Feb

10

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The Student Affairs Committee (SAC) of the University Senate announced changes today to the Interschool Governing Board (IGB), the organization that funds groups composed of both undergrads and grad students.

With these changes, a member of SAC will set on the executive board of the IGB. “Other key constitutional revisions include adding a graduate administrator to better advise graduate-heavy groups, a focus on graduate student representation in club recognition criteria, and stricter guidelines for notifying student groups of their recognition status and funding availability,” the statement reads.

If you’re interested in being part of the IGB, the statement prompts you to contact your senator (Sean Ryan, Ramis Wadood, and Marc Heinrich for Columbia College; Jillian Ross for SEAS; Katherine Celentano for GS; and Erin Bryk for Barnard College).

Full statement after the jump!

Feb

10

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Iconic.

Iconic.

Sarah H. Cleveland is Columbia Law School’s Louis Henkin Professor of Human and Constitutional Rights, as well as the Faculty Co-Director of the Human Rights Institute. Her areas of expertise include National Security and International Humanitarian Law, Foreign Affairs and the Constitution, and International Law in U.S. Courts. Last night at 6 pm, she held a lecture on “Human Rights Connectivity and the Future of the Human Rights System,” and Daily Editor (and fellow human herself) Lila Etter was in attendance.

As I made my way up the steps of Low Library and entered the Rotunda, I began to notice that this was not just another lecture. I had thought that I was one of the early birds, and my plan had been to snag a seat up front by arriving a whole 20 minutes early. Little did I know, people had begun flooding in as early as 5:15 pm. The Rotunda was full by 5:45 pm, which is when I realized that the University Lecture only happens once a semester.

President Bollinger and Provost Coatsworth delivered two separate but equally-praiseful introductions for Professor Cleveland. PrezBo emphasized that there “could not be a more important subject in the world today than human rights,” and after affirming his love for the word “global,” he called Cleveland a brilliant mind and the embodiment of what Columbia stands for intellectually. Coatsworth was similarly complimentary, and for those who knew nothing about Cleveland up until this point (which I’m sure were very few), this opening may have seemed almost adulatory. I myself had known of only some of her numerous accomplishments, including her position as a beloved professor at the Law School, as well as her work with Amal Clooney at the Human Rights Institute. I arrived at the lecture already impressed. But when this semester’s University Lecturer was finally welcomed to the podium, it was immediately clear that she deserved the praise.
Read more about this once-in-a-semester opportunity, after the jump.

Feb

10

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It is time that makes us human

It is time that makes us human

Last night’s GSSC meeting proved to be a quick in-and-out, and Bwog neophyte Romane Thomas was on hand to witness the historic occasion. But don’t be fooled! Issues of substance were still discussed.

On Tuesday night the General Studies Student Council (GSSC) broke a record for shortest meeting ever. Although the session only lasted 25 minutes, the audience was updated on most of the undergoing projects and policies.

After congratulating the Campus Life Pole for their successful Lunar New Year celebration, the council voted on an initiative to cosponsor a GS Six Flags trip, allowing the event to rent buses for the 50 people attending. VP of Finance Dalitso Nkhoma commented that the event was unfortunately sold out, but that perhaps more open slots would be available next year. The council also agreed to cosponsor a mental health conference, as part of Mental Health Week, which is unfolding from February 15 to February 22.

VP of Campus Life Jade Le-Cascarino encouraged the council to spread the word about the Singles Mingle event happening on February 11th from 8 pm to 10 pm at Amity Hall. GSSC has approved a budget of $1,600 for the event, which includes 150 drink tickets. Student Body President Elizabeth Heyman stated that this was everyone’s chance to “party like you are forever alone.”

Reminders and updates after the jump!

Feb

10

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The Bacchanal machine keeps on grinding

The Bacchanal machine keeps on grinding

Soon enough, stubborn and yellowing ice will give way to uncovered lawns, budding flowers, and the truest indicator of spring: Bacchanal. It might seem distant now, but maintain hope and eventually campus will be congested, disorganized, and presumably, awash in the sounds of good (???) music.

If you’re a musician and interested in participating in this great and controversy-ridden Columbia tradition, consider trying out for the Bacchanal Battle of the Bands. As you likely know, the winner will get to open for our mysterious guest performers, joining the ranks of such greats as Vampire Weekend and The Morningsiders. To submit, you must send a YouTube or SoundCloud link of up to five minutes of music to bacchanal.eboard@gmail.com. The deadline is Thursday, February 11 at 11:59 pm.

The rest of you can look forward to the actual event, which will take place in the Lerner Party Space on Friday, February 26, at 8:30 pm.

