Apr

30

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The House of Blue and White

The House of Blue and White

In the past few weeks revving up to finals, the number of open reservation slots of group study rooms in Butler, NoCo, and Lehman Social Sciences Library (yes, you can do that) have dwindled down to almost nothing. While most reservation titles are similarly sparse—think “study,” “finals,” “group project”—the increased pool of library dwellers and friend groups looking for a private study spaces have titled their library sojourns with unique names. Either that, or they’re delirious with studying. One or the other, right?

Below you’ll find pictures of reservations with either one-off or consistently unique names. All reservations for the week can be found here.

Sig Nu

What else is up?

Apr

30

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group1

V122 tries to reassure us that yes, we do actually belong at Columbia.

Arts Editor Gowan Moïse attended the 122nd Annual Varsity Show on opening night. Here is Bwog’s review of the production, as well as Moïse’s comments on the show.

Last night marked the opening night of a three day run of the 122nd Annual Varsity Show, co-written by Anika Benkov (CC ’16) and Michael Rodriguez (CC ’16) and directed by Jonah Weinsten (CC ’16), with lyrics and composition by Jake Chapman (CC ’16) and Sofia Geck (BC ’17). At the start of the performance, the curtains slowly opened to reveal four portraits of Columbia’s “founding fathers” Alexander Hamilton, John Jay, Robert Livingston, and King George II discussing their accomplishments and achievements while disparaging the current state of Columbia. The final lines delivered by the founding fathers in the first narrative scene give an ominous warning about  the show to follow: “This is a tale of tradition / at the school of white and blue / so watch if you dare, but just beware: / the past isn’t done with you!”

Following this warning and narrative opening, we’re immediately introduced to the main character, Jenny Park (April Cho, CC ’17), a first generation sophomore attempting to find some sense of belonging at Columbia. Even as she struggles to maintain order at her work-study job in Hartley, she expresses dreams of greatness and a desire to be like the notorious Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg (“Notorious”).

Don’t we all want to be like RBG?

Apr

30

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Deep in thought

Deep in thought

PrezBo began the last University Senate plenary of the year with a collection of remarks on current events.

On the passing of Bill Campbell

“There was no more dedicated alumn of Columbia than Bill,” said PrezBo about the long-time Columbia trustee who died recently. “He really knew how to make organizations work,” said PrezBo. “When it came to making things happen and protecting me and the institution, there was just nobody better.”

PrezBo attended a memorial service for Campbell on Monday in Palo Alto (Campbell was involved in Silicon Valley), and he asked for a moment of silence at the plenary.

On Manhattanville

“On May 2nd, I’ll send out a statement saying that on May 2nd 1896, Morningside Heights campus was dedicated, and we are now beginning the process of dedicating the new campus in Manhattanville, and this will go on all through next year, as we begin to move into the buildings,” said PrezBo about his Manhattanville plants.

The Mind, Brain, and Behavior Institute, the Lenfest Center for the Arts, and the forum building “will all be completed in the next year and a half,” according to PrezBo.

What about the freaking statue

Apr

30

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You better call Prezbo with the good hair

You better call Prezbo with the good hair

Any attempts at getting work done are again wrecked by another notable album release. Drake released his fourth studio album, Views, on Apple Music, yet again leaving us in our feelings for the weekend. (Billboard)

Loose alpaca in Massachusetts has been captured, still no word on who owns it.

Construction workers cleaning pipes in Spain accidentally discover 1,300 pounds of ancient Roman coins dating back as far as the third century. (Huffington Post)

After protests from students, Yale has decided not to rename Calhoun College, a residential college named after a pro-slavery senator. (USA Today)

Apr

29

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Well if it's cool enough to have its own geotag...

Well if it’s cool enough to have its own geotag…

Even with finals quickly approaching, Staff Writer and avid Shakespearian-theatergoer Jessa Nootbaar took a few hours out of her Thursday night to walk around Columbia, following KCST’s spring show production of “Macbeth.” Here are her thoughts on last night’s performance of the bloody rise and fall of the Scotsman himself.

