Chairs On Campus

An ode to the chairs helping us get through each day on campus.

Getting To Know Liberty Styles
Try and find yourself in the crowd!! Except you probably don't want to see what you looked like yesterday.

Leaving the Bacchanal crowd & taking to the stage

Bacchanal is now a month away and one component of the annual concert of good jams before us is now common knowledge. At the Battle of the Bands on Friday night, Liberty Styles scored itself the spot as the student opening gig for undisclosed headliner at this year’s Bacchanal.

To become tight with the newest on-campus celebrities, Music Junkie Lili Brown caught up with the band members about their recently dropped music video (embedded below), their work together, and what’s on their minds for Bacchanal and beyond.

Bwog: When did the band get together?

Liberty Styles: We all started playing shows at the end of last semester, after months of informal but pretty off-the-hook free-style jamming.

Bwog: What element do you think tap dancing adds to your music?

LS: Tapping is like any other instrument, and it can really do a lot. The real dope thing about it is that it’s sweaty and hard-hitting… you go in, all or nothing. Tap can be angsty, silly, boss, whatever. It’s a party, it’s a celebration of the body. The dancing adds contrast, too — especially when our melodic swells cut out and it’s just feet and swinging arms and a baseline.

Bwog: Is Liberty Styles looking for gigs in the city outside of Bacchanal?

LS: We are definitely looking for gigs and have been very busy performing this semester! Earlier this February we performed a set at The Shrine in Harlem, and we look forward to lots more NYC shows in the coming months.

Check out the rest of the interview and Liberty Style’s new music video here.

An App We Can Get Behind: Callouts
Real social drinking

Real social drinking

We recently met with a gang of three GS guys — Roy Hermann, Gideon Mendels, and Luca Springer — who have created an app called Callouts. It launched this past week, and they’re celebrating its release at this week’s Senior Night.

Basically, you connect to Facebook (though they promise nothing will ever be posted to your account) and, whilst drinking, you start a game with your friends. You’re prompted with a random superlative, and you have to choose one of your friends. When we met to test it out, Luca was voted for “Biggest Toe” and would at this point be forced to take a drink. The idea is that you’re able to hang out with your friends, yet still be on your phone (as we’re generally inclined to be).

Get your phones out, kids

Get your phones out, kids

Roy answered some more questions about Callouts for us:

When did you begin working on Callouts? Where did you get the idea for the app?
We began working on Callouts approximately 8 months ago, when Gideon and myself (who are friends) were at a pre-game and noticed the completely anti-social environment that filled up the room – everybody was on their phones, texting or taking selfies, instead of interacting with each other. Since we are both CS majors, we thought we can and should come up with a modern solution to this problem. We wanted to use the phone as a means to eliminate the anti-social environment that it creates, while still taking advantage of the many technological benefits it provides, all to create the fun and entertainment we expect from a night spent with friends. That’s when Callouts was born!

More information, and what it looks like after the jump.

Drop Deadline and Swipe Access Proposals Passed at CCSC
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Passing on the proposal baton

CCSC said “yes!” to two major proposals last night, on which Joe Milholland reports with equal enthusiasm. 

The Columbia College Student Council debated two proposals on Sunday night. First, they talked about a proposal to extend the CC drop deadline from 5 weeks to 7 weeks in the semester. Academic Affairs Rep Grayson Warrick argued the change was mostly for “fringe cases” of students who unexpectedly go through “high levels of stress” in the middle of the semester. Senator Marc Heinrich agreed, noting that mass droppings from classes is “not a legitimate concern” since students need to complete a certain number of classes for graduation and their major.

Part of the drop deadline proposal is that students must meet with their advisor if they drop a class after the add period. Warrick noted that CSA likes for students to come in more frequently.

The proposal passed unanimously.

The other proposal CCSC tackled was swipe access for commuter students. Council members took some time to rebut possible arguments from admins. CCSC President Peter Bailinson said the issue of commuter swipe access does not have a typical standard among peer institutions. Senator Jard Odessky said he thought excessive build-up at places to sign in would be more of a security risk than letting commuter students swipe in.

Swiper no swiping!

