Dec

6

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No scrubs

No scrubs

The hole that was Barnard’s library is entering a new, equally noisy phase of construction, which of course calls for a celebration. TLC Rising (which is the name of the party, not a Marvel sequel or plan to revive a tired television network) will take place today from 11-1:30 at either the hole itself or in the Diana Center lobby depending on the weather. There will be information about the new Teaching and Learning Center, as well as snacks and a special giveaway (maybe some tender love and care?), and an opportunity to sign the first beam to be used in the building’s construction.

Dec

6

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Can I get a J-A-P?

Can I get a J-A-P? Seriously, curious how America will look with a JAP in power. Expecting a Pinkberry in the White House

In a passionate Op-Ed, Christopher Suprun, a Republican Texas presidential elector, announced he will not be submitting his vote to elect Donald Trump. Disappointed that Trump does not believe in Reagan’s “shining city on the hill” model, which Suprun forgets most people don’t believe in, his argument went the way of Reagan’s heart and film career. (NY Times)

The Supreme Court or #SCOTUS tackled racially charged gerrymandering in GOP states like Virginia and North Carolina. It is now up to these states to prove that they redrew state lines because of partisan politics and not because they are racist. (LA Times)

India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi has won the internet poll for Time Person of the Year. In other news, Hillary came in second (again). (The Wall Street Journal)

An exposé on Jared Kushner, President-elect Donald Trump’s son in law,  reveals his Machiavellian and sordid rise to power and revealed him as the person pulling the strings the entire election cycle. (Haaretz)

Photo courtesy of The Wrap

Dec

5

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This is Sharon. Sharon ls screaming inside.

This is Sharon. Sharon ls screaming inside.

Isn’t early December just the greatest? Thanksgiving sweeps you off your feet, feeds you, pampers you, and unceremoniously drops you back into reality. You’re left disoriented in the calm before the storm – the ultimate finals storm. It’s not like you’re actually doing your finals, but you will be very soon, and it’s almost as if sitting with that knowledge is worse than actually experiencing it. Overwhelmed? That’s okay. Today’s field notes will show you that we’re all on the same boat.

Giving Up In Academia:

  • A bottle of Jameson was passed around the seminar.
  • Went to philosophy club. Got three glasses of free wine because no one wanted to drink it. Someone had dropped their pen in the bottle, but I know the material world isn’t real!
  • Made $50 from psych studies and spent $40 of it as of Monday morning.
  • Spent the week high on Vicodin from a wisdom tooth surgery, didn’t attend one single lecture, and somehow ended up the only one in my class who was granted an extension for the essay that was due.
  • Had my third midterm for a class. The fourth one is next week, just two days before the final. Why.
  • Got discounts for seven people to attend a conference and only two (including me) showed up.

So much more after the jump:

Dec

5

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The face of wokeness

The face of wokeness

On Sunday evening, the Broadway Advocacy Coalition, in collaboration with Columbia Law School, presented an event in their political and social activism series titled “The Invitation”. This installment of the series, “The American Hangover”, featured several segments of ‘artivism’ — a fusion of art and activist performances. Bwogger Lexie Lehmann shares her thoughts on the event below.

When my friends asked me what I was doing on Sunday night, instead of attending the weekly Bwog meeting, I had trouble answering. A few weeks ago, I reserved tickets for the Broadway Advocacy Coalition’s event “The American Hangover”; the event promised to feature performances and speeches in response to the election. Additionally, the event boasted big appearances from Brandon Dixon CC ‘03, who recently received flack for calling out VP-elect Mike Pence during a performance of the musical Hamilton, as well as Tony award winner Ben Vereen and Tony nominee Condola Rashad. The described content of the event was intentionally vague: “artistic collaborations between dialogue, panel discussions and performance to educate and empower the public to continue creating the world we imagine in spite of the disappointment of this election”. I was intrigued, but I honestly didn’t know what to expect.

As I walked into the event, I was unsure of whether or not it had already started. In the front of the room, two young women were reading letters on their post-election thoughts while loud, upbeat jazz music played in the background. On a chalkboard behind the women, an artist was drawing large, pastel-chalk pictures of Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton. In the back of the room, a camera crew was setting up video-cameras and microphones for the event’s live stream. After the two women completed reading their letters, the room was silent as a woman clad in black began a contemporary dance performance in the center of the room. She was joined by 4 other dancers, all moving to a strong drum beat. Their dance was fluid and clean, providing a striking juxtaposition to the first act’s disorganization.

