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Jan

19

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Six members of the Columbia basketball team cheering from the sidelines

If Connor Voss isn’t your spirit animal we don’t know who is

As Columbia Men’s Basketball prepares for their next season, loyal supporters are getting ready to spend the next few months rooting for the Lions. Sports editor Ross Chapman previews what fans can expect in the upcoming season.

Last basketball season was one for the record books – or, one for the trophy cases. Thanks to an inspired performance by their four seniors, the Columbia Lions captured the CollegeInsider.com Tournament championship. While it wasn’t the NCAA, Columbia finally had a trophy to put in the case on the 4th floor of the Dodge Fitness Center. To follow up on such a strong season with a dominant senior class would be as hard a task as getting past UC Irvine’s 7’6″ center in the CIT finals.

But sometimes, the only way to follow up on your high expectations is to jump.

Who is that? How did he do that? Read more after the jump

Jan

19

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img January 19, 201711:54 amimg 1 Comments

A very sunny music library with two people chatting at the desk

Music is so fun!

In order to help you fulfill your New Year’s resolution of spending less time in Butler, Bwog is reviewing the study spaces around campus so you know where to go and where to avoid. First up, we look at the library at the top of Dodge, the Gabe M. Wiener Music and Arts Library.

Location: 701 Dodge Hall. Accessible Library.

Hours: Monday-Thursday, 9am-9pm; Friday, 9am-5pm; Saturday, 12pm-8pm; Sunday, 1pm-9pm

Contact: (212) 854-4711; [email protected]; http://library.columbia.edu/music; http://www.facebook.com/columbiamusiclibrary

Seats:

  • Total: 63 Seats
  • Tables: 24 Seats
  • Study Carrels: 19 Seats
  • Audiovisual Booths: 9 Seats
  • Computer Booths: 7 Seats
  • Overstuffed Corner Chairs: 4 Seats
  • Seats for Talking: 0 Seats, not a space for collaboration

(more…)

Dec

22

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A word cloud of all of the answers given by seniors to the cheese or oral sex question

Wordcloud of “Cheese or Oral Sex” answers – click for full size!

Bwog has been around for ten years, and no content has quite defined us like our Senior Wisdoms. We’ve seen some very good (and very bad) advice, but the posts are about more than just actual wisdom. Anyone who’s thought about writing a Senior Wisdom has inevitably had to contemplate – would I rather give up cheese or oral sex?

We’ve received many ridiculous answers. Some students would rather give up cheese – to quote Yoachim Haynes SEAS ’13, “Dairy products make me break out. Oral sex hasn’t done that to me yet…” Others know that they would rather sacrifice oral sex – Orli Matlow GS/JTS ’15 told us, “Cheese never asks for reciprocation, and what is the Lewinsky without the Mozzarella Cheese?” Others still avoid the question or give halfway answers, such as Yanyi Luo CC 13’s, “Both arguments would have holes in them.”

The answers are varied and hilarious, which is why few Bwog posts have fascinated me more than “Oral Sex or Cheese: The Truth Revealed?” In it, a mysterious student named Fromage ’13 analyzed hundreds of Senior Wisdom responses to see whether Columbia students preferred one over the other. They found that 42% of students would rather give up oral sex, compared to only 30% who would give up cheese. We’ve posted over 170 Senior Wisdoms since then – how do they change the numbers?

Graphs, school breakdowns, and gendered responses after the jump

Dec

20

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Has your friend made you a starter pack yet? Nah? Ok, sucks for you, but we made one that applies to the whole university. Here is is! Enjoy.

Starter packs look bad. However much effort you might put into finding the perfect objects is almost certainly more than what you put into arranging them on the Microsoft Paint canvas. To demonstrate the problems with current starter pack layouts, I present what the Morningside campus would look like if it were made in 2016.

How are you supposed to walk between classes? How is your eye supposed to traverse the canvas? I’m really not sure, but this artwork is made with as much care and attention as any other starter pack. (Click to enlarge.)

A map of Columbia, but everything is horribly placed and sized

this layout looks pretty good

Dec

19

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img December 19, 20168:53 pmimg 1 Comments

A picture of Columbia's Harmony Hall

Have you seen my dorm?