Bwoglines: Censorship Edition
Didn't get parent's permission to visit that site

Didn’t get parent’s permission to visit that site

The aftermath of the murder of Boris Nemstov in Russia continues, which brings uncomfortable culture-profiling validity to House of Cards’ Putin-counterpart and the Pussy-Riot-like band he invited to dine (and dash) with President Underwood. (Reuters)

There’s no comfort of hiding behind a computer screen for 6,000 Chinese Internet users after the government removed and disabled their pseudonym usernames from entry into portals this weekend. The impetus for real names to replace nonsensical letter and character combinations is, most importantly, stripping Chinese teens from the rite of passage of having pubescent, semi-sexual conversations in chat rooms. (The Tech Portal)

Bloggers who use Google Blogger as their internet platform of expression will now have their unlimited venting rights taken away if their blogs sport any “sexually explicit or graphic nude images or video.”  (ZD Net)

The local police of a small Western Mass town deleted a Facebook page that promoted a fundraising event called the “Polar Plunge,” where a canine-resident of Wilbraham, Massachusetts entered freezing cold water with a spectator following. Bottom line, no consent for this dog’s long-delayed ice bucket challenge makes this reek of animal cruelty. (WTKR News)

It’s all fuzzy from here via Shutterstock

CUSS Presents: Your Basic Action Movie

Take a study break and watch CUSS’ latest episode: It’s sexy, dangerous, and most importantly, basic. Want to stay up to date with CUSS? Go like their facebook page here.

Basic Action Movie – Trailer (2015) from Bwog on Vimeo.

Midnight Dog Salon
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Just how I like it

Wondering what could possibly be going on behind the closed doors of the former Uni Cafe, Bwog Detective Henry Litwhiler takes a stab at uncovering a secret dog grooming scheme in the abandoned store.

I’d been waiting for three months to see one of those miserable establishments fade into memory. When the Uni Cafe finally breathed its last, I sharpened my scissors and steeled my resolve—what happens to a dream deferred? It waits for its opening, of course. It sits on soiled streets under the promise of opportunity. It stalks Riverside for inspiration, for the wretched motivation of a job poorly done.

Ours is a city of hacks, quacks, frauds, and delusional messiahs. They meet the canine form in its divinity but can see only a slab of clay in its place. Are they truly so blind as to see no suggestion in its sensual curves? Or are they so maddened by pride as to place their designs over those of God himself?

And it isn’t just the unholy trimming! The shampoo, the bows, the dyes, the brushing—nearly every trick in the modern canine cosmetologist’s toolbox seems bent on perversion. But not mine. No, I’m no modern furdresser. I belong to an older tradition, one built on a kind of humble grit that the modern professional so often lacks. The sight of a hound spurs me to enhance, never to profane.

As I saw the last gravel-caked van drive off with the last piece of detachable furniture from that ill-fated cafe, I made my way from my post at the bus stop to m2m. My gaze was steady and professional as I approached the counter.

“Health department,” I said, flashing my HamDel loyalty card.

A harrowing tale of redemption after the jump.

Where Should You Go For Spring Break?

Bwog Meeting Tonight
Momma Bwog is Dr. McDreamy

Momma Bwog is just like Dr. McDreamy

Peer pressure. Exam grades. Student loans. Relationship. School work. Depression. Assignments. Self esteem.

Are these some things that are haunting you this time of year? If so, you might have a chronic case of midterms.

9 out of 10 doctors recommend you come to the Bwog meeting tonight at 7PM in the SGO (Room 505) of Lerner.

***Bwog is not for everyone. Call your doctor if your obsession with sororities worsens or you have unusual changes in behavior. Call your doctor if you have uncontrollable muscle movements, as these can become permanent. High blood sugar has been reported with Bwog, and publications like it, and in extreme cases can lead to coma or death. Other risks include increased cholesterol, weight gain, decreases in white blood cells which can be serious, dizziness on standing, seizures, trouble swallowing, and impaired judgment or motor skills.

“Since joining Bwog, I feel better. Bwog and my schoolwork, they make a pretty good team.”

The intro to a doctor-patient roleplaying porno via Shutterstock

Bucketlist: Sustainable Development, Poets, And Violentology
Bucket List taking you all over the world

Bucket List taking you all over the world

Bucket List represents the immense academic privilege we enjoy as Columbia students. March is coming in like a lion with a lot of politically inclined events. Our recommendations are below, and the full list can be found after the jump. As always, if we’ve made a mistake or left anything noteworthy off the list, please let us know in the comments. 