Shakespeare’s “Macbeth” (or, “the Scottish play,” for those still too superstitious to say the name) is a classic story following the downfall of a man too ambitious and power-hungry for his own good. The play opens as the titular character, Macbeth, and his companion Banquo return from battle, where they stumble upon three witches, the Weird Sisters, who predict greatness and power for both Macbeth and Banquo’s sons. These predictions begin to come true as Macbeth is granted new titles of nobility, but he and his wife feel that they must take matters into their own hands to ensure that he will become king, as the witches divined. They murder King Duncan, thus beginning a string of bloody killings.

I had seen many renditions of the tragedy before last night, but KCST’s travelling play was a wholly new interpretation on the established classic. The audience began the night on Low Plaza but were led by the ensemble from location to location, where actors waited, illuminated in the night. The occasional student wandered into a scene, only to look up from their phone with an expression of total confusion, having found themselves surrounded by oddly-dressed students chanting and waving around metal pipes. The student would scurry away, and the audience would laugh. (As a note for students: should you run into “Macbeth” during tonight’s or tomorrow night’s performance, please be quiet and respectful as you pass by, as the actors do not have mics.) But how was the actual performance?

Apr

29

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12891738_506197129560492_7779187276616729826_o

“& swan song” will leave you emotionally breathless

Last night, dance-enthusiast and Staff Writer Jennie Nugent has the distinct pleasure of attending “& swan song,” a dance composition of five dancers produced through the CoLab Performing Arts Collective. Navigating the heavy emotional themes of the performance, here are Jennie’s thoughts on the dance.

After attending “& swan song” last night in the Glicker-Milstein Theatre, it took a while to sort through the emotions brought out by the evocative dance performance. The performance is described as looking at “violence and death as juxtaposed next to that of tenderness and intimacy,” and in its attempt to explore those weighty themes, the show completely delivered. The performers carefully treaded the line between brilliant and bizarre, and the performance called upon the audience to tap into their own experiences and emotions to engage with the themes of the dances.

Following the performance, the audience gave the performers a true standing ovation, and snippets of high praise were heard from the majority of the audience on their way out of the doors. Personally, I thought the performance was thoroughly fantastic, and I would highly recommend it to anyone willing to face some heavy themes and their own emotions. In order to help future viewers prepare for the ultra-modernism they are about to enjoy at this performance, I want to address four points regarding elements of the performance and how to get the most out of attending the show: So what are the four points?

Apr

29

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In an email from Dean Valentini, the university has just announced that Michael Pippenger, Dean of the Office of Global Programs, will be departing for a position at the University of Notre Dame. Pippenger originally came to Columbia College in 2006 as the Dean of Fellowship Programs, and later became the Dean of Undergraduate Global Programs in 2011. During his time at Columbia, his work focused on globalizing the Columbia experience as well as overseeing advising for fellowships.

More recently, the Office of Undergraduate Global Programs has been criticized for its alleged lack of support for students during the application process for prestigious fellowships, such as Rhodes Scholarships. The former head of the Fellowship Office, Paul Bohlmann, left Columbia in 2014, and Pippenger acknowledged in a 2014 meeting with CCSC that the office had been “chaotic” since then.

In his new role at Notre Dame, Peppinger will be doing similar work to continue the globalization of the university and to expose students to international experiences.

You can read the university’s full statement below:

Apr

29

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Just looking at these talented dancers makes us feel a little inadequate...

Just looking at these talented dancers makes us feel a little inadequate…

Last night, Staff Writer Becky Novik attended Onyx‘s spring showcase, and was blown away by the talent and energy of the performers. The group’s second performance is tonight at 8:30pm in the Lerner Black Box.

Long story short: I didn’t want it to end and was genuinely sad when it did.

And now the long story:

For their spring showcase, Onyx absolutely killed it with four unique sets of hip-hop dance filled with hair flips, sharp choreography, and thoroughly infectious energy.

Before any dancing started, the hosts of the evening, which included two Onyx dance troupe alumnae, instructed the audience to get as loud as they wanted to in support and appreciation for the dancers.  The second Onyx came on, it was clear that the audience didn’t need any encouragement to get loud for the performers.  The connection that the Onyx dancers made with an audience was, alone, more than enough to elicit screams and cheers. And then the dancing started.

