—Love is A Verb
Music. Cover. Listen.
—Love is A Verb
Music. Cover. Listen.
My #2012. Soirée, Winter Retreat, MJMP, Spring Retreat, UCLA P-Grad, TNT weekends, Quality Fam time. Though there were difficult times, I’m glad I can look back and remember more of the good ones; in the end, I’m just fortunate to have shared this year with everyone in my life. here’s to another good one. #thelittlethings #yearinreview
The new University of California logo.
Compared to the original seal:
(To preface, I genuinely don’t know what drove me to write this, but it is what it is. Hopefully it engages you.)
There seems to be pretty polarizing sentiments about this rebranding of our iconic institution.
On the side against the new logo, one particular Facebook response I’ve read pretty much sums it up with a familiar comparison:
Original Logo: the classic Olympic rings
New UC Logo: the London 2012 logo
To give context, the original Olympics logo is iconic, one that carries weight and significance to all those who view it. It’s simple, timeless, and reflective of a very powerful message: global unity.
The logo for the London 2012 Olympics, however, allegedly resembles Lisa Simpson giving her brother Bart fellatio. Go figure. Thankfully, there doesn’t seem to be any subtextual pervertedness in the new UC logo, but I digress.
Basically, there’s backlash from this side of the tide because the new logo seems to wipe away the grand sense of tradition that comes with the institution. In addition, there’s the feeling of oversimplifying and a failure to capture the prestige and heritage of such a respected public university. One person even likened the logo to something akin to a retail store or an online university, some with subtle derision, others not so subtly proclaiming Urban Outfitters somehow had a hand in this.
On the other hand, those who favor the logo seem to embrace the new look because it dares to look forward towards a more modern era. The simplicity of the logo also speaks to the innovation of the university as well as the state it is home to; one of the pitches in the video promoting this new logo declares the institution “Boldy Californian.” Direct to the point, it says the California university to be at.
And it does this by essentially breaking new grounds. A fair amount of detractors for the new logo say it doesn’t have the same sense of academia or higher education that one might see in an Ivy League school or some other private institution.
To them, I ask, what exactly should academia look like? I understand that there are things psychologically linked to what we consider seriously and not, but let’s think about that for a second. What kind of message is sent when we hold onto something from the past too tightly? Why is it that change, such as in rebranding, is easily scoffed at and readily diminished?
One might see the original UC seal as regal and reputable; in effect, its a coat of arms for the university, with the ever-inspiring phrase, “Let There Be Light” (sometimes, it’ll say “Fiat Lux,” the Latin words from which it is derived). But with this sense of regality and the use of Latin, a dead language often associated with and/or used by people throughout ancient history who were scholars of higher social standing in society, isn’t there a sense of self-imposed hierarchy? And by extension, a slight sense of exclusivity? As a public institution, the goal should be to make education a right for all, not just a privilege. It’s about accessibility and allowing our community and greater society to grow more tolerant, unified, responsible, and perhaps most importantly, informed and educated.
Of course, not everyone that wants to go to college is able to, for financial or personal reasons. But if we were to send a message of exclusivity, one that suggests, isn’t that limiting the purpose and potential of public education? In the same vein, why must we hold ourselves to a higher educational standard simply because of a seal? We must be able to look past what we already know and seek to understand each other and our roots, because seeing things from a strictly superficial level breeds ignorant thought. Who says we can’t redefine aesthetically what academia is?
Lastly, the University of California has spoken on the debate as follows:
…this new visual approach DOES NOT replace the historic UC systemwide seal. We love the seal. The seal will still be used in all formal systemwide communications, on diplomas, official regental and presidential communications, and other formal applications.
The two symbols serve very distinct roles. To preserve their gravitas, many of our campuses, and other universities across the country have limited use of their official seals in similar ways. It also does not replace the individual identities of each of our UC campuses. It gives our campuses and others a simple, distinct way to reference the system as a whole.
We looked at many different solutions, but felt that building off the seal was a great way to honor our history, while also pointing to our strong tradition of pioneering innovation. We’ve done considerable testing on the overall approach, and have generally heard very positive feedback.
This identity, and video, were both created by our internal team. The lead designer is a UC grad, whose parents taught in the UC system. Arriving at this solution has been a collaborative process, including people at many levels and in many functions throughout UC.
So, the thing is… in the end, NO ONE CARED if the London Olympics logo was absurd and/or atrocious. What mattered ultimately were the Olympian feats that athletes from all over the world showcased. Sure, it wasn’t necessarily representative or reflective of the unity that should come of the Games, but that’s what the original’s for; it will endure forever and won’t ever be replaced. The London logo was meant to represent a single edition of a worldwide event, and it was meant to make an aesthetic statement representative of this moment in time. This is how I view this new UC logo; it’s a statement of how we choose to see ourselves as a university at the present time. It’s an attempt to unify the institution and move onward towards the future, which promises endless possibilities and opportunities to make meaningful change in the world. That’s not to say that we should forget the original logo, however favorable it may be (in fact, the original is still being used for more official, professional documents), nor should we forget about the prestige and heritage that come with that logo. But, it’s important to move in a direction that encourages we invest in tomorrow and hopefully engage more people in the process.
Of all the things I’ve learned about myself, one thing has resonated the most, and that is I don’t like being told “you can’t do that.”
It isn’t the brand of “you can’t do that” that may come with the need to meet prerequisites or the physical ability to do olympian feats of physicality. These things, I know, are well within my abilities as a person and are my responsibility to strive for those things if they are seemingly out of my reach. It is my responsibility to tackle these challenges and, to the best of my efforts, attain this level of success, or at least approach it. I understand that if i don’t meet or exceed the expectations for this particular brand of ability, that it falls entirely on me and my own predispositions, and to either accept what is realistic or to continue pursuing it in order to better myself as an individual and on my own merits.
Instead, the “you can’t do that” of which I speak is when you fall perfectly within the confines of something you know you can do. It isn’t so much about ability as much as it is freedom and will to do so. And yet, the issue of permission seems to pervade the situation and you are forbade from doing it. As if to demonstrate a power over something else for no reason than to present a dominant position. Or to exert authority, whether misplaced or not, that ultimately diminishes the efforts and intentions of the willing party.
Of all things, I believe, this is the thing that I most gratingly despise, for to be put into such a position provokes in me a defensiveness like nothing else, a need to make known my position as a valuable and functioning member of society, whatever my role may be at the time: son, brother, friend, co-worker, other. To be made out as some null body in the complex sea of life has to be one of the most disappointing and heartwrenching feelings in the world. And to think, you’d need permission to live life.
I don’t know what it is, I just don’t know. But, it is what it is.
To say that the universe has a purpose implies that there is a destination or a goal. If that purpose exists, it certainly doesn’t have anything to do with us, the Johnny-come-latelys of the human race. Does the universe have a purpose? There’s a heck of a case to be made that it doesn’t.
But don’t despair in that view. Purpose or not, we are here, and we can discover our place in the larger extent of the cosmos even if we can’t fully describe why it’s all here.
Narrated by the great Neil deGrasse Tyson for the Templeton Foundation, and animated by Henry from MinutePhysics, this is one of the greatest things you’ll watch all week.
(via Open Culture)
Happy Thanksgiving to all!
Even if you don’t celebrate!
(I’m looking at you, door-to-door Jehovah’s Witnesses that I greeted)