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Jan

24

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An accurate representation of this meeting’s snacks.

Diverting from her usual Bwog fare of oddly-relatable shitposts, Deputy Editor Jenny Zhu stepped in this week to cover GSSC’s (General Studies Student Council) first meeting of the new semester. 

This week’s GSSC meeting opened with a feast of fresh fruit offerings, courtesy of the newly-appointed GS Dean, Lisa Rosen-Metsch. Dean Rosen-Metsch, who introduced herself to GSSC in December, came to speak more about her upcoming goals, talked with students in the audience prior to the meeting’s beginning, and brought snacks. Yep, we stan Dean Rosen-Metsch.

Rosen-Metsch Rocks

Rosen-Metsch took the mic to discuss her background as a GS alumna, a chair in the School of Public Health, a member of the Committee on Instruction, and now, the 9th dean of the General Studies as of January 1. Referencing her first official email sent to the Columbia community, she spent a moment recounting the sad passing of GS/JTS alumna Hannah Weiss, as well as the deaths of two other Columbia students.

After the floor opened up to questions, she first spoke on her accessibility to students, which she named as her top goal as a new dean (yay!) – she planned on meeting this goal by attending more events, allowing students to sign up for lunch meetings, and even eventually accommodating individual meetings requested via email. Beyond accessibility, her other priorities included financial aid, food insecurity, and social justice.

She also responded to questions about cyberbullying and GS integration in Columbia. To the former, she stated that she would hope to be briefed extensively about the extent of the problem first, and to the latter, she referenced her own past as a GS alumna as a basis for working on creating more GS inclusivity in the larger Columbia community.

Everything’s New

With the new year also came the introduction of a slew of new GSSC members and projects. GSSC first re-introduced the newly-appointed members from last semester (Students with Disabilities Representative Matt Linsky, Health and Wellness Representative Olivia Hartzell, and Equity and Inclusion Chair Jeffrey Panosian). The council also was introduced to new captioner Ricky and new JTS Representative Zach.

Beyond new council members, however, GSSC also recently got a new website! Built from scratch over the winter break, the new website is ready to be unveiled, once CUIT gives GSSC the approval to go live with the domain.

Other Updates

Upcoming events included a mystery Valentine’s Day event, which would include activities for GS to mingle, “especially the single ones.” GSSC also discussed the upcoming Glass House Rocks on February 1, which needed GSSC volunteers to both help set up and to solicit updated club information from performing arts groups at the event.

Jan

22

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You can’t see the stairs from outside, but trust us, they’re in there.

Recently, this unfortunate Bwogger enrolled in a class that meets Mondays and Wednesdays on the seventh floor of Hamilton Hall. After constantly forgoing the 20-minute elevator wait in favor of hiking up all six flights of stairs instead, she realized that the seven floors of Hamilton are perhaps best encapsulated by the seven stages of grief.

Floor 2: Pain and Guilt. This is where you start your inevitable journey; you first turn your back on the long lines around the elevator and instead take to the winding staircases. As soon as you step foot up the stairs, you suffer immediate pain in that twisted ankle you didn’t even know you had until now. If that’s not bad enough, you also start to have overwhelming feelings of guilt as you hike up past this floor, thinking to yourself that you maybe should have just waited for the elevator.

Floor 3: Anger and Bargaining. By the time you reach the second flight of stairs, you’re angry. You may lay unwarranted blame for your pain: who the hell only put one elevator in this building anyways? You might also attempt to negotiate with powers out of your control (“I will never drink again if you just give me the courage to get up these goddamn stairs”)

Floor 4: Reflection and Loneliness.  When you realize that you still haven’t reached floor 7 yet, you’re probably experiencing a period of sad self-reflection. At this point, you ultimately realize the true magnitude of the number of stairs you need to climb to get to your class, and it demoralizes you. You might focus on memories of a happier, pre-staircase past.

Floor 5: The Upward Turn. Wow, you’ve already hiked 4 flights! Your advanced position in your journey makes you feel like a more accomplished, more active human being.  Just as you begin adjusting to a healthier, staircase-driven lifestyle, you become a little calmer and organized with your thoughts.

Floor 6: Reconstruction and Working Through. As your mind clears, you start working through more realistic solutions to life’s problems (i.e. the elevators). It wasn’t that bad, you begin thinking to yourself as you take on a new lifestyle. I could probably do this again if I had to.

Floor 7: Acceptance and Hope. Given the turmoil you have just faced, you might not be able to return to the carefree, untroubled you that once existed prior to hiking up the stairs. But you will start to look forward and have hope: maybe your really good discussion in class today will make it all worth it. Eventually, you will be able to think about your inevitable fate of hiking up all 6 flights every day without pain; sadness, yes, but the pain will be gone.

