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Sep

5

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A photographic representation of standing on line at 1020.

Last night, it came to the attention of Senior Staff Writer Abby Rubel that some people refuse to stand “on line,” preferring instead to stand “in line.” After a heated exchange, she decided to defend her position below.

Saying that you’re “on line” is correct. The line of people is guided by an imaginary line on the floor, on which you are also presumably standing. Therefore, you are “on line.”

“In line,” the more common phrase indicating that you are queueing up, is also correct.

“Online” is not correct, because it means you are surfing the net in the middle of Butler 209 instead of doing the reading you promised yourself you’d do.

“Inline” is also not correct, because it is an adjective that does not indicate your location. If you are “inline,” you are probably a kind of roller skate. Or a computing term, which means you probably actually took a coding class. Good for you for stretching your comfort zone! (Unless you’re CS, in which case, good for you for fulfilling your graduation requirements.)

So let’s just chill out about this. It’s not like when people mix up “less” and “fewer.”

Standing in/on line at 1020 via Flickr

Sep

5

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Deep breath, first-years.

It’s the first week of classes, and we know what that means: everyone’s desperately trying to get off the waitlist and into their first-choice classes. Senior Staff Writer Abby Rubel has some advice.

  1. Seriously consider your chances. What’s your class standing? How big is the class? How far down are you on the waitlist? If you’re a first-year trying to get into a small seminar, you likely won’t. (Sorry. We’ve all got to pay our dues.) If you’re trying to get into a large lecture and you’re pretty high on the waitlist, the odds are much better.
  2. Think about your reasons for taking this class. Is this something you’re demonstrably passionate about? Or does the class just seem easy and fit with your schedule? If it’s the former, it’s easier to persuade a professor that you deserve preference. If it’s the latter, try to come up with a more convincing reason.
  3. Decide how to contact the professor in question. Office hours has the benefit of showing more effort because you actually cared to show up, but you have to know what you want to say. This also involves finding out when their office hours are. If you go to the first class, it’s usually on the syllabus or at least mentioned. Also, go to the first class if at all possible. Even if you have four classes that day. It shows commitment to the class. Email allows you to consider carefully what you say and phrase it eloquently, but is less personal and shows less effort. Don’t be afraid to flatter them a little bit. You do really want to take this class, right? There’s a reason for that.
  4. Contact the professor! Keep your fingers crossed. If you don’t get in, don’t freak out. There are tons of amazing classes here.

Sample email after the jump!

Sep

5

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How dorms without AC feel.

It’s too hot to write a proper byline. Enjoy this morning’s Bwoglines!

Happening in the World: Typhoon Jebi, the strongest typhoon to hit Japan since 1993, made landfall yesterday. So far, it has killed 8 people and injured scores more. Flights are grounded and over a million people are without power. (Voice of America)

Happening in the US: Today is the second day of Judge Brett Kavanaugh’s confirmation hearing. Yesterday’s hearing was tumultuous, with protesters screaming from the gallery and contentious debate between Democrats and Republicans. Learn more about day one here and prepare yourself for day two. (NY Times)

Happening in NYC: The US Open continues! Serena Williams made it to the semifinals yesterday, while Roger Federer lost to a virtually unknown player. (ESPN)

Happening on Campus: Lots and lots and lots and lots of auditions! See Bwog’s compilation here.

Overseen/Overheard: On college walk, spoken by a clearly drunk girl: “OK, only SOMETIMES do I go to school drunk.”

Book recommendation of the day: Even Cowgirls Get the Blues, by Tom Robbins. Both funny and meaningful, with characters who leap off the page. I recommend this book to everyone.

Photo via Flickr

Sep

3

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Bwog this morning.

Hope you all enjoyed your last night of NSOP! Those of you who insisted on going to Mel’s in spite of that line: we admire your devotion to Mel’s o’clock. Nurse your hangovers with blue Gatorade, a bagel, and today’s Waking Up Sleeping Late With Bwog.

Today’s Highlights:

  • Central Park OutingJoin COÖP (Columbia Outdoor Orientation Program) leaders on a trek to the wilderness of New York City: Central Park. Head over to the Great Lawn any time between 1 and 4 pm for some outdoor games and activities, or just bring a blanket and enjoy the last day of freedom before classes.
  • EcoReps Sale, Part II: The sale started at 9 am, with some brave souls lining up as early as 6 am. The really good stuff (minifridges, etc.) is probably already gone, but you never know what you’ll find. The sale ends at 5 and is in the Wien lounge. BRING CASH.

