Written by Briana Bursten
Research question: How many science students that wait all week for BunsenBwog will actually understand the Red Hot Chili Peppers reference we dropped in the title? Regardless, Bunsen Burner Belle Briana Bursten is back from the CUMC newsroom and is tapping into her own gray matter to share her wealth of scientific knowledge with us all.
Bwoggers know that time spent in the library often turns into minutes spent searching Spotify or hours spent laughing while scrolling through your favorite source for Columbia student news. Although some of us may feel that we have no real control over our attention, researchers at CUMC would argue otherwise. According to a recent finding, it’s been proven that the human attention network in the brain has evolved greatly— partially in response to the complex social situations that humans face daily. Researchers made both primates and humans perform a task of recollection and reaction while simultaneously mapping brain activity through fMRI. Surprisingly enough, humans performed much better on the test than the primates did. Moral of the story: try your best to focus… if not for yourself, do it for Darwin!
Gluten-free diets, Vegan fare, juice cleanses, and… brain-mapping? Though the first three trends are cited by many to lead to healthier lifestyles, the newsroom tells us that brain-mapping may be the most promising. The latter has allowed CUMC neuroscientists to determine the regions of the brain that respond (or don’t respond) to weight loss. Neuroscientist Michael Morabito has found through brain-mapping that changes in weight alter leptin sensitivity. This alteration in sensitivity remains even after weight loss stops, which may account for the struggle that many face of maintaining their weight loss post-diet.
And the Horwitz award goes to…
Written by Caroline Montgomery
The air maybe getting colder, but that hasn’t stopped Barnard Bearoness, Caroline Montgomery, from hitting up her Monday night hotspot…the SGA meeting. She’s got the goods to report back.
This week, SGA was back to its poppin’ self. With new representatives present and the old still reppin’, there were plenty of updates to go around.
First and foremost, the Barnard endowment proposal application is out! The application allows students to submit proposals to SGA with ideas to better the Barnard community. There is currently a pot of $44,000 sitting and waiting to enhance Barnard! Past initiatives that the endowment funded were the free Barnard thermoses (which continue to be to be handed out. Check Facebook for times and locations!), the Hewitt mural, and the whiteboard wall in Altschul Hall. This is an opportunity to voice your ideas and make a change! The application will be open until Wednesday October 21st 2015 at 5 pm. The final chosen projects will be announced on November 17th. For more information look on the Barnard website and join the Facebook event to stay up-to-date.
Sometimes, the bad guys come out on top. Not today! The 2015 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine was jointly awarded to William C. Campbell and Satoshi Ōmura for their discoveries in regards to therapy against roundworm parasites and to Youyou Tu for her research on Malaria treatments. Kill the bugs with science, guys! (NobelPrize)
It’s Breast Cancer Awareness Month! For those of you out there with breasts, take care of ’em, and for the breasted and breastless alike, consider donating time and/or money to a breast cancer research foundation in October. (Huffington Post)
You all know how we love our Hotline Bling here at Bwog (look at our past playlists for a demonstration of our adoration), and Erykah Badu did what we had thought impossible: she made the jam even hotter. Listen, weep, call your side piece who you’ve been disrespecting ever since he left the city….. (Pitchfork)
Booty-short lovers and SoHo-frequenting hipsters, rejoice: American Apparel is filing for bankruptcy protection but will continue selling your favorite too-tight jeans and shiny spandex! Put away the credit card, you don’t have to buy up the whole store just yet. (ABC)
Hotline Bling Listener via Shutterstock
So, Hurricane Joaquin happened. The wind howled, the rain drops fell mercilessly against your window, and you binge-watched the entire first season of How to Get Away with Murder in one and a half days/had a fight with your boyfriend. It’s okay, because other people got up to stuff for you! Enjoy, and email any and all future tips about your week(end) to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Can’t Be Stopped By A Hurricane
Tags: columbia is a moral cesspool, crushes, drunk actors, field notes, free $wag, heatless in coldtober, hurricane joaquin made us all rise from the ashes (get it), if you see someone crack their head please do something about it, judgement free zone, model un kids are very identifiable, morton williams is inaccessible to the common man, notes from the field, ren faire flair if you dare to care, wheelbarrow races are v bwog
Re:vision, a rad student-run literary podcast consisting of interviews with undergraduate writers at Columbia University, featured Professor Margo Jefferson in their most recent podcast. Jefferson is part of the writing department in the Columbia University School of the Arts, and is also a Pulitzer Prize-winner who has written for the New York Times, Newsweek, New York Magazine, and Vogue, among other publications. She is a recipient of the Guggenheim Fellowship and a Rockefeller Foundation/Theater Communications Group grant. In 2006, Jefferson published On Michael Jackson and this September, she published her memoir Negroland to acclaim.