After the dance finished, Kendall Thomas, Nash Professor and director of the Center for the Study of Law and Culture at Columbia Law School, and Jeanine Tesori, a Tony-winning composer, came onstage to introduce the event. Thomas talked about the intersection of art and law in his life; how he began his career as a performer but shifted gears to pursue law because he saw a capacity for both art and legal studies to practice justice. The inspiration for this event came out of that ideal: using art as an outlet for healing after Donald Trump’s win. He likened the experience of post-election America to waking up with a hangover: feelings of fatigue, regret, and discomfort — hence the title of the showcase: “The American Hangover”.

Read about the calamity that ensued after the jump!

Dec

5

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Exhibit A: Wise Professor

Exhibit A: Wise Professor

The semester is slowly wrapping up, and we all know what that means: wisdom in bulk from our favorite departing seniors. That being said, there’s a whole other demographic of wise people to tap into on campus – and no, we’re not talking about the Diana Center pizza ladies. We’re talking about your professors.

Do you have a professor you could listen to forever? A professor you just wish could read your Goldman Sachs cover letter? A cute young (or old – we don’t judge) professor you want to… get to know better? Look no further. Nominate your icons/mentors/crushes for an Actual Wisdom by submitting a short description of what makes them so irresistible to [email protected] by Friday, December 9th at 11:59pm.

Nominations can be submitted anonymously, so what could you possibly have to lose?

Gay icon via Business Insider

Dec

5

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"Marcia look, future president Donald Trump retweeted my poorly constructed personal breakdown about how much I hate everyone around me!"

“Marcia look, future president Donald Trump retweeted my poorly constructed personal breakdown about how much I hate everyone around me!”

The long-troubled relationship between Donald Trump and Saturday Night Live reached a whole new level of meta this weekend when the president-elect sent angry reckless tweets in response to the show’s mockery of his angry reckless tweeting. Alec Baldwin responded with – yes, you guessed it – yet another tweet, saying that he’d agree to put an end to his impression if Trump ever released his tax returns. (The New York Times)

Uber’s latest update, an addition which allows the app to track a user’s location for five minutes after a journey has ended, has started raising questions about privacy and spreading panic around various social media sites.  (Digital Trends)

Sunday saw the resignation of two influential world leaders at the same time. Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi has resigned over the Italian referendum loss, while John Key has announced that he “owes it to his family to step aside after ten years”. We get it – we wouldn’t want to be a politician in 2016 either. (CNN)

Sony Pictures reports that actress Amy Schumer is currently in negations to play the titular role in the upcoming live-action film adaptation of Barbie. Many have pointed out that Schumer comes across as an interesting pick for young audiences, considering her usual style of sexually-charged satire. Sony is eyeing a summer 2018 opening. (Breitbart)

Image courtesy of Beta News

Dec

4

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The end of the semester is approaching, and that means it’s almost time for everyone’s favorite opportunity to laugh at jokes they’d be too uncomfortable to make in front of their friends: Orgo Night. This year, as in all years, Orgo Night will be held the last night of reading week (not the night before the organic chemistry exam, contrary to popular belief.) You can see all the flyers below, and take part in pseudo-intellectual discourse about the flyers on the official Orgo Night Facebook page.

Whether you love these flyers or think they represent everything wrong with Columbia as a community, you can rest assured that the Band will find some way to laugh at you – as evidenced by their new promo (released earlier this afternoon), in which bandies read and react to mean comments.

Dec

4

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Come see this loser talk about how he's not really wrong when he was actually completely, 100% wrong.

Come see this loser talk about how he’s not really wrong when he was completely 100% wrong.

Bucket List represents the intellectual privilege we enjoy as Columbia students. We do our very best to bring to your attention important guest lecturers and special events on campus. Our recommendations for this week are below, and the full list is after the jump. If you notice any events that have been left off the list, or a correction, please leave them in the comments.

Recommended

  • “Data, Polling, the Media and Democracy: A panel discussion of Election 2016” Tuesday, 5:30-7:00 PM, Rotunda, Low Library. Nate Silver, Emily Bell, Robert Shapiro (RSVP).
  • “#bringbackourgirls: A discourse in Islamist militancy in Africa” Tuesday, 6:00-7:00 PM, 607B Pulitzer Hall. Helon Habila, Brian Larkin, Shobana Shankar, Nicholas Lemann (RSVP).
  • “The Gendered Road to STEM Engagement: Psychosocial factors contributing to academic and social engagement among women in STEM fields” Wednesday, 4:10-5:10 PM, 614 Schermerhorn. Bonita London.
  • “Sanctuary: Social, Legal, and Historical Perspectives on an Activist Category” Thursday, 6:00-8:00 PM, Held Lecture Hall, Barnard College. Alexandra Délano Alonso, Eric Foner, Alyshia Gálvez, Elora Mukherjee, JC Salyer (RSVP).