One Thing To Do Before GraduatingGo to Riverside Park around 6 pm with some food and enjoy all the dogs walking by with their owners. The food is important because it attracts the dogs and then you can pet them (with the owners’ permission of course).

From The Archives: Beta blasted Disney music at the wee hours of the morning, much to the chagrin of the frat’s neighbors. And there’s a video.

Cute Riverside Dog via Bwog Archives

Sep

2

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Onyx, one of Columbia’s finest dance troupes!

NSOP is winding down. Upperclassmen are moving in, first-years are starting to freak out about classes, and the Orientation Leaders are looking forward to cutting up their NSOP shirts. Not much going on today, but plenty of mixers (not the kind you drink at EC) to enjoy this afternoon.

Today’s Highlights:

  • JJ’s Place is open! Enjoy the most fried food Columbia has to offer from 12-8 pm today. You’ll be going here plenty during the year especially if you live in John Jay, but it’s never too early to start on JJ’s mozz sticks. (And did you know it used to be a bar?)
  • First-Generation Students and Allies MixerAnyone who identifies as a first-generation student or an ally of this group should head to Satow, in Lerner, at 1 pm. Learn about resources and programs and meet new friends!
  • Latinx Students and Allies Mixer555 Lerner Hall at 4-5 pm. Learn about resources, programs, new friends, etc.
  • Arab and Middle Eastern Students and Allies Mixer: Satow Room, Lerner Hall, 3-4 pm. See above for description.
  • Mixed Heritage Students and Allies Mixer: Whoever wrote the Guidebook description for these mixers copy-pasted them. If this sounds like you, head over to 555 Lerner Hall from 4-5 pm.
  • Office of the University Chaplain Information Session: 4-5 pm, 2nd floor ramp, Lerner Hall. Learn about what the university chaplain actually does, as well as the religious community on campus. Fun fact: the Chaplain’s Office is one of the confidential resources available on campus.
  • LGBTQ Students and Allies Mixer555 Lerner Hall, 6-7 pm. Another mixer! Say it with me: learn about resources and programs on campus and meet new friends!
  • Performance Showcase: Head to Roone Arledge Auditorium (where we’re sure you’ve been a lot this week) for performances from a wide variety of campus groups! Columbia is a pretty talented community, so enjoy.

One Thing To Do Before Graduating: Hold a soirée on the terrace behind Mudd. It’s the next best thing to being on the Mudd roof. (RIP.)

From the Archives: Once, Bwog spotted a hawk. She was beautiful. She was majestic. We live for the day that we will see her again.

Apr

30

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The University Senate adopted a resolution on Friday proposing a ban on all relationships between faculty and undergraduates. Any relationship between “officers of instruction, research, administration, and the libraries,” “graduate students with appointments as student officers of instruction and research,” and “graduate teaching assistants, postdoctoral fellows, graduate and undergraduate teaching assistants, and tutors, during any period of time they are teaching, advising or supervising an undergraduate student” must be reported to the Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action Office (EOAA). Before the resolution becomes University policy, however, it must be reviewed by the General Affairs Committee and the EEOA.

This action comes after William Harris, a professor of Greco-Roman history, retired as part of a sexual harassment lawsuit settlement. The case raised questions about what Columbia does to prevent students from being exploited by professors and the process in which the University punishes professors who exploit students romantically and/or sexually.

The resolution addresses the power imbalance, noting that: “because of the power differential, romantic and sexual relationships between faculty and students are highly susceptible to being experienced as non-consensual or coercive.” If university workers do not comply with this policy, repercussions could include “disciplinary action up to and including termination and may adversely affect decisions on promotion and tenure.”

But what does that mean for undergrad TAs?

Apr

30

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Sports Editor Abby Rubel supports the achievements of Columbia Athletics because they generally did well this weekend.

The faces of champions.

Men’s Tennis: The Lions (17-4, 6-1 Ivy) defeated Cornell (10-11, 3-4 Ivy) 4-0 to earn a piece of the Ivy title along with Dartmouth. Columbia took the doubles point thanks to a win from first-year Jack Lin and junior William Matheson. Three singles victories from Lin, fellow first-year Austen Huang, and sophomore Adam Ambrozy sealed the win for Columbia. Dartmouth (20-5, 6-1 Ivy) already clinched the Ivy’s automatic berth in the NCAA tournament, but Columbia could earn an at-large bid on Tuesday. This is the fifth consecutive Ivy title for men’s tennis.