The podcast delves into Negroland, her creative process, touring, teaching, trigger warnings, and a whole host of other thoughtfully explored topics. Check it out!
She Works at Columbia via Columbia University School of the Arts
Tags: "would you ever teach your own book in your class" "lol no", actually really interesting people surround you at Columbia, columbia characters, hybridity, it gets real so stick through even though it's 50 minutes, mercurial, podcast, radical revision (is something you learned in uwriting), re:vision
Written by Joe Milholland
Ch-ch-changes abound for CCSC and its bylaws…and there’s a dose of classic obliviousness too. Expert Joe Milholland reports back from the jungle of bureaucracy that is student government.
Along with grammatical changes and lengthy discussions on how long they should allow discussions to run, the Columbia College Student Council made some notable changes to its by-laws on Sunday night – although they will not vote to approve all these revisions until their next meeting.
Tags: Academic Awards Committee, by-laws are laws by the way, ccsc, college days, f@cu, grammar is v important, miscommunication is the essence of the columbia experience, mysterious things, Office of Disability Services, Student Affairs Committee, who did they think the rando at the activities fair was?
Clear your social calendars, because Barnard’s Library Paint Night is here! Channel your more foolhardy, artistic, and sensitive past self (pre-Columbia/Barnard) by picking up a brush and leaving your mark on campus. There will be three designated walls on the second floor of the library for you to explore your talents, so get ready and dress for the occasion (smocks, if you are the type of person who has one on hand). Expect snacks, hot beverages, and pretty cool iron-on patches (in exchange for a handwritten memory about the library), as well as a groovy time. The event lasts from 6 to 8 pm and will take place in Lehman Hall today.
Barnard Is Hip via Instagram
We know it’s hard to muster up school pride, especially as the football team continues to dash your hopes, but live a little and participate in “Kill the Cup”! It’s a nationwide campaign meant to encourage the use of reusable coffee mugs (run by EcoReps and Columbia Dining) and 15 other colleges are participating and competing for money. (Facebook)
Just for our fave commenter, we have some juicy Nic Cage gossip, namely that he was offered and turned down the role of Aragorn in Lord of the Rings. Can you even imagine an alternate universe where Nicholas Cage, famed Nicholas Cage impersonator, plays Aragorn? (A.V. Club)
Hillary Clinton, your sometimes-relatable gal pal and presidential candidate, appeared on the season premiere of Saturday Night Live and did pretty okay, even though she didn’t tackle some of the hardest issues. (NPR)
In response to the devastating U.S. airstrike on a Doctors Without Borders hospital, the Afghan government’s response has been surprisingly muted. (Washington Post)
McGraw-Hill made an exceedingly dumb error in writing about slavery in their textbooks, but has said that the description will be updated. (Time)
Carman Bathroom #goals via Shutterstock
Tags: bwoglines, dumb fails, ecoreps, free mugs in butler cafe, hillary clinton more like hillary mintin' that money, never actually using the recycling bin in your dorm room and growing increasingly anxious about it as the year goes on, nic cage more like nic is the rage, sustainability yo, thought experiments
Written by Anna Hotter
Have you ever wondered who is behind those hilarious yet complicated videos you are definitely watching on Bwog? No? Well, we are still proud to introduce the team that will make our Second Season the best it can be. Rude.
Barnard Buy/Sell/Trade is the place to get textbooks, clothes, shoes, power strips, and mattress pads–but could it also be something more? We’ve noticed some pretty weird shit on the group, and although no one is selling flamethrowers, we do wonder whether the eclectic posts are the beginnings of a new era in the group: heralding the birth of a connective tissue greater than the need for books and clothes that currently bonds posters. We collected and analyzed some of our favorites.