Columbia students really aren’t the best with maps. Whether we’re trying to figure out how Barnard works or asking international students for their images of America’s downfall, we’re learning at Bwog that you should probably have a map handy wherever you go instead of trying to remember it yourself. In this edition, we ask CC and Barnard students to fill out a map of Columbia’s dorms… they’re not pretty.

A brief presentation of our findings:

1. Nobody Knows where Harmony Is
Responding students called Harmony (on 110th) the following:
“Carlton Arms” (more than once)
“Hungarian”
“West Side” (more accurately, this should be the decaying husk of D’Agostino’s)
“Aquarius”
“Furnald”

2. Hartley? Wallach? Both
Getting Hartley and Wallach mixed up is basically a 50/50 chance.
Some students decided to label the two buildings together as “HartleyWallach.”
“John Jay” and “EC” were also some very wrong guesses.
At least they were recognized as a pair – our musician called them “Mi” and “Fa.”

See more Columbia foolishness and the full maps after the jump.

Dec

19

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Student sleeping on a pile of books

literally all of Bwog right now

It’s our final Field Notes of the season, and boy are we tired. Seriously. As we all get ready for the home stretch, we’re either getting way too much or way too little when it comes to catching Z’s. Here’s what happened on our wild weekends – as always, submit your own for the next edition to [email protected]

Sleep and Relaxation:

  • Slept for more than 9 hours.
  • Went to get a massage, but the music was too tonally directed for me to fully relax.
  • Went to the sauna in Dodge for the first time, 10/10 would recommend to a friend.
  • Fought my friend to have me let her sleep on her floor and her in her bed. We were both lying on the floor drunk and arguing for a solid 15 until decided would make sense for us both to sleep in bed.
  • Did no work because lack of sleep, and hangover. Made banana bread instead (success).
  • Spent all of Friday leading up to my 5pm final with my boyfriend under the guise that it would keep me relaxed and in a good headspace before the exam. It paid off.
  • Brought a soft blanket to study in the library and just petted it instead of studying.

Up next: food and food…stuffs.

Dec

17

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Kimberly Arkind squatting down to talk to some children in the audience

Talking up the future astronomers

NASA’s Kimberly Arkand headlined this semester’s last event in the Astronomy Department’s Public Outreach series. In her lecture, she tackled the question of how we visualize something as humongous and invisible as a supernova.

In Pupin 301, Arkand began her speech by telling us a bit about herself. While she started out interested in biology, she now works for NASA as a “data storyteller,” meaning she takes astronomical data and turns it into something understandable and/or pretty. For example, Arkand creates images like this one, which comes from the Chandra X-Ray Observatory at which she works. Not only do scientists have to convert x-ray data into 2-dimensional images, they also have to color them with an eye towards their audience. While blue generally indicates heat in a scientific context, images often assign red to heat and high energy due to cultural associations.

The tone of the lecture was light and focused on the children in the audience. There were, however, only half a dozen children in the hall. Arkand did not assume any specific astronomical knowledge of the crowd, which did indirectly reveal how much work Frontiers of Science does to set a scientific baseline in the Columbia community. Astronomical phenomena were described vividly – supernovas were stars “vomiting their guts out all over the universe.” Kimberly Arkand’s friendly vibe gave the whole event a Leslie Knope sort of feeling.

Check out how they really held the stars after the jump

Dec

10

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img December 10, 20163:11 pmimg 3 Comments

Image Description: I'm very sorry, I can't try to describe this.

believe it or not, this is an accurate representation of Latenite

Like Bwoggers before me, I was not truly prepared for the madness of Latenite. The comedy group for new and original student theatre put on their semesterly Anthology show, a collection of seven sketches written, directed, and acted by Columbia students. The pieces ranged from vulgar to absurd, in case their photo on Facebook didn’t give that away. If you looked at the photo in this article and thought that this show might be for you, then it definitely is.

The following was printed in the program: “Trigger Warnings: Graphic depiction of violence: Urban Mass Jesus Class. Depictions of Incest: Honey I Am Now At The Home. Body Horror: Waffle Cone Wednesday.”

The first sketch, “Spider Man,” set the show off on the wrong foot. It came with a brief production note: “Instead of sleeping I like to lay in the bed and wonder if I am good or bad. :(” The text contained more original dialogue than the sketch, which, like a cheap skit, drew out one joke for minutes on end. The audience seemed to enjoy it until I realized that about 30% of the people in the room were members of Latenite, who waited behind the risers instead of in another room. As such, the comedians had a primed audience to work with, which can admittedly make it easier for the viewers to laugh and enjoy the show. However, the overwhelming presence of Latenite performers in the room felt like a shady tactic to make the skits seem funnier than they were.

