A Beautiful Banana for a Belated Brunch

by Bernadette Kenney

I love alliteration and I love the letter B.   I am certain the beginning of my love for the letter B is directly related to my name and, well, it’s a nice above average letter.   My love for alliteration comes directly from the behavioral and, perhaps, genetic influence of my mother. An English teacher by training, she always instilled a love for language and expression in our daily lives. Alliteration was among one of her loves, too. I remember fondly a time when I was in junior high taking a required home economics cooking course (back in the day when girls, and only girls, were required to do this. — I know, right?). I was required to do a dessert project at home without supervision. After assessing available ingredients, I decided to bake a banana. I did so quite successfully and after taste approval from my mother, she provided the needed documentation explaining that I had capably completed my assignment.   This is what she wrote: “Bernadette baked a beautiful banana for a belated brunch.” I think of this every time I enjoy a banana, every time. When I see a picture of a banana, when I smell a banana, when I write the word banana, my mind repeats, “Bernadette baked a beautiful banana for a belated brunch.” If not for the alliteration of my most cherished letter, I might not hold bananas in such high regard. The unintended consequence of my mother’s silly moment has forever etched a positive banana experience for me.

So, you can imagine how excited I became when we settled on the CRM project name as Building Bridges. Notwithstanding the silly moments in that process (no bananas involved that I recall), my beloved B was ultimately used in an admirable alliteration of a most important university undertaking.  In line with the university’s strategic ideal to improve and expand the engagement of our constituents by breaking boundaries, the CRM initiative will broaden our reach and personalize the experience of everyone who has a connection to our universe. As we experience successes throughout the project, both small and large, it’s my hope that we automatically repeat to ourselves, “Building bridges, we’re building bridges.” As we learn from each other, as we take down our walls, as we reach out to those who matter to us, let’s identify the connections we make, the bonds we create, and the spans we cross.   Let us etch the positive. Boundaries, be damned; we are building bridges.