Floor 1: Shock and Denial. If you realize that your class meets on floor 1 instead of floors 3-7, you’re most likely responding with complete shock and disbelief. You might think to yourself, do classes on floor 1 even exist? How have I gotten so lucky? Having a class on floor 1 is unlikely, and most likely a breach of reality on some level.

 Inevitable panting and  tiredness via Recycled Image

Jan

21

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img January 21, 20184:53 pmimg 3 Comments

The perfect freshman housing location… or is it?

In early December, Bwog received a tip, included at the end of the post, that complained of a lack of hot water in Carman’s renovated floors since the beginning of the year. After receiving notification of this concern, Bwog investigated.

Since August 2017, several residents of Carman Hall’s newly renovated floors, floors 9 to 13, have reported to lack hot water.

On Carman 9, shower water doesn’t heat up at all or takes around 45 minutes to get to room temperature, according to freshman Sydney Groom. After other Carman 9 residents confirmed having similar water issues in their floor GroupMe, their RA reached out to Columbia Facilities and Operations. “I thought it was only an occasional issue, but looking at the group chat, it seems a lot more widespread,” said Carman 9 resident Anna Morrione.

Carman 11 has faced similar problems. A Carman 11 resident, who agreed to speak under the alias Stephanie, has not had hot water since the beginning of the school year, instead resorting to using her neighbors’ showers. After Stephanie and her roommates “complained twice a week” via phone and online for over a month, Facilities eventually “tried to fix it, but ultimately told us it wasn’t an easy fix and left it at that.” Carman 12 students also reported malfunctioning water.

Columbia Facilities, in a December statement to Bwog, recognizes receiving these calls at the beginning of the year but stated that the department had “responded immediately,” which differs from students’ accounts of response times. Facilities said it was unaware the water posed a continuing problem until a November meeting with the RAs.

More issues after the jump

Jan

21

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If you want the power to singlehandedly ruin someone’s day, join Bwog!

Listen up here! If you find yourself bored, lonely, and hungry tonight with nowhere specific to go (which we know you will), do us both a huge favor and stop by at Bwog’s first open meeting of the year today, 9 PM, in Lerner 510. There will be outrageous pitches, there will be laughter, there will be bad jokes, there will be broken New Year’s resolutions, and there will always, always be freshly washed green grapes. More information can be found at our Facebook event.

Jan

21

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img January 21, 201810:05 amimg 0 Comments

What you look like, probably, in Butler today, speed-reading Luke and John and the Confessions.

Happening in the world: Authorities have found that an insurgent attack on an Afghan hotel, Kabul’s Intercontinental Hotel, has left at least five people dead. (NYT)

Happening in the US: Trump’s approval rating among men has improved by 8 percentage points, according to a recent CNN poll. (CNN)

Happening in NYC: If your Lit Hum reading isn’t cutting it anymore, The New York Times has published a Star Wars-themed book called “In a Galaxy Far, Far Away,” which collects all the publications’ recent coverage on the film franchise. (The Verge)

Happening on campus: Riverside Church is hosting a potluck lunch/open house at 1 PM today to learn more their volunteer program Coming Home, which involves helping out formerly incarcerated individuals. Entry to the lunch is free, and more details can be found in the Facebook event.

Overheard: “I woke up in the hospital in a Ravenclaw t-shirt”

Dec

13

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Get us out of this place for a few minutes

While the study breaks during reading week are incredibly helpful and supportive, at times they can look similar – many of them featuring some classic variation of cookies and hot chocolate. We here at Bwog want to see some study breaks get weird. Here are our suggestions:

1) Columbia time-management-chart-themed study break. This study break would be very strictly organized, with 30% of the break allocated for group studying, 0.0119% for personal hygiene, and 0.0536% for actual free time. The free time would constitute of structured job searching. You would leave this study break asking yourself, “Why do I want free time, anyway?

2) A CUCR study break, which would feature Steve Bannon and the NYPD. Make sure you don’t accidentally bring any pieces of paper above 8.5×11″. Though this study break would only occupy one room in Lerner, it would block everyone else from accessing the building for the rest of the day.

3) A Bwog study break. You would make friendship bracelets, bitch about Spec, and eat grapes.

3.5) An anti-Bwog study break. Similar concept as #3, except you would bitch about Bwog instead, and revisit some of our favorite hate comments. Bonus: the male a cappella groups on campus would probably make an appearance.

4) 1020 study break. Bad but free cranberry vodkas would be provided. This study break would also have a pool table and fun crafts, such as make-your-own-fake.

5) Ferris toast study break. You would literally go and make toast. While this study break would be fun, expect it to be really crowded. Avocado spread would be provided, but only before 10 am.

6) A Columbia BDSM study break. Hosted by the Columbia BDSM club, this study break would include wholesome activities such as learning how to tie someone up.