But after “Spider Man,” the show really picked up. The next act, “Sad Boys Club,” followed Werner Herzog as he created a nature documentary on “the ignominous Sad Boi,” a unique species “within the fuckboi phylum.” While drawing on the previously defined trope of the sadboi, “Sad Boys Club” brought an original angle by using the nature documentary form to hyperanalyze the social behavior of the two main characters. The role of Werner Herzog gave Amelia Arnold plenty of room to wow the audience. The next show, “Fist Me Bro,” was shorter. It put us into the fraternity (G)Gamma (A)Alpha (Y)Upsilon, where a trio of frat boys exhibit more than just undertones of homoeroticism. The shortest sketch, it knew not to stretch out its joke, and it successfully kept the audience guessing as to whether or not it would commit to its punchline.

But when does it get crazier?

Dec

9

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img December 09, 201612:32 pmimg 1 Comments

OUCH... just got #ZAPPED by this #LIGHTNING

OUCH… just got #ZAPPED by this #LIGHTNING

One should always exercise some wariness when approaching the Twitter of an institution, particularly a sports-related one—after all, who knows what lurks underneath those repeated mannequin challenges, hyper-edited photos, and “The Brotherhood” utterances of the various CU Athletics Twitter accounts? Bwog Senior Staff Writer Ross Chapman gives us a glimpse into the cringeworthy cyberlife of CU Athletics. 

Mundane Pictures on Weird Backgrounds

Last I checked, Columbia has nothing to do with lightning. Don’t tell that to the graphics designer for the basketball team, because he is all over that lightning background. Look at it very roughly align with the contour of Davis’s body! This is not the only photo with a nonsensical electric backing. But don’t think that Athletics has some special affinity for thunder. For instance, look at this football player kneeling in a stadium (not ours) in front of a pair of celestial Lions. For those of you looking for an older gentleman, consider this basketball coach in a vague action pose in front of New York City!

Demotivational Images

I’m sorry, does that compare athletes to eggs? See more past the jump

Nov

22

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img November 22, 20168:01 pmimg 0 Comments

a woman reading in Wollman Library, circa 1977

“damn, this election makes no fucking sense…”

Ross Chapman recounts the panel discussion, “Reading the Election”, in which the drama of this election cycle was connected to literature. This event was the perfect antidote for election season sour grapes.

“In the wake of the election, what can the study of literature offer us?” Rachel Eisendrath posed this question to a somber Ella Weed Room in Milbank Hall yesterday evening. Eisendrath, Assistant Professor of English at Barnard, moderated the panel discussion “Reading the Election,” put on by the Barnard English Department. In a “brutally reductive landscape of soundbytes and slogans,” she asked, what purpose can literature serve? She and the other panelists advocated that art should not be thrown away, and learning and action should not be mutually exclusive. Before the panel proper began, Eisendrath promised that each speaker would take five to eight minutes. Predictably, the speeches took over an hour.

Christopher Baswell, Ann Whitney Olin Professor of English, got the festivities started. “I have a handout,” he announced, “because if you don’t have a handout, it’s not the English Department.” Baswell, a medeival and renaissance specialist, brought The Parliament of Fowls by Chaucer to bring in the old English ideal of “comun profit.” He argued that the older and deader a work or society is, the more alternative it can be. (He was quick to follow up and point out that this was not a total endorsement.) Common profit extends across the world and across generations, and the idea circulated in London in the 15th century. Chaucer, through common profit, expresses the possibility of some sort of human salvation through the advancement of others. In a call to action, Baswell encouraged common profit as a forward option for those seeking direction under a new presidency.

Read more about the event after the jump:

Nov

3

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A packed Levien Gymnasium from spring 2016's CIT tournament.

It probably won’t be quite this manic

Hold onto your basketball-shaped butts, because it’s time for Basketball Mania.

On Thursday at 8:30 pm, the student councils will combine forces to host Columbia’s biggest pep rally of the year. Basketball Mania is a spirited mix of performing arts, pump-up music, and atrocious line dancing. The Lions won’t host a game in Levien Gymnasium until November 11th, but simple facts like that can’t stop the hype train that is Columbia Basketball.