Full list here->

Dec

4

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Is this you too?

Is this you too?

It feels like Thanksgiving has just passed, and now, school is ending in eight days. The reality of imminent finals is finally dawning upon us, and we could not decide whether to feel #blessed or #fucked. On one hand, winter break is approaching. We could finally stop sleeping in the stacks. On the other, our GPA is not high enough to feed into our overachieving standards and most important of all, there are only three Bwog meetings left for this semester.

So, join us in Lerner 505 at 7 p.m. Bring your pitches, and become one of the worn-out Bwoggers, who, amidst all trepidation, still tries to be funny.

Image via Patreon

Dec

4

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These doors will never open on a Sunday night again...

These doors will never open on a Sunday night again…

This semester, Barnard’s late night dining moved from Hewitt Dining Hall to Diana Cafe. Many of the students who visit the dining halls between 8:30 and 11pm are the same, but has the very nature of late night become intrinsically different while they were celebrating the new uses of their meal swipes? Senior staffer Betsy Ladyzhets reflects on the changes she’s seen.

Once, in a bygone era (i.e. last year), you could always find me in the same place on Sunday nights: Hewitt late night.

Sundays were often the most stressful days of my week; I would wake up panicked about how much homework I had to do, procrastinate on that homework by taking an extremely long time to eat breakfast, attempt to get through a lot of it (and fail miserably), go to a string of evening club meetings, then find myself exhausted, overwhelmed, and above all else – hungry. That hunger would without fail take me to Hewitt for a late dinner, at which I would tear through three or four pieces of pizza while getting very slightly less behind on reading.

The dining hall, with its trapezoidal trays and piss-colored tables, always seemed to me like an oasis of comfort within a school that was often too much for me to handle. Hewitt has almost a homey atmosphere – maybe it’s the small tables, or maybe it’s the friendly staff, or maybe it’s the vaguely yellowish haze that always seems to hang over the place, like a nostalgic filter in a romantic movie. And if you’re a Barnard student, especially a first-year, there’s a very high chance that you’ll run into someone you know there – especially during late night, when it seems as though everyone wants to delay doing their difficult reading just a little longer.

Delay doing your difficult reading with the rest of this post?

Dec

4

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Gambia's freshest president, Adama Barrow

Gambia’s freshest president, Adama Barrow

Signal, an encrypted message app has skyrocketed by 400% in downloads since Donald Trump was elected president. Interpreting such incident, Moxie Marlinspike, the founder of Open Whisper Systems, said: “People are maybe a little bit uncomfortable with him.” (Buzzfeed)

In a letter that Apple sent to the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, Apple hints at the possibility of developing a self-driving car. (Mashable)

With a single phone call with Taiwan, president-elect, Donald Trump has managed to break a long-time protocol established since President Richard M. Nixon. Jon M. Huntsman who was an ambassador to China noted: “Taiwan is about to become a more prominent feature of the overall U.S.-China relationship”. (The New York Times)

Gambians rejoiced after 22 years of oppressive administration under President Yahya Jammeh, as they voted him out of office. To many people’s surprise, the authoritarian president calmly turned his presidency over to the winner, Adama Barrow, following his unexpected defeat. (The New York Times)

photo via The New York Times

Dec

4

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Look at those freshly pie-d faces

Look at those freshly pie-d faces

There is no other mail we would rather receive at 3:24 a.m. than the cast of the 123rd annual Varsity Show. Find the list we’ve been refreshing our inbox all night for below:

Francisco Alvidrez CC ’19
India Beer BC ’20
Bernadette Bridges CC ’19
Xander Browne CC ’19 (V122)
Julia Dooley BC ’20
Harrison Gale BC ’20
Rachel Greenfeld BC ’19 (V122)
Jacob Kaplan CC ’20
Joel-Isaac Musoki CC ’20
Gus O’Connor CC ’20
Jamie Gore Pawlik BC ’17
Tom Phelan CC ’20
Lauren Wilmore BC ’20

There’s lots of ~fresh meat~ on this cast, as it is comprised of mostly freshman and sophomores. That’s fine. We just want to laugh. Make it funny, or else we’ll become vegetarians!