Softball: Columbia (21-19, 13-8 Ivy) went 2-1 in their series against Cornell (13-23, 8-10 Ivy), but that wasn’t good enough to send them to the Ivy League Championship series. Saturday’s games were both blowouts—Columbia took them 15-10 and 15-7. Four different players hit home runs in the first game, including a two-run homer from first-year Maria Pagane that rounded out an eight-run third inning. The Lions had similar success in game two, scoring seven runs in the third and holding on for the victory. Game three was a heartbreaking 10-9 loss in the eighth inning. Cornell struck out all three Columbia players in the top of the inning before scoring a walk-off run.

Lightweight Rowing: All four varsity eight teams came in first on Saturday. The varsity eight held a commanding five second lead despite a 4-8 mile per hour headwind. The second and third varsity eights won by almost ten seconds each, and the fourth varsity eight led by four seconds. The second varsity remains undefeated, while the first varsity added to its win streak, which is now at four. Lightweight rowing has next weekend off before the EARC Sprints.

Baseball: lost 3-2, won 20-4, won 8-6 against Penn
Lacrosse: lost 22-16 against Princeton
Women’s Rowing: Varsity eight finished fourth at EAWRC Sprints
Heavyweight Rowing: Varsity eight came in fourth against George Washington, Navy, and Hobart

Much more impressive than Dartmouth via gocolumbialions.com

Apr

27

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Marcellus is awesome.

Shakespeare nerd and Senior Staffer Abby Rubel couldn’t resist checking out KCST’s spring production of  Hamlet

Editor’s note, 4/28 2:15 pm: One line in the review about Hamlet and Horatio’s relationship and the caption of the photo depicting these two characters have been changed; this line and caption utilized a homophobic trope.

Anyone who knows any line of Shakespeare knows at least part of Hamlet’s famous soliloquy: “To be, or not to be, that is the question,” goes the speech. As powerful as it is written on the page, it’s somehow even more compelling delivered on the steps of Earl Hall, with Hamlet, played by Bailey Coleman (BC ’19), lit dramatically from below.

Every year, the King’s Crown Shakespeare Troupe puts on a production of Shakespeare using Columbia’s campus as the set. Ensemble members lead the audience from location to location. This year’s show, Hamlet, is much more well-known that last year’s As You Like It, and there’s baggage that comes with that. After all, how could you possibly deliver the same lines as Kenneth Branagh?

Hamlet is the story of a prince of Denmark whose uncle, Claudius, kills his father and marries his mother. Hamlet’s father’s ghost appears to him and asks that Hamlet revenge him. Hamlet agrees. What follows is, of course, a tragedy. Hamlet pretends to be mad and kills Polonius (the king’s advisor), which drives Ophelia (his lady-love) insane. In revenge, Ophelia’s brother, Laertes, conspires with Claudius to kill Hamlet in a fencing match. As backup, Claudius poisons a glass of wine. Unsurprisingly, the whole scheme goes wrong and everyone dies except Horatio, Hamlet’s best friend. But you already knew that.

Read more about ghosts, gays, and color theory after the jump.

Apr

27

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In addendum to the ongoing strike and with no clear end in sight, a petition has been drafted to extend the strike. Student workers predict, should the strike be extended, it will continue until the end of the term. 

Graduate and undergraduate students march in solidarity on Low Plaza

A petition has been circulating among graduate student workers which calls for a vote on extending the graduate students’ strike until the end of the semester.

The petition argues that the strike has gained enough momentum to continue, and that ending it on Monday “risks turning our strike into a symbolic protest.” It calls for graduate workers to instead “send the union-busting machine that is Columbia a clear message: time is up.” It cites the struggle of NYU graduate workers and the West Virginia teachers’ strike as examples that prove that an extended strike is the only way to force Columbia to the bargaining table.

The petition clearly lays out what an extended strike would mean for the university: “As TAs, that means while we will agree hand over all relevant teaching materials, we will refuse to proctor exams and refuse to grade any course materials. As RAs, we will continue to withhold twenty hours of work as we are doing right now, affirming that the quality of our research depends on our living conditions and the level of respect given to us by the administration.”

Although the petition argues vehemently in favor of extending the strike, its stated purpose is calling a vote on the matter. “In the interest of democracy and collective power, we as rank and file members call on the union to facilitate a vote on extending our strike until the end of term.”

According to a tip, a vote will be called if the petition gets 916 votes. Right now, it has 183 signatures from graduate workers, seven from professors, and 365 from “allies.”

The text of the petition is below.

Apr

27

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Ready for anything

Classes are almost over, the strike is (maybe) almost over, and most Columbia teams are finishing up their regular season! 