Recommended

  • “The Age of Sustainable Development.” Monday 4:30-6:00 pm, Italian Academy. Jeffrey Sachs, Provost John Coatsworth. Register.
  • “Your Language-My Ear: Russian and American Poets at Close Quarters.” Tuesday 6:15-8:15 pm, 1512 IAB. Keti Chukhrov, Alexandra Petrova, Julia Dasbach, Matvei Yankelevich, more.
  • “Violentology: A Photographic Exploration of Conflict, Political Change and Human Rights in Colombia.” Tuesday 4:00-6:00 pm, 802 IAB. Stephen Ferry.
  • “Global Mayors Forum.” Wednesday 4:00-5:30, 1501 IAB. Michael Nutter (Philadelphia).

Ritual performances, poetry and turbo-folk await you

Bwoglines: The Dress Edition

"Was this the [dress] that launch'd a thousand ships / And burnt the topless towers of Ilium?"

Either way the dress is ugly

After blowing up Tumblr late Thursday night, this dress made its way onto almost every other social media site and news outlet, quickly becoming one of the biggest topics of controversy 2015 has seen. Here’s what everyone’s saying about #TheDress:

The New York Times was of course one of the first major news sources to hop on the dress band wagon, giving us curious fashion analysts the background behind the Dressgate scandal. (New York Times)

Wired busted out it’s old copy of Photoshop to use the watercolor tool in order to let us know that the dress is in fact light blue, not white. They then offered readers “the science” behind why some people see blue and black or white and gold. (Wired)

Yahoo is turning this in to a horoscope-like feature so that readers can learn “what the dress says about them.” (Yahoo)

Finally, and arguably most importantly, Buzzfeed compiled a list of what our favorite celebrities thought the colors of the dress were. Enjoy. (Buzzfeed)

Photo courtesy of every news outlet ever

The Question Of Faculty Inclusion In The Sexual Respect Program

alma

News Editor Eric Cohn raises some points of concern with Columbia’s new sexual respect program.

Recently, I contacted Dean Kromm asking her whether faculty and staff are required to go through any sort of sexual respect training, as is now required for students. In an official university statement from Associate Vice President for Media Relations Robert Hornsby, I learned that, although staff are required to go through some sort of sexual respect training, faculty are only “recommended” to do so. The university’s full statement can be read below:

“The first phase of the new sexual respect education program is geared to students. However, the University does require awareness and prevention training for staff on harassment and discrimination, which is also recommended for faculty. We are in process of reviewing and updating our training modules regarding this issue to best serve the entire campus community.”

My inquiry began after a tip sent to Bwog by a student who wished to remain anonymous alleging sexual harassment complaints against a particular professor since 2007. In addition to the concerns raised by student groups about Columbia’s new sexual respect program, this tip critiqued Columbia for its lack of a comprehensive sexual respect program for faculty and staff.

The tipster sent us a series of course reviews dating from 2003, highlighting the numerous complaints of sexual harassment and other inappropriate behavior from the professor. Our tipster requested that we omit the name of the professor and his department out of concern that the department might attempt to retaliate against her.

More on the accused professor and lack of a faculty sexual assault program here.

Here’s Your Quality Of Life Survey Drinking Game
Choose your poison

Choose your poison

So, Columbia’s second Quality of Life Survey is out. The subject matter is important – it’s a way for students to have a minuscule voice in the Hobbesian forces of the University of Columbia in the City of New York. But you know what’s even better than handing out statistics to the administration? Doing so while thoroughly buzzed! DISCLAIMER: Please drink responsibly; actually doing this will probably either get you CAVA’d or giving the admins some really weird data.

Take 1 sip when…

  • You find any bureaucratic language
  • You encounter any fashionable buzzwords
  • You are asked to rate some weird aspect of Columbia you’ve never encountered before
  • You make a gut judgment for a question
  • The survey makes you think back to that time you pulled an all-nighter for a CC paper/both printers malfunctioned/you actually used the showers in McBain
  • You rate your quality of life for something as “Very dissatisfied”

Take 2 sips when…

  • You are asked to evaluate something admins have no power over
  • You spend more than 30 seconds deliberating over a question
  • You write more than a paragraph of comments on an aspect of your quality of life (take another if it’s about printing)
  • A survey question is ambiguously worded
  • You rate your quality of life for something as “Very satisfied”

Take 3 sips when…

  • You find a typo
  • You find a factual error in the survey
  • You write in all caps to express your frustration about something (take another if it’s about printing)
  • You have trouble evaluating Columbia’s wifi because of Columbia’s wifi
  • You finish the survey
Nobody Asked Tats: DUFF Edition
You, probably.