Dec

3

An incredibly realistic image of a party at Carman

An incredibly realistic image of a party at Carman

Recently, Senior Staff Writer Gabrielle Kloppers was lucky enough to have the opportunity to offer a survey to her close list of 800 Facebook friends. The survey concerned alcohol and drug use at Columbia, and their affect on GPA. The results were surprising.

I know, I know. What a played out survey topic, right? We see the exact same survey on the Class Facebook page every week. But this time is different- this time it is mine, and I can see the results of the survey. Below are my revelations.

Columbia students drink way less than I thought they did.
At least during my time here, it’s generally been pretty uncommon for a friend to turn down a weekend (or weekday) drinking session. Although Columbia has the stereotype of being a bunch of nerds who stay in Butler all Saturday night, I thought we had broken the mold. I was wrong. Columbia students generally report that they drink between 1-2 times a month and 1-2 times a week. This number was surprisingly low to me, and a lot of people completely abstained from drinking.

Columbia students smoke far less pot than I thought they did.
Apparently, around 45% of Columbia students never smoke pot. From the smell in Carman every Friday night (or always), one would disagree but it is the statistical truth! Columbia is not a school of stoners, just Adderall-poppers and Xanny-munchers. I think. Maybe I’ll do another survey and this assumption will be broken too.

More surprising stats after the jump

Dec

3

Written by

Yum?

Yum?

You know what time of year it is. No, not cuffing season. Or Christmas. It’s crunch time, which means (for some of the riskier folk)  d r u g s. It can be hard to know whether to buy at all. And you may not know what to buy, especially if your doctor forgot to prescribe it to you. Don’t worry. Bwog’s got you covered. In this week’s Back-of-the-Envelope, we’ll tell you the ins-and-outs of campus dealing, and whether that guy from Spanish class who’s offering you Adderall is actually worth it. Disclaimer: Bwog does not condone the use of illicit substances, do not try this at home, etc. etc. 

  • Assume 75% of students on campus have ADHD, ADD, depression, anxiety, or another medical issue. These figures are based off actual data about the sharp increase in mental health diagnoses, as well as accepted fact that Columbia is a rich-ass school full of people who’ve been hip to the therapy trend since its beginning (and are also prone to root canals and wisdom teeth surgery that endow them with magical painkillers).
  • Assume 60% of those students are prescribed drugs, and 55% of them actually get the prescriptions filled (what about the other 5%? you’re wondering why anyone would be crazy enough to NOT fill their xanax scrip? well, my friend, try waiting in the basement pharmacy line at Duane Reade).
  • Assume 40% of these students have excess drugs that they are willing and ready to sell.

That 40% market saturation rate can be broken down into drug types. Let’s look at some common ones: Xanax and Klonopin are anti-anxiety pills, and can either make you feel high or sleepy. Adderall and Ritalin are stimulants, you want these for your all-nighters. Percocet, Vicodin, and Tylenol with codeine are painkillers.

  • Assume 40% of the prescriptions are for Adderall, Ritalin, or similar. Assume 30% are for antidepressants like Prozac or Abilify that can’t give you the instant gratification you need during exams. Of the remaining 30%, assume 20% is Xanax and Klonopin, and 10% are painkillers.

The Weeknd has a great song about Percocet, and it’s also commonly prescribed for wisdom teeth surgery. But it also might make you fall asleep. Is this really what you want (or need)? We’ll also assume the hazy qualities of Xanax and Kpins aren’t what you’re looking for during study time. So, let’s zero in on Addy. The above fractions leave us with a relatively low rate of availability for second-hand stimulants.

  • Assume average Adderall street price: $10/20 mg
  • Assume average (generic) Adderall prescription price with insurance: $40/month

Okay, so you’re going to pay a lot more on the street. Maybe you can get the homie price. Either way, do you think you’ll abuse the drug? Do you want to? Let’s assume no to both. In that case, if your level of exam desperation if 10^1 or higher on a scale of 10^2, and if Spanish class boy is offering you one pill for $10 or less, go for it. Just don’t end up like this Adderall-addicted lady in the New York Times.

Cheers!

Dec

3

Written by

Godspeed, Jae.

Godspeed, Jae.