Men’s Tennis: If Columbia (16-4, 5-1 Ivy) wins at Cornell (10-10, 3-3 Ivy) on Saturday at 1 pm, they’ll split the Ivy title with Dartmouth (20-5, 6-1 Ivy). Dartmouth, however, has already clinched the Ivy’s automatic berth to the NCAA championships thanks to a victory over Columbia on April 15, which snapped the Light Blue’s 22-match conference win streak. Columbia has won the Ivy title for the past four years, although it was shared with Cornell and Harvard last year. Dartmouth hasn’t won a title since 1997 and has only ever won three titles. Columbia and Cornell both dominated last weekend, winning both matches.

Softball: The Lions (19-18, 11-7 Ivy) will face off against Cornell (12-21, 7-8 Ivy) this weekend to determine if they’ll head to the Ivy League Championship Series. Right now, the Lions are in third place behind Harvard and Dartmouth. Only the top two teams go to the series. Harvard also ends its regular season this weekend, while Dartmouth will also play a series against Brown next weekend. The Light Blue will need to have a better record than at least one of those teams to go to the series; they lose a head-to-head record tiebreaker. Regardless of what happens this weekend, the Lions are guaranteed their first winning record in program history.

Lightweight Rowing: The crew team will row its last race of the regular season on Saturday with a home race against Drexel. Following last weekend’s victory over Dartmouth, the varsity eight has won all official cup races this season for the second time ever, and the first time since 2003. Drexel’s varsity eight lost to both Temple and Saint Joseph’s last weekend in the Bergen Cup race. They also lost to Columbia last season in the first two varsity races, but were triumphant in the third.

Another sports photo via gocolumbialions.com

Apr

23

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LOOK AT THOSE PANTS!

Columbia had a rough weekend. Sports Editor Abby Rubel gives you the deets.

Men’s Golf: The Lions performed poorly this weekend, finishing in last place at the Ivy League Championships with a score of 944. Yale took first place since the first time since 2011 with a score of 880. Columbia particularly struggled in the first round, scoring 332 where the other teams scored in the low 300s. (Princeton, which came in seventh place, scored the next-highest with 319.) And because their second and third round scores were on par with the other Ancient Eight teams, they couldn’t catch up. Individually, first-year Arjun Puri lead the team with a score of 24 over par.

Women’s Golf: The women’s team had a successful weekend at the Ivy League Championships, coming in fourth thanks to a strong performance from senior Nancy Xu. Xu tied for seventh place individually and shot a 73 on Saturday, keeping Columbia’s score that day low and putting the team within range of third-place Brown. But Brown shot 303 on Sunday to Columbia’s 307—good enough to hang on to fourth place but not good enough to catch the Bruins. Princeton won the tournament after a tie-breaker hole with Harvard.

Heavyweight Rowing: Columbia lost the race for the Doc Lusins Trophy for the eighth year in a row on Saturday. The Lions came in third place in all three of the day’s races, losing to both Boston University (the current holder of the trophy) and Syracuse. In the Varsity Eight race, Boston beat out Syracuse by just half a second, while Columbia came in eight seconds later. The other two races went similarly poorly, with the Light Blue coming in third by five or more seconds each time.

Men’s Lightweight Rowing: beat Cornell and MIT, beat Dartmouth
Baseball: won 2-0, lost 10-5, lost 7-6 against Princeton
Softball: won 9-1, won 9-0, lost 9-0 against Princeton
Men’s Tennis: won 4-0 at Brown, won 4-0 at Yale
Women’s Tennis: won 5-2 against Brown, won 6-1 against Yale
Lacrosse: won 14-12 against Brown

Apr

20

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(And also rowing edition.)

Sports Editor Abby Rubel brings you this week’s sports update, before you enjoy your 4/20 too much to remember it.

Men’s Golf: The Ivy League Championships got underway this morning at 10:00. The tournament will continue tomorrow and Sunday at 9:00 am each day. The Lions won the tournament most recently in 2014, although the team came in seventh place last year. (Harvard won.) Senior Joshua Suh, sophomore Nick Brisebois, and first-years Dan Terrell, John Robertson, and Arjun Puri will compete for the Light Blue. The Lions had a tough schedule before this, which Head Coach Rich Mueller hopes will pay off in the tournament. The winning team will head to the NCAA Championships.

Women’s Golf: The women’s team is also competing at the Ivy League Championships this weekend. They teed off at 8:30 am this morning and will start at the same time on Saturday and Sunday. Last year, Princeton dominated the tournament and the Lions came in third, thanks in part to a fifth-place individual performance from then-senior Jackie Chulya. The Lions have only won one title (2007) since they started competing in 2004. Competing for Columbia will be senior Nancy Xu, junior captain Amy Ding, sophomore Emily Chu, and first-years Katie Lee, Qingyi Symba Xu, and Kim Chiang.

