the things we must pursue

cabinets of wonder

This past January, on the first day of my internship at the New York Times, I went home before lunch. I can’t recall ever hearing the words, “Natalie, why don’t you take off early today?” and grimacing, but there I was, staring out a huge glass window on the 20th floor of the Times building in Times Square, watching what would become ten inches of snow settle on the ground below, and wishing it would stop so I could stay inside this building for, well, forever.

I’ve never wanted snow less. When I told my editor I was happy to work from home, she smiled, shook her head, and said, “Just get home safely. We’ll see you next week for your real first day.”

On that real first day—the overhyped “Snowpocalypse” behind us—my editor sent me downstairs after lunch to get my I.D. card. The security guards shuffled my paperwork, took my photo, and issued me my card. The three of them stood up behind the tall…

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