The last NCAA basketball game played in Levien Gymnasium was on March 29th, when the UC Irvine Anteaters squared off against the Lions men to compete for the CollegeInsider.com Tournament trophy. Against nearly insurmountable circumstances, Columbia emerged victorious, sending off their senior class with joyous tears. You can be sure that clips from that game, especially shots of fans, will be used to hype the student body up for this year’s campaigns.

Expectations for the teams this year aren’t quite as high as they were last year. On the men’s side, the trio of senior forwards Luke Petrasek, Chris McComber, and Jeff Coby will have to use their size to redefine an offense that lost a majority of its three-point threat with the departure of the Class of 2016. Columbia was picked fifth in the preseason poll, in deference to teams like Princeton (lost no important pieces to graduation) and Harvard (top 10 national recruiting class). For the women, Tori Oliver is set to break records this season, having already place 7th on the all-time scoring list with a year left to go. However, last year’s two teams who made the NCAA tournament, Penn and Princeton, are still the favorites, and Columbia was pegged last in the annual rankings.

Basketball Mania, for all its whimsy, has not been without controversy. Last year, a 15-second dance segment in which members of the Women’s Basketball team stuffed basketballs in their shorts and twerked prompted an op-ed and a small group of protesters. Expect Athletics to be on high alert when it comes to avoiding confrontations. If you’re not leaving campus on Thursday night to get a head start on your fall break, Basketball Mania is the only show in town. Brush up on the Cupid Shuffle, find the cutest basketball player to fawn over, and get your hands on some giveaways in Levien.

Image via the Columbia Men’s Basketball Facebook page.

Nov

2

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img November 02, 20163:07 pmimg 1 Comments

an image showing a Columbia map and a list of polling places

rip Bernie, but this info is still good!

Whether you’re excited to vote or consumed by dread for the future of our nation, participating in the election is an important civic duty. If you’re voting away from Columbia, make sure you’ve sent in your ballot or have plans to get to your polling place! For those of you staying on campus, we wanted to provide you with an easy guide to voting around Morningside campus.

  1. Check your registration. Use the Board of Elections’ Voter Registration Search to look at your registration. If you’re not marked as registered, make sure you’re using the right ZIP code (10025 or 10027 for most students) and the right county (New York). Once you’re looking at your registration, take note of your voter status (should be active), your listed name (should match your ID), and your residential address. This address might be outdated (for instance, your freshman dorm), but this is the address that determines your polling place. If you are not registered now, it’s too late to register.
  2. With this information in tow, use New York City’s Poll Site Locator to find your polling place. Enter your listed registered address and take note of your polling site! These sites should be consistent with the sites listed on the map provided in this article created in April by Columbia and Barnard for Bernie, and we’ve checked a few to make sure they’re right. Still, use the Poll Site Locator just to be sure. Also pay attention to the poll site’s listed hours – many open early, and you should leave plenty of time to vote.
  3. Once you know exactly where you’re voting, take the time to familiarize yourself with your ballot. Go to Who’s on the Ballot to find campaign information about everyone you’ll be voting for. Again, use your listed, registered address on this site. Deciding who to vote for before you show up to your polling place will allow you to make informed decisions and avoid the biases of partisanship and the ballot order effect.
  4. If you’ve voted in New York before, you won’t have to provide an ID, as New York does not have a voter ID law. However, if you registered to vote in NY without providing your Social Security number or DMV ID number, you should be prepared to provide that. If you have not voted in NY and do not have an SSN, bring a paycheck or bank statement, or a valid photo ID.

Most Columbia students will be voting in Lenfest Hall on 121st Street. But make sure you know your polling place before the 8th. Otherwise, you could be standing for an hour only to be turned away.

Voting map via Columbia and Barnard for Bernie

Oct

27

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img October 27, 20162:00 pmimg 4 Comments

A single dorm room in the Schapiro residence hall

We know exactly which Schap single you live in

Whether you’ve never seen the Columbia directory or you’ve used it to stalk everyone you’re interested in dating, it’s there, and your information is probably visible to everybody. Bwogger Ross Chapman is here to tell you more about the directory. 

