One in 2000: Brendan N. Reid

Dorm: Morgan East

Hometown: Shrewsbury, NJ

Hometown Hero: Greg Montgomery, NFL kicker.

Favorite Book: Gravity’s Rainbow, by Thomas Pynchon

Favorite Christmas Movie: A Christmas Story

Favorite Word: Brickface

Favorite Music Video: Radiohead’s Paranoid Android

Favorite Expletive: [whilikers!]

Favorite Five Albums: Sonic Youth, Daydream Nation; Pavement, Wowee Zowee; Tool, Anima; Smashing Pumpkins, Siamese Dream; Dead Milkmen, Big Lizard in my Backyard.

We’re approaching the end of the semester, and now seems as good a time as any for reflection. Williams College: Thumbs up or thumbs down?

Thumbs somewhere. . . in some direction. Possibly East. It’s a nice place, but I don’t like to compare it to anything else because I know I’ll probably find somewhere else that I might think is better and that would just get me down.

Complete the sentence. “I feel that Williams is preparing me well for. . .”

Aruba. Or someplace very warm. It’s kind of warm right now if you haven’t noticed.

Do you think that people at Williams are more, less, or about as in touch with current events and the goings on of the “outside world” as other people in our age group?

We know about things. I don’t know if we act on our knowledge. . .

In general, do you feel we have an involvement in and an engagement in any kind of larger community?

I think it’s an isolated community that’s kind of observing the world.

Do you think any rock group has ever benefited from the addition of a 30 piece orchestra for a monumental double live album, or do you think that such a move is invariably a symptom of a virulent decadence, irrefutable evidence that the band, like Rome, will burn (metaphorically speaking)?”

You’re talking about Portishead?

Portishead may or may not have inspired that question.

It’s odd in the context of electronic music and an attempt to do something different.

In terms of the larger picture, though, do you feel that this a bold creative move in general and just an expansion of the artistry of any particular group, or is it more that they are putting further layers of insulation between themselves and the real business of making Rock n’ Roll music?

As a Rock n’ Roller, I’ve always thought of Rock n’ Roll as being essentially simple. That’s part of its identity. The guys who are playing it are usually the guys who wrote it and it’s all their interpretation – it’s all incorporated into it. It’s not like classical music, where people do different interpretations, it’s all these guys who had a specific plan and they implement that plan and it’s all them. So I think bringing in outside influence might be kind of hazardous to [Rock n’ Roll].

Do you celebrate Christmas?

Yes I do. I celebrate like a madman.

Tell me about Christmas in your family.

I usually get up pretty early, but the gift giving doesn’t start until at least nine a.m., usually. We have stockings and stuff first – all the nice little things we might need that you never really thought of asking for.

I get candy canes, for instance.

Yeah. I get oranges and stuff. It’s nice. And then we go on, taking turns opening presents and we try to guess what’s inside. We just hold them up to our head and we’re like, “Shoes!” and. . .

And they’re shoes!

Maybe.

Or maybe it’s a Transformer. Optimus Prime, for example.

I would love to get Optimus Prime right now.

What’s the “True Meaning of Christmas?”

Well, what it’s supposed to be – the birth of Christ, if you’re into that. But I enjoy it as just another entertainment extravaganza. It’s just something to do.

So do you buy into the whole “Christmas Spirit” as a time to promote goodwill?

Yeah, but I try to do that all the time. I don’t know if I succeed.

Are these the best days of your life?

So far, yeah.

Are you making the most of them? I mean, you’re in school.

Yes I am in school. I try. I don’t know what “the most of them” is, exactly. I think I’m making the most that I can possibly make out of them. I could be wrong.

Do you believe in the pervasive “Williams – ‘real world’” dichotomy?

I think we’re a microcosm of the world, I think. Do you like that?

You down wit’ O.P.P.?

No, I’m not.