On Thursday, December 1st, the ill-frequented, rarely-updated developer blog for [email protected] announced its “30 day notice before b@ will go offline”. After almost 10 continuous years of servicing the greater Columbia community—with a few notable breaks earlier on—the pseudonymous online hangout now finds itself at death’s door. The site’s creator, Jonathan Pappas CC ’06, known affectionately on the website by his pseudonym “Jae Daemon” or just “Jae”, offered his reasoning on the developer blog, highlighting the site’s monetary and time commitment, his own distancing from the board, as well as potential safety liabilities present in bored@’s upkeep.

Bored@ is notoriously hard to explain, label, or pin values upon. The vast majority of users prefer to remain anonymous, hesitating to create and maintain pseudonymous accounts—”personalities”—with which to link their thoughts and opinions. Despite this, a healthy and unique internet culture flourished on the site. For every inside joke losing relevance, each meme fading into the Internet, and every power user who inevitably graduated and moved on with their life, bored@ remained very much alive. So much so that in a Blue and White investigation, the magazine wrote of bored@’s collective voice as “a more intelligent sort of 4chan-speak that is strongly influenced by social anxiety, privilege, gender, and pretension”. And this, in a way, is true. The front page of the website (as of the time of writing this article) includes depressing comments on the Columbia sex life, Columbia copypasta, lyrics, poetry, altered Biblical verse, personalities referencing each other, and, of course, quite a few shitposts. The site’s users take very literally the words emblazoned above bored@’s post box—”What’s on your mind?”

But for all the creativity and entertainment which colours the site’s culture, the anonymous nature of bored@ often attracted a nasty and brutish manner of thought. As in any anonymous forum, there were endless opportunities to herald socially-unacceptable, distasteful, and downright hostile comments. For [email protected], these included every comment under the sun about Columbia, Barnard, General Studies, race, religion, specific campus figures, specific administrative figures, both campus and international media, and politics. In some ways, [email protected] represented the only true space of free thought at Columbia, where those who were most socially, politically, and culturally alienated could carve out a small area of the Columbia community for themselves. To paint the site with such romanticisms, however, betrays a long history of scandal and hostility.

After returning in October of 2009 from a financially-induced break, bored@ shut down in December due to a proliferation of “slanderous and racist comments.” The site, which had grown to encompass a variety of schools within the Ivy League, was suffering from an assailment of “racial slurs [and] the most offensive things you could possibly come up with” posted via proxy servers. Despite returning to—and remaining at—Columbia since 2010, the site suffered from a number of scandals involving other participating universities. Most infamously, the Dartmouth division of the site, named [email protected] for Dartmouth’s Baker Library, grew more rapidly than any of the other schools’ boards, developing a very unique and aggressive online culture. [email protected] found itself involved in a series of distasteful scandals, as when users of the board launched threats and insults at Dartmouth activists protesting “homophobia, sexual assault and racism during the 2013 Dimensions of Dartmouth program,” or when a 2014 user posted a “guide on how to rape a specific member of the Class of 2017.” Nevertheless, the Dartmouth contingent of the board tenuously returned earlier this school year.

More recently, a seemingly explosive growth in the “alt-right” online culture has heralded [email protected]’s decline. In some ways, [email protected] grew unpalatable to a large window of the Columbia student body, often oppositely polarized to the standard rhetoric and discourse on campus. To many users, the board was the only place in a campus like Columbia, in a city like New York, to indulge in socially and academically dangerous viewpoints, while further hoping to discover they were not, in fact, alone with such ostracized ideas. To others, though, “alt-right” trolling served a means for entertainment and humour, and users would often bemoan the conflation of the board’s identity with intellectually vapid figures like Milo Yiannopoulos simply because “outsider” “normies” consistently forgot to not “feed the trolls.”

Regardless, the board is a very different place now than it was a year ago, and as it was a year before that. To decry Pappas’ decision as an act of defence against virulent ideas and speech would fly in the face of bored@’s 10 years of even allowing such ideas to be stated, argued, and amended—especially given the massive financial drain on Pappas personally. However, we don’t consider it melodramatic or romantic to remember the site as the truly last frontier of uninfluenced and entirely free intellectual space at Columbia, where personalities found friends and social groups, anonymous users presented socially unpalatable opinions, and campus journalists picked up breaking news. What will happen in the wake of [email protected]’s death, we cannot say. But if only for the decade of Columbia students who found some sentiments of community and belonging, we wish bored@ and Jae a fond farewell.

Chat via boredatbutler.com

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