Imagine you’re in a heated Facebook argument (there might be a place or two for that to happen at Columbia). Your opponent is clearly an idiot, and you, needing a break from studying, are more than happy to tell them how bad they are for making their argument. It gets heated, but you think you’ve made your point, and you hop off of Facebook. Your adversary is fuming mad. Ten minutes later, you hear a very loud, aggressive knock on your door.

At Columbia, there’s a pretty good chance they know where you live.

The Columbia University Directory is useful for finding a departmental phone number or a campus celebrity’s email address. But CC and SEAS students living in University buildings, including most brownstones and SIC’s, also give away their home addresses to the entire world. The normal directory page displays a student’s UNI, email, department, mailing address, and home address. Of course, faculty like President Bollinger aren’t forced to broadcast their address anyone with an internet connection. While the directory page does say “For full results, please log in,” the information available to site visitors appears exactly the same, regardless of whether or not they are logged in as a Columbia student.

Students who wish to hide their addresses must fill out Request to Withhold Directory Information Forms. However, this is an all-or-nothing deal. If you want people to be able to find your email, you also have to broadcast your place of residence. As of this moment, there is no recognized channel within Columbia to selectively withhold information. If you feel that your physical safety may ever be in danger of stalking, we encourage you to submit your Request to Withhold form to 205 Kent Hall.

Oct

24

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img October 24, 201611:33 amimg 0 Comments

Columbia football players standing near the stands, singing with fans

Getting used to winning traditions

Senior Staff Writer Ross Chapman analyses how the Columbia football team defied all odds- and physics- to win against Dartmouth this past weekend. Is this the start of the football team’s secret plan for redemption?

Columbia football did not dominate in this weekend’s 9-7 homecoming victory against Dartmouth. The defense was thin on first- and second- down plays, and the offense only completed 12 passes. Perhaps most strikingly, though, the Lions failed to score a touchdown, even though they were past the Dartmouth 20-yard line four times. Most analysts will tell you that the Columbia football team is not a very good football team, and will point to stats like these as evidence. However, I believe that this touchdown-less game was part of a plan by Head Coach Al Bagnoli to ensure victory.

The Lions are working some obscure, often self-destructive black magic when it comes to converting points into wins. Don’t believe me? Take a look at this chart, showing the number of touchdowns the Columbia offense has scored in each of their games.

Check out the chart after the jump:

Oct

20

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img October 20, 201611:28 amimg 0 Comments

When you're halfway done with the semester but you can't party because midterms.

When you’re halfway done with the semester but you can’t party because midterms.

Today is Midterm Day, the halfway point in the semester. To mark the occasion, Bwogger Ross Chapman is here to remind you that your situation could always be worse – at least when today is over, it’s over! 

Taylor Swift is the first person I hear in the morning. “The players gonna play, play, play,” she reminds me from my radio alarm as I push off the covers. 8:00 a.m. always feels too early for me, but I have to get ready. Two of my suitemates, however, are already up and about.

“Don’t forget your textbooks, ‘cause today’s a stressful one!”

“It’s always stressful, where are we, the situation room?” The espresso machine in their room seems to fuel their loud morning banter.

“But today’s especially important, you know why?”

“It’s Midterm Day!” they sing together excitedly as they put their bags together for breakfast.

Since we started living together sophomore year, my suitemates have been obsessed with Midterm Day. For some inexplicable reason, the academic calendar lists Thursday, October 20 as “Midterm Date,” the halfway point of the semester. We like to imagine that Columbia thinks that it’s the one day a year when we happily take all of our midterms. But for me… well, it feels true. I have three midterms today, starting at 8:40 and going straight through until 2:00. I brace for the hell that today will put me through.

To cut to the chase, the exams totally ruin me. While I do okay on the first one, I’m totally unprepared for the essay questions on the others. As I wonder how well I’ll have to do on the finals to make these grades up, my suitemates are in the middle of a celebration. Midterm Day, they argue is a perfect excuse for day drinking. They’re happy to be through, and I’d love to be happy for them, but Midterm Day was nothing but trouble. Why even bother to list it on that dumb calendar?

The rest of the day is a total blur. By the time midnight rolls around, my suitemates are out at a Midterm Day EC party they managed to arrange, but I’m ready for sleep. “Everything will be better tomorrow,” I remind myself.

Taylor Swift is the first person I hear the next morning… (click for more)

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