Most overpriced: “Selling a Bernie Sanders shirt for $20.” We’re pretty sure Bernie would hate that.
We’re sure this made a Catholic CU student very happy: “My uber driver gave me a ‘green zone’ ticket to see the pope today–anyone want it?”
Best party-starter: “Does anyone have a large sangria/drink pitcher I could borrow for tomorrow night?” (Bwog was upset that we didn’t cop an invite).
As every tight-wearer knows, rips are the bane of one’s existence: “if anyone has ripped tights they plan on throwing out, id love to take em off your hands — especially if theyre sheer!” This girl is a saint.
Buy Sell Trade becomes a bakery: “hello I am looking to buy homemade banana bread off of someone who knows how to make it well.”
Best gig: “Hey does anyone know a guy or girl who would be willing to dress up as Darth Vader for a 6 year old birthday $40/1.5hrs…party is TOMORROW(Friday) at teachers college and show up 4pm-5:30. PM me if interested! Thanks! *costume provided and free food:) + cash = winner.”
Tryna cop some condiments: “yo does anyone in 616 have ketchup” Unfortunately the poster finished her fries before the catsup came thru.
Tags: barnard, buy sell trade barnard, can we cop some of that nana bread pls, i hope darth vader made bank that night, not sure why that girl was selling the vader thing SO HARD... it seems pretty obvious that it's a great gig, ripped tights are so in, that bernie shirt tho, we wonder if some of this stuff is still available, what kinda uber driver was that? only a lil jealous
Written by Eric Cohn
Bucket List represents the immense academic privilege we enjoy as Columbia students. Our recommendations are below, and the full list can be found below the jump. As always, if we’ve made a mistake or left anything noteworthy off the list, please let us know in the comments.
This week, you felt it coming on. Your nose got stuffy, you woke up with a sore throat, and by the next morning, your voice was gone. By Thursday night, you were ready for the weekend. You needed this opportunity to recharge and recover. Parties? Nah. Late nights? Nah. You spent Friday and Saturday nights in bed takin’ it easy. And now it’s Sunday, and you’re still not over it, whatever it is.
And hey, we get it. We’ve been there. But just remember, we’re all in this together. We are all getting sick. And now it’s getting even colder outside, and the dorm AC has been switched to heat, and no one wants to leave their rooms. But that’s no excuse, because you still gotta come to the Bwog meeting tonight! That’s right, sickos. We’re meeting at 7pm sharp in Lerner 505. There will be snacks, jokes, and lots of hand sanitizer. Can’t wait to see you there… but don’t get too close.
Smol child via Shutterstock
Have you ever been walking down the sidewalk and suddenly had your path inexplicably obstructed? Well, now you get to have that experience every day! Thanks to Friedman’s. Pro-sidewalk-walkers and Plimpton residents Lili Brown and Courtney Couillard decided to investigate further.
We wanted to give Friedman’s a chance. With “fresh” options and a bougie addition to the block, the new restaurant seemed to be up there with Flat Top. Things were promising. We wanted it to work.
Suddenly, everything changed. About a few weeks ago, Friedman’s decided to add some plants outside the restaurant. Instead of a few dainty flower boxes, the restaurant installed multiple large bins. Nay, tubs. As if these giant metal tubs weren’t enough, Friedman’s decided to create a safari aesthetic with tall plants (we have no clue what they are. They look like weeds to us). With this final addition of the weeds, Friedman’s became the bane of Amsterdam’s existence.
We think these plant tubs were added outside the restaurant to protect the outdoor seating from the lay people that pass on the sidewalk. God forbid they have to look at youthful Barnard women trek to campus while enjoying an overpriced salad. We understand privacy is important, but do we see plant tubs at Community or Le Monde? No.
We can get past the idea that we may be obnoxious to restaurant goers. However, it’s the space these tubs take up on the sidewalk that continues to drive us mad. Slapping our faces with their sharp ends, these plants protrude out into the sidewalk, leaving only about a foot of walking space left for pedestrians. Every morning as we walk to class or work, we are slapped in the face (literally) or unwarrantedly tickled by Friedman’s.