7) Fausta study break. This would consist of chilling with Fausta (the wonderful woman who swipes us into Ferris) for like half an hour. What more can you ask for from a study break?

8) A Stressbusters study break, except that instead of them giving you back rubs, they teach you how to give backrubs, so that you and your friends can stressbust each other.

Photo via 2015 Bwog

Dec

9

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Do you hear that, in the distance? The miraculous jingle of bells? The laughter of children? The whisper of delicate snowflakes falling? Yes, the first flurries of the school year have graced Columbia, and they’re absolutely magical. Join Bwog in celebrating the snow. Picture submissions are always welcome at tips@bwog.com!

Photos via Bwoggers Idris O’Neill, Betsy Ladyzhets, Jenny Zhu, and Thomas Saenz

Dec

9

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It’s snowing! Winter is nigh! Grab a cup of hot chocolate as you read today’s Bwoglines.

Happening in the World: Two Palestinians were killed Saturday in an Israeli airstrike in Gaza, linked to increased tensions following Trump’s recognition of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. (CNN)

Happening in the US: For $400 million, Apple is buying Shazam, which was most recently valued at $1 billion. (Business Insider)

Happening in NY: If you’re running short on gifts or just wanna treat yoself, an Etsy holiday market is running in Manhattan this weekend, offering handmade goods from independent local creators. (Time Out New York)

Happening on Campus:  The Kwanzaa Ball, BSO’s biggest event of the year, is tonight at 7 pm in Roone Arledge Auditorium! Tickets are $1 here, and more details are on the Facebook page.

Overheard: “I’m not touching my $200 in bitcoin till I’m 80.”

A Song Recommendation:

Stay toasty bitches via Pixabay

Dec

2

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About any Columbia student who was ever a freshman with that 989-meals-a-week dining plan has probably frequented the Columbia Dining menus before. As such, I’ve recently realized that the dining hall menus use some pretty quality, and some not-so-quality, stock photos to represent their dishes.  After doing some research for this article, I’ve formed a definitive ranking of the dining menu stock photos.

1. Chicken Noodle Soup, John Jay

There is no question that chicken noodle soup is the put-together royalty of menu stock photos. Its matching cloth napkin complements the color of the vegetables in the soup; the saltines placed strategically on the side scream “effortlessly classy.” Even the goddamn spoon looks beautiful. Not only that, but chicken noodle soup is actually good. Chicken noodle soup goes to East Asian and actually gets work done, has a spacious, well-decorated single with a pristine private bathroom in Watt, and probably has flawless (but never trashy) style. Well done, chicken noodle soup.

See the worst contenders after the jump!

Dec

1

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This Thursday, the Alexander Hamilton Society hosted a debate on the Iran nuclear deal featuring panelists David Phillips, Director of the Program on Peace-building and Rights at Columbia’s ISHR and a former UN and US State Department adviser, and Danielle Pletka, a Vice President for Foreign and Security Studies at the neoconservative think-tank American Enterprise Institute. Free Five Guys was offered as well.

With the event advertised as a “very fiery debate,” perhaps the fieriest aspect of this debate was the unexpected amount of bad jokes. Phillips opened the discussion by conceding that while the event was conceived as a debate, his “training and temperament [was] in conflict resolution,” drawing sustained guffaws from the audience. Nevertheless, this “conflict resolution” later proved unnecessary as the event went on and Phillips and Pletka both realized they held similar views.

Asked to comment on topics like President Trump’s simultaneous non-certification and non-termination of the JCPOA deal, as well as what their ideals of a better yet still realistic situation looked like, both panelists came to the conclusion that they agreed on many points: that Trump’s current handling of the affair is a non-strategy, that the deal is better than no deal but still holds many flaws, and that while Iran’s nuclear capabilities are disabled in the short run, they still possess much of the infrastructure needed to develop nuclear weapons in the long run.

More jokes, quotes, and actual policy viewpoints after the jump

Dec

1

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Barnard has joined as an affiliate of labor rights organization Worker Rights Consortium (WRC), which will help Barnard create a code of conduct ensuring that collegiate apparel is not produced in sweatshop conditions.

Nearly 200 colleges are currently part of WRC, including Columbia University since the 90’s. Since September, Student-Worker Solidarity (SWS) has been fighting for Barnard to join WRC, a goal that it brought up in its visit to SGA. This process has passed relatively quickly and without the drama accustomed to bureaucracy, with SWS’s proposal being converted to administrative action within a few months.

Read the full announcement on the website or below:

President Sian Beilock announced that Barnard College will join more than 190 other colleges and universities nationwide as an affiliate of the Worker Rights Consortium. The WRC is an independent organization devoted to helping colleges and universities improve the conditions of workers around the globe who produce their apparel. The affiliation will assist Barnard in implementing a manufacturing code of conduct, with which apparel vendors contracting with Barnard will be asked to comply.

