supposed to be. Inside, you won’t find the popular ’70s R&B disco band Earth, Wind & Fire, but rather the stalls where Houston basement residents flush, brush and shower, surrounding you left, right and center.

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