By the Unicorner Editorial Board
The city became eerily silent. The lights in businesses flickered out, one after another. The favorite coffee house, dark. The favorite obiady domowe, dark. The favorite pizza place, one or two lone figures in a semi-lit space, doors locked. Koronawirus… Life as we knew it, with its usual gripes and complaints and bright spots and laughter breaking out in between, now so distant, a fragile beauty we may never again take for granted. And, the gripping pictures thrown at us from Italy, from Spain, coffins, more coffins, anguished faces in hospitals, anxious pleas for help, an elderly person dying alone. The face masks, the face masks. Something was out there, attacking. And, then word got out, an IT technician at Społeczna Akademia Nauk has the virus. That something was hitting a little closer.
Student life in Łódź, as we all know, has been turned upside down. There were reports of some students feeling abandoned, e-mails not being answered. There were reports of mass confusion, some instructors not knowing what to do, or waiting to be told what to do. There was some social media, with suggestions that things have been moving online in a seemingly smooth transition, and often it wasn’t exactly true. Students couldn’t figure out why some instructors were proceeding online, and some weren’t. Of course, no one was at fault. Education everywhere has been thrown into an entirely new landscape overnight, with little preparation, little guidance. For far too many of us, something called Zoom was associated with speeding cars, not computer screens. An entirely new reality has been thrown at everyone. We’re learning to deal with it on the fly.
What now seems far distant in a cherished past, a group of us last fall began to plan the start of a student magazine. Student magazines are part of university life, an honored tradition, far and wide. While some student magazines go back decades, we were starting from zero, not always sure of ourselves, or what shape our magazine might take, or should take. But, no doubt, many great enterprises start this way. What we do know is this: Łódź is a fantastic university town, and with some 50,000-plus students at various institutions of higher education, the student community here deserves some kind of central voice, a voice that would be trustworthy, reliable, responsible, put out by students. We are fully independent. This is our baby, your baby. We are still very much in an embryonic stage, and probably not as ready as we would like to be, but out of a sense of mission and responsibility to serve our community at this time of crisis, we decided we need to push forward and get started.
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