Tell us more about that dancing though

Apr

29

Israel-Palestine Discourse smallDefining the Discourse
Analyzing Columbia’s most polarizing issue
by Yasemin Akçagüner

For the first time this year, Israeli Apartheid Week—organized by Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) and Jewish Voice for Peace (JVP)—was protested not just by pro-Israel students on campus, but also by a blow-up Pinocchio doll rumored to cost around $800.

IAW, as the organizers call it, has been an annual fixture since 2005, marked by heated op-eds in Spectator, scandals as groups accuse each other of tearing down posters, and aggressive confrontations as pro-Israeli and pro-Palestinian groups literally stand in opposition on Low Steps. Traditionally, tables supporting Israel face the mock-apartheid wall that Students for Justice in Palestine put up every year. But this year, the drama was exacerbated by two new developments. One is the formation of Columbia University Apartheid Divest (CUAD), which “calls for the University to divest its stocks, funds, and endowment from companies that profit from the State of Israel’s ongoing system of settler colonialism, military occupation, and apartheid law.” CUAD is embedded in the global Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel. The second is a Columbia chapter of the group Students Supporting Israel, which arrived on campus in January, just as CUAD was kicking off.

“When you have the ability, you start a BDS campaign because it’s never not an appropriate time,” says Shezza Abboushi Dallal, BC’16. SJP and JVP decided to launch a BDS campaign on campus at the start of the semester, as they felt they had the manpower to organize on a larger scale than in years past. Shezza, who is a prominent SJP member, says that SJP’s continued growth, combined with JVP’s recent formation, puts the movement in a strong position to pursue this goal.

Learn more about other activist groups on campus after the jump.

Apr

29

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You used to swim along in ignorance

This poor fish is about to be exploited by Pixar, probably

A “suspicious white powder” was discovered in Trump Tower and thoroughly investigated by emergency personnel. Sounds like a party in EC! (NY Daily News)

Those crazy scientists have done it again, and by “it” we mean they discovered a new species of weevil and named it after a Star Wars character. That probably doesn’t actually happen that often, but now there’s a species of weevil named “Chewbacca,” so we’re not complaining. (EurekAlert)

A Trump rally in Orange County turned violent when a huge number of protestors showed up, even though the area is largely Republican. That probably doesn’t bode well for the guy’s campaign, and we’re OK with that. (CBS8)

“Finding Dory” is coming to the big screen this summer, but Disney released some new footage to tide you Nemo-lovers over until then! (Inside the Magic)

User: Elma/Wikimedia Commons/CC-BY-2.0

Apr

28

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Bernadette Mayer in her self-proclaimed natural habitat

Bernadette Mayer in her self-proclaimed natural habitat

Bernadette Mayer is a stream-of-consciousness poet and writer from Brooklyn. Last night, she came to speak at Columbia for “A Reading and Conversation with Bernadette Mayer,” sponsored by the Heyman Center for the Humanities. Bwog sent Daily Editor and poetry enthusiast Lila Etter to listen.

Not only has Bernadette Mayer written over 27 collections of poetry; she has also received a Guggenheim Fellowship, directed the St. Mark’s Poetry Project, and taught at various prestigious institutions across America, including the New School for Social Research, Long Island University, and Miami University. Ignoring all her numerous accomplishments, the event description simply read: “Bernadette Mayer will be reading from her newly re-released Sonnets.” So I knew little of what to expect in terms of my experience on Wednesday night. I walked up the stairs of Dodge Hall to the fifth floor, eager to see what the infamous 501 would be like. Although I love the Music & Arts library, often study there, and have been  invited to 501 for various Facebook events (mostly art gallery openings and writing workshops), I’d never made it to the room itself. As I walked into 501, I realized that no amount of buttons and pins on my backpack–promoting Bernie, feminism, Barnard Divest, etc.–could save me now.