The decision to affiliate with the WRC arises from semester-long conversations with Barnard’s Student Government Association and the student organization Student Worker Solidarity. Chief Operating Officer Rob Goldberg, who will oversee implementation efforts, has worked with students since September to discuss the benefits of joining WRC and how best to enforce fair labor standards as part of Barnard’s vendor agreements.

“Joining the WRC is consistent with Barnard’s commitment to the ethical purchasing of goods and services,” Goldberg said. “We appreciate students’ willingness to work with us on this important issue.” Barnard’s vendor code of conduct is nearly final.

Once complete, it will be integrated into The Barnard Store’s apparel practices, as well as shared with any group planning to purchase Barnard apparel.

Dec

1

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Because we know you can never get enough of sexual empowerment and creativity, come make a Zine to express your sexual self at an AllSex x Zine Club event today!

The Zine making will take place from 3-5 pm at Lefrak Library. More information can be found at the Facebook event here.

Dec

1

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All I want for Christmas are some goddamn berries in the dining halls.

Happening in the World: Japan’s Emperor Akihito will step down from his position on April 30, 2019, making Akihito the first Japanese monarch in two centuries to voluntarily leave his position – a decision announced by Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Friday. (CNN)

Happening in the US: After reports of extramarital affairs, Rep. Joe Barton of Texas has declared Thursday that he will not run for another term to represent the Dallas-Fort Worth District. (Washington Post)

Happening in NYC: A Snickers survey has found that New York is the hangriest state of the United States, with New Yorkers’ hanger (hangriness?) peaking at 2:15 pm on Mondays. (The Week)

Happening on Campus: A public lecture by Jill Tarter and a stargazing session is taking place from 7-9 pm today in Pupin, hosted by Columbia Astronomy Public Outreach. If the 7-9 pm time window seems daunting, the hosts say you may “stay only as long as you want.” More information can be found at the Facebook event here.

Overseen: 

 

A stapler in a Wallach elevator. I get the socks and even the underwear, but like….a stapler? Why?

Nov

18

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January 26 will forever be known as the date this Columbia student penned a true masterpiece of Western literature and humanities.

Beethoven, Sappho, Liszt, Mozart, move over. A Columbia Yelp reviewer has come to town.

As I was browsing Yelp reviews of JJ’s the other day, I discovered that a Columbia student had written a song about JJ’s in the reviews section. Yep. I’m….speechless. The song is to the tune of “No More Parties in LA” by Kanye West, and it utilizes such a sublime flow and lyricism that is to this date unparalleled by even Sappho herself. Honestly, what more can I say about it? The full lyrics are included below, as well as the song “No More Parties in LA” to give you an idea for the melody.

No more parties in JJ’s

Please, baby, no more parties in JJ’s, uh
No more parties in JJ’s
Please, baby, no more parties in JJ’s., uh
No more (John Jay)

Hey baby you forgot your french fries
Not cooked in peanut oil like Five Guys’
It was more than soft porn for the K-man
Hacked my diet like when I was selling them Rayban
Kashi no subete wo tabete, ureshikatta
On that air hockey table, I’m gonna play.
Gotta steal all them freshie swipes; they gonna pay
And I guess I can say hi to Iris, along the way.

Scary
Scary
No more parties in JJ’s
Please, baby, no more parties in JJ’s

So you pregamed ya pregame
Drinks before noon JJ’s soon there is no shame
Going straight for the mozzarella sticks
And foosball scores three meals a day hat tricks.

I am here waiting for the ghost of Kerouac
Just to tell him when you near my fortune cookies, step back.

I just keep on lovin’ you, baby
And there’s no one else I know who can take your place

Nov

18

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Remember when old people told us that avocado toast prevents millennials from buying homes? I’m an econ major, but that still somehow doesn’t add up.

Happening in the World: Surgeons have found that a North Korean soldier, who defected Monday, has harbored multiple fully grown parasites in his damaged intestines. Experts say this is a common condition among North Korean defectors, due to the lack of chemical fertilizers and reliance on human excrement for fertilization in impoverished North Korea. (NYT)

Happening in the US: The Senate Judiciary Committee has appointed Trump nominee Brett J. Talley, a three-year lawyer who has never tried a case and was unanimously rated “not qualified” by the American Bar Association, for an Alabama federal judgeship. (LA Times)

Happening in NYC: A huge, five-alarm fire tore through a Hamilton Heights apartment building Friday, inciting nearly 200 firefighters in response and casting dark plumes of smoke over northern Manhattan. (CBS)

Happening on Campus: Columbia New Music, an organization of Columbia-affiliated composers and performers of contemporary music, is having a concert in 112 Dodge Hall. More information can be found on its Facebook event page here.

A Song Recommendation:

Photo via Max Pixel under Public Domain

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