Heavyweight Rowing: Columbia will compete for the Doc Lusins Trophy on Saturday against Boston University, currently ranked ninth. They’ll also race against Syracuse University, currently ranked 14th, although Syracuse does not compete for the trophy. Doc Lusins was captain of Columbia’s heavyweight rowing team in 1959, and the trophy was established in 2003 by his son who rowed for Boston. Boston has beaten Columbia for the trophy seven years in a row.

Photo via gocolumbialions.com

Apr

19

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List of demands.

Members of 24/7 Columbia, an organization dedicated to improving healthcare on campus, are holding a sit-in in Lerner Hall tonight to protest “the lack of in-person, accessible healthcare,” according to a statement sent to Bwog.

The group’s goals are the creation of a 24/7 rape crisis center and health center and round-the-clock access to CPS, as shown in the poster above.

Beyond constant access to mental health services and other campus healthcare providers, 24/7 Columbia is worried about the “violence and punitive discipline” students face “when attempting to access health resources on campus.”

The Lerner protesters argue that Columbia cannot be a “leading academic institutions” until it addresses their demands and provides 24/7 healthcare.

A Bwog staffer will provide updates as the situation develops.

The full statement is printed below.

Apr

16

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This image just resonates with me.

Sports Editor Abby Rubel stops tanning to bring you the latest from Athletics.

Baseball: The Lions (12-21, 8-4 Ivy) swept Brown (7-19, 3-9 Ivy) this weekend in Rhode Island. Columbia is now second in the Ivy League standings, a game behind Harvard. Brown remained in seventh place. The Lions dominated the first game 8-2. Brown attempted a comeback in the bottom of the ninth with the score 8-1, but only scored once. The second game was closer: a 5-4 win for the Lions. Brown took the lead in the bottom of the fifth partly thanks to a fielding error, making the score 4-1. But Columbia came back in the top of the seventh, scoring three runs to tie the game. A bunt from sophomore Julian Bury in the top of the ninth pushed a runner home and the Lions held the Bruins scoreless in the bottom of the inning to win the game. That trend continued through the last game, which Columbia won 2-0.

Men’s Tennis: Columbia’s undefeated streak ended Sunday with a 4-3 loss to Dartmouth, following a 4-1 victory over Harvard the day before. Columbia only lost the doubles point to Harvard, winning four of six singles matches. The other two were unfinished, including Victor Pham’s match. Pham also lost his match on Sunday in two sets, as did Jackie Tang. Columbia’s points came from doubles, where they won two of three matches, leaving the third unfinished. Junior William Matheson and first-year Austen Huang rounded out the Light Blue’s points, but it wasn’t enough to stop the Crimson.

Track and Field: The Lions were highly successful at both the Ocean State Invitational and the Metropolitan Championships. Although team scores are not available for the former, the Light Blue recorded a number of individual victories. Senior Nell Crosby came in first place in the 3000 meter steeplechase and the women had three other top finishes. Sam Ritz won the men’s mile race with a time of 4:03.45. Both the men’s and women’s team came in fifth out of a field of 13 teams. Highlights include victories in the triple jump and pole vault for the men and in the triple jump, long jump, pole vault, and high jump for the women. The triple jump and long jump wins both belong to sophomore Maryam Hassan. The Lions also took the top three spots in the women’s 100 meter hurdles.

Softball: won 8-2, 7-0, 5-3 at Brown
Men’s Golf: 10th place out of 12 teams at the Penn State Invitational
Men’s Lightweight Rowing: beat Yale and Penn
Men’s Heavyweight Rowing: beat Penn, lost to Yale
Lacrosse: lost 19-4 at Penn
Women’s Tennis: lost 4-3 at Harvard, lost 4-3 at Dartmouth

Photo via gocolumbialions.com

Apr

14

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Two months ago, the Graduate Workers of Columbia-UAW (GWC-UAW) announced their plan to hold a strike vote. Last night, the results of that vote were tallied: 93% voted to authorize a strike. The goal of the strike would be to force Columbia to recognize their right to unionize.

According to the GWC-UAW, 1,968 valid votes were cast; 1,832 of them were in favor of a strike. Only 136 “no” votes were cast. GWC-UAW calls this overwhelming support for a strike “a clear and decisive mandate from a majority of research and teaching assistants at Columbia.”

In January, Columbia declined to bargain with the union. Now, with finals fast approaching, graduate students hope to force its hand.

Photo via columbiagradunion.org

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