If you think we’re exaggerating over how annoying these plants are, take a stroll down Amsterdam and experience the pain yourself. You’ll try to pass slow people and find there is no space to do so. You might even fall into one of the plant bins. Regardless, it will be a hellish experience.
We can only hope that cold weather means these plant tubs may disappear soon, but until then we will carry on and bare our plant scratches with pride.
Tags: flat top will still be #1 in our hearts apparently, forreal though this has been painful, friedman's, huuuuuuuge bush amiright, the bane of amsterdam is a pretty high title friedman's should be proud of that one, we have battle wounds, we tried so hard to give you guys a chance and you let us down again, we were all rooting for you tiffany, we've done nothing but be good to you....and also walk by obnoxiously on occasion, why you tryna block us out friedman's
Hurricane Joaquin has already destroyed parts of Charleston, South Carolina, and it’s not over yet. The storm is not expected to stop until Sunday afternoon, according to meteorologists. (The New York Times)
After the shooting at Umpqua Community College in Oregon last Thursday, college students were asked about their views on campus safety, and about their knowledge of emergency procedures. (USA Today)
America’s very first wind farm off the coast of Rhode Island is now experiencing safety problems. Deepwater Wind’s CEO has assured the public of their confidence in the project, but still. Wind turbines are huge. (The Washington Post)
One hilarious flight attendant’s performance of instructions for emergency landing has gone viral on Facebook and YouTube, and for very good reason. (The Huffington Post)
Joaquin Destroying Lives via Shutterstock
Tags: 3/4 of these are pretty concerning tbh, because it's great, but honestly everything's gonna be fine, can't be cheery every week, don't worry be happy, keep calm and carry on, keep calm and invest in wind turbines, keep calm and watch that flight attendant video, oh well, sorry guys and gals, this week's bwoglines brought to you by negative nellie
Written by Nadra Rahman
Black holes seem fake, but they’re actually real, visible, and somewhat understandable, thanks to scientists, large telescopes, and lots of math. Bwogger Nadra Rahman attended a biweekly “Stargazing and Lecture series” given by graduate student Shuo Zhang last night in Pupin, titled “Our Monster Black Hole.” Nadra lived to tell the tale (and dish some cool info).
Despite the cold, rain, and an overwhelming sense of doom as the shadow of Hurricane Joaquin loomed above us, the lecture room in Pupin was packed by 8 pm yesterday evening. The first announcement of the night, however, was a disappointing one: because of the rain, stargazing would be canceled. Instead, attendees were welcome to view the 3D AstroWall or hear an additional talk regarding recent developments on Mars.
After this announcement, graduate student Shuo Zhang launched into her presentation on Sagittarius A*, the supermassive black hole found in the center of the Milky Way. Zhang has used X-ray telescopes to study black holes for years, and pointed out that the discovery of Sagittarius A* as a black hole is a relatively recent one. Though scientists knew it was a bright radio source in 1974, it was not until 1995 and the development of new techniques that they knew for sure it was a supermassive black hole.
Scientists defined its borders and mass by studying the orbitals and positions of stars that circled the body. The best evidence for supporting its status as a supermassive black hole is the fact that it is a huge, enclosed mass (4.6 million times the mass of our Sun!).
Zhang revealed that the space around a black hole can be seen: stellar debris form a band of spinning matter around the black hole, creating a structure she termed “beast-like.” Additionally, the particles that form the band release powerful X- and gamma rays as they collide with one another.
This led to the idea of flares, the times when a black hole emits a large burst of X-rays and in the process, brightens up enormously, recalling the visual of fireworks. Zhang pointed out that Sagittarius A* is primarily in a “quiet state punctuated by some flaring activity.” Since she began monitoring black holes in 2012, Zhang has detected nine flares, each varying in duration and structure. She presented two theories as to why the flares occur: one involving the tearing apart of asteroids, and the other involving the reconfiguration of magnetic field lines around the black hole.
Tags: astrology, astronomy, black holes, black holes are real, gas, god, punk science kids, pupin is popping, science is cool!, stargazing canceled, stars, sucks for bahamas tho, sun, thank you to those who study the sky and explain it to us, the heavens, the sky is goth, wasn't even a real hurricane, we should all be astronomers
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