Friday, November 14, 2008

Tightening Our Belts

Miss Grimke: I’m so excited about the big dinner in December at Elmwood. Thanks so much for putting me on the task force!

DGF: We all know of the extraordinary turbulence still roiling the world’s financial markets and the broader economy.

Miss Grimke: I am preparing vast amounts of congealed salad, using locally harvested sustainable canned fruits and tiny marshmellows and generic gelatin.

DGF: The downturn is widely seen as the most serious in decades, and each day’s headlines remind us that heightened volatility and persisting uncertainty have become our new economic reality.

Miss Grimke: Cheese balls provide a really fun, festive touch, and they are also economical, if you shop at Trader Joe’s for the cheese.

DGF: For all the challenges such circumstances present, we are fortunate to be part of an institution remarkable for its resilience.

Miss Grimke: Of course I’ll make them myself, using an old family recipe that was once printed in the Charleston News and Courier!

DGF: Over centuries, Harvard has weathered many storms and sustained its strength through difficult times. We have done so by staying true to our academic values and our long-term ambitions, by carefully stewarding our resources and thoughtfully adapting to change. We will do so again.

Miss Grimke: Do you think we can afford to double the amount of pecans in the pies? I know that makes them so much better than ordinary. I’d hate to skimp on pecans!

DGF: But we must recognize that Harvard is not invulnerable to the seismic financial shocks in the larger world.

Miss Grimke: Okay, I guess that means we’ll be rolling in squash and pumpkin pies. Sustainable, locally grown squash and pumpkin.

DGF: Our own economic landscape has been significantly altered. We will need to plan and act in ways that reflect that reality, to assure that we continue to advance our priorities for teaching, research, and service.

Miss Grimke: But at the expense of pecan pies, I see! Indeed we have fallen on hard hard times.

1 comment:

Rhea said...

Having worked for Harvard for over 10 years, but before the advent of Ms. Faust, I must say that Harvard will indeed survive this economic downturn. It's survived every depression and recession of the last 350 years.