You, probably.

Duff: one syllable, four letters, infinite questions. You’ve seen the trailer or heard the Spotify ads (dude, just get Premium, it’s $5 a month), and you can’t help but wonder, am I the Designated Ugly Fat FriendAfter a brief hiatus, Tats is back at it with your most pressing questions, answered.

Dear Tats,

I’m something of a film aficionado, and recently a film has been making many waves in the circles of art critique I frequent. I speak, of course, about The Duff. I’ve been thinking a lot about this, and such a pivotal work of art begs the question: how exactly can I identify if I am the Duff? I anxiously await your response.

She’s Not All That

Dear She’s Not All That,

Listen, I am so glad you are exploring these difficult questions in this time of self-discovery. College is all about learning who you really are and embracing your identity, and if that means accepting your DUFF status, so be it. Listen, it’s important to know exactly who and what you are. After all, self-awareness is the first step to self-acceptance, and in the eternal Instagram responses words of Ariana Grande, “Don’t compare yourself to anybody else and try to love the things U usually hate on.”

That said, you can’t hate yourself if you don’t have anything to hate! So without further ado, here are the top seven signs that you, dear Not All That, are the Duff of your friends.

1. Your friends keep lovingly referring to you as “old girl,” “lazy,” “pathetic,” and “ugly slob.” It’s all in good fun though!!

2. At parties, you’ve developed a fun, extroverted habit of curling up into a little ball, hedgehog style, in the corner, so as to expose the least amount of vulnerability to the dangerous outside world.

3. Your parents have stopped asking if you’re seeing anyone and instead just send you acne cream and all-access passes to “health clubs.”

4. Your roommate just bought you deodorant.

5. Your yoga pants keep ripping and you can’t figure out why. On an unrelated note, you often fall asleep clutching a bag of Cheetos.

6. Sometimes when your Insecure Pretty Friend gets sad, she pokes your muffin top and pops your pimples. It cheers her up quite a bit, actually.

7. A fun Friday night activity for your clique is throwing mayonnaise and cream cheese at you until you break down and sob in the bathroom, desperately dreaming of a slightly less reductive, misogynistic, materialistic, capitalist regime.

On the other hand, to some degree, aren’t we all DUFFs? Indeed, what is humanity but a perpetual state of obese, unsightly shame, perpetually thrust upon us, one heteronormative rom-com at a time? Selfish, immoral, disinterested in goodness but to appear so, our state of nature is fundamentally hideous in its unceasing quest for immortality.

But hey, on the bright side, whatever else goes wrong, regardless of your DUFF status and how alone you feel inside these cold February nights, hearken back to Ari: “Please be good to U. Love youuuu tons.”

XOXO, Tats

Lookin’ good via Shutterstock.

Come Out To The Columbia Festival Of Winds
Like you're doing anything better

Like you’re doing anything better

This Sunday (i.e., tomorrow), the Columbia University Wind Ensemble will host its 7th annual Festival of Winds, a full-day concert featuring performers from colleges and schools from around the region, held in our own Roone Arledge Auditorium. Proceeds from the festival will go to support music education in New York City, where budget tightening has led many schools to scale back or outright cancel their music education programs.

The Columbia Festival Band under Cornell’s James Spinazzola will kick off the performance at 1:00pm with Jager’s Espirit De Corps. Next will come the NYU Concert Band playing works by Gabrieli, Schuman, and Perischetti; the Princeton University Wind Ensemble playing works by Ticheli and Shostakovich; the Manhattan Wind Ensemble works by Reed, Giroux, and Marquez; the ISO Symphonic Band works by Korsakov, Barber, and Ticheli; and the Columbia University Wind Ensemble works by Yagisawa and Maslanka.

The festival will end around 4:25 with a performance by all of the groups combined, of Percy Grainger’s Irish Tune from County Derry. A reception will follow for VIP ticket-holders.

Purchase your dirt cheap (or VIP) ticket today!

Musical propaganda via CUWE