I felt more out of place than I had in a while. In a crowd of at least fifty I was one of only a few undergrads. Nearly everyone was impeccably dressed. This is not to say that the audience members weren’t varied. Far from it. There were polished young women with ombréd, fringed bangs, pin stripe blouses, and perfectly applied lipstick. There were a few unshaven scruffy young artists with terrible hair. There were SoHo-ites with black leather jackets. There were even women about Bernadette’s age, with Meryl Streep-like dignity, dressed elegantly in loafers and colorful scarves.

Who else came to see the other Bernie?

Apr

28

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In your typical Reid double

In your typical Reid double

We reviewed Sulz and Brooks, but those two dorms aren’t quite enough to house all the Barnard first-years – pushed in between them is Reid, a tiny dorm with surprisingly big rooms. (And, less surprisingly, no AC.)

Location: 3009 Broadway (The Quad).

Nearby dorms: Sulz, Brooks, Hewitt, the 600’s.

Stores and restaurants: MoWillies, 116th halal cart, Vine, M2M, Starbucks, Sweetgreen.

Cost: $9,230

Amenities:

  • Bathrooms: A gender-neutral or women’s-only restroom for each floor (decided by residents). Cleaned daily. Sulz residents on the Sulz-Reid will likely also use your bathroom, leading to the occasional shower line.
  • AC/Heating: No AC. Some heating. Basically, get ready to sweat during the warmer months.
  • Kitchen/Lounge: One on every floor of the quad, a short walk (to Sulz) away. Features a stove, an oven, a sink, and a microwave, all of which get very disgusting very quickly. There are a couple of couches and tables as well – beware of mystery stains/sticky areas. TV, with an HDMI cable for your movie-watching needs. A nice hangout spot, despite the questionable smells.
  • Laundry: Each floor has a small laundry room between Reid and Brooks (one washer, two dryers) and a larger one in Sulz (two washers, two dryers – or more, if you’re on the eighth floor.) The machines take laundry cards, which can be refilled (with cash) at machines on the first floor.
  • Computers/printers: Same as the rest of the quad – two computer labs in the basement, with two printers (usually functional, but be wary of low paper warnings.)
  • Intra-transportation: Two elevators in lobby. Slower and smaller than the Sulz elevators, but every floor has signs showing which floor the elevator is currently on, which is a plus.
  • Hardwood/carpet: Carpet in hallways, grey linoleum in rooms, tile in bathroom. Same as the rest of the quad.
    WiFi: Yeah, but beware of Barnard Secure – it’s liable to cut out in the middle of your Netflix session.
  • Bonus: Easy access to the basement practice rooms (and vending machines!) as well as Brooks Lounge (on the first floor); water bottle filling machines; houses Well Woman and a lounge named after Zora Neale Hurston (the room itself isn’t particularly special, but what a cool lady, am I right?)

But what about those big rooms …?

Apr

28

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We see you, B&W illustrations

We see you, B&W illustrations

Perhaps one of the greatest collective action Columbia faces (aside from keeping the Butler bathrooms clean) is keeping WikiCU updated with relevant information. To solve this problem, CCSC and ESC will be hosting the 4th Annual Wikithon tonight from 5 PM until 8 PM in the John Jay Lounge. We heard free Dinosaur BBQ will be provided to participants, which is always a good enough reason for us to do anything.

Help keep the Columbia institutional wisdom alive and relevant by fixing up WikiCU old pages or creating your own. We wouldn’t be upset if someone wanted to take a stab at updating the Bwog page considering we’re lazy.

Poster via the Facebook event page

Apr

28

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What goofy things did Shamus say?

What goofy things did Shamus say?

It’s that time of month–errr, semester–again: our traditional call for closing remarks from your profs!

Have they been getting drunk and throwing up in the bushes?

Have they compared Ted Cruz to satan?

Have they reduced the whole semester into a single forlorn statement? (what did you actually learn?)

Have they had sex with any of you? (we made this up!)

Better, worse, whatever–we want to hear it. So send ’em in. Quotes or anecdotes. Include the class and the instructor’s name. Email tips@bwog.com, and we’ll handle the rest.

Enjoy reading week, and take good notes (for your sake and Bwog’s)!

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