Hallowed traditions at our nation's universities run a glorious gamut. Sometimes a campus will hold an impromptu day of song, or students will dress like the mascot, or students will dress like the mascot while enjoying an impromptu day of song, which isn't always easy when one is wearing a goat's mask or full suit of armor.
One of the most delightful school-based traditions happens at our own Caltech, when the olive trees around the campus get to bursting with olive-heavy goodness. That's when volunteers gather in Pasadena for the Caltech Olive Harvest Festival, which is happening on Friday, Nov. 5.
On the table: picking. And being together on a fine fall day. And if you think there will be immediate consuming of olives in hand, best think otherwise; they're slated to be turned into olive oil.
If you think how the olives came to be oil was an interesting story that featured the impressive smarts and various experiments of Caltech students, you would be right. If you think the bottles of oil made from the pickings of past year's have been exceedingly popular buys, so popular there have been actual lotteries, you would also be correct.
And do we love that the word "olives" possesses its own lofty caltech.edu address? That's connecting with the physical campus in a way other schools must truly aspire to. Bravo, Caltechians. Happy picking, and happy olive-oil-bottle-lottery-ticket-buying.