Those of you who are less artistically inclined can help defray the costs of Bacchanal by buying an official crewneck sweater, priced at $30. Let the description sway you: the Facebook page reads, “Show your support for FUN and rep your school with pride in SICK apparel!” If you’re into FUN and being SICK, you’d better hurry—crewneck sales will end on Monday, February 15 at 11:59 pm.

Modern Warfare via Facebook

Feb

10

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The crowd demands a blood sacrifice

The crowd demands a blood sacrifice

Democracy in action: last night presidential candidates Bernie Sanders and Donald Trump won the New Hampshire primaries for their respective parties. It’s hard to believe that the same state produced such ideologically dissimilar winners, but it happened! (New York Times)

“Happy Birthday” finally enters the public domain, after generating over $50 million in licensing fees and often, the media’s awkward sidestepping of the iconic tune. Next up: your chemistry textbook. (Huffington Post)

Following a deadly crane collapse on February 6, Mayor Bill de Blasio has introduced stricter crane safety regulations. Cranes can now only operate in certain weather conditions, and specific boundaries must be set around areas of operation. (New York Daily News)

Apparently Google pulled ad blockers from the Google Play Store?? Obviously, that didn’t last long. (TechCrunch)

The Public Domain via Paul Thompson/Wikimedia Commons

Feb

9

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Capitalism truly reveals the best and the worst in markets

Capitalism truly reveals the best and the worst in markets

Valentine’s Day—or Gal-entine’s Day, or Bro-entine’s Day—is coming soon, with a panicky need to get your significant other/bro/gal a gift. But all the cliché stuff is either expensive or, well, cliché. That’s why Bwog has pulled together a list of more…unconventional gifts to entrance your Valentine come the 14th.

  • a five dollar love message from the the Columbia Wind Ensemble, with options including Hotline Bling, Want to Want Me, My Girl, and A Whole New World
  • a book filled with Frida Kahlo post cards
  • a free book from the Altschul Atrium
  • as many cheap stuffed bears sold at Duane Reade as possible
  • a free back rub from Stress Busters
  • a flower bouquet that, if properly translated according to the Victorian language of flowers, reads “Your love is reciprocated, but I fear death on the morrow and also I know that you slept with your french teacher last semester”
  • adopt a panda through the WWF, cute certificate included
  • free sleep masks/ear plugs, condoms, “dental dams,” lube, chap stick, and stress balls from John Jay Health Services
  • dinner + a show—aka swipe into JJs place, then watch a protest on the sundial together
  • a Nintendo DS charger and/or a Smash4 cartridge
  • a fake
  • treats for small pets/specifically small dogs
  • a hand drawn picture of your s.o.’s/friend’s/crush’s celebrity crush
  • a yarn condom and yarn condom accessories
  • a cookie cake celebrating Earth Day
  • “oregano” brownie, to share

Yarn romance via Gosh Yarn It Facebook page

Feb

9

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Screen Shot 2016-02-09 at 2.34.40 PM

Enter: scene 1. Two actors. Sulzberger practice room. Commence passionate love.

Everyone is always looking to amp up their sex lives. But the Stacks isn’t the only place to get your freak on at Columbia. Continuing our series from 2014, Bwog has set out to find the best and worst spots on campus to consummate a relationship. Here, a Bwogger describes a relatively unknown spot: the Sulz practice rooms.

Valentine’s Day is nearing, and the residents of the Quad are anxious to Marvin Gay(e) and get it on, despite the awkward roommate negotiations, the XL twin acrobatics, and the accidental peep show for Broadway…. Suddenly that hookup doesn’t sound so appealing.

But suffer no more, Barnardians (and signed-in Columbians): your sex destination this Valentine’s is only a steamy elevator ride away.

Okay but how do you get there and stuff?

Feb

9

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We bet Bollinger wouldn't have dropped Jordanian Queen Rania.

We bet Bollinger wouldn’t have dropped Jordanian Queen Rania.

Editor Nadra Rahman comes to you with a heart full of lamentation. Today, instead of preparing for an intimate night by the fire with fluffy-haired CU dreamboat Prezbo, she sits alone and thinks of what might have been.

The Chain of Events

On Friday, January 2, 2016, I received an email about the fireside chat, an “opportunity to have a candid conversation” with President Bollinger. “Okay,” I thought as I filled out the lottery form. “Whatever.” In the space where we had to type in a question to ask the president, I drew a blank and hastily typed, “Do you believe in miracles?” which was neither clever nor funny, but was in the interrogative form.

The following Thursday, I was notified of my selection. I confirmed, mildly confused by my own luck and excited at the prospect of skipping my chemistry lecture. Here is where it gets confusing: the next day, at 1:03 pm, I received a rejection letter, not an uncommon occurrence for me. The email read, “As you know, interest in these events is high and we are unable to extend an invitation to all entrants…” What? I ignored this second message, but I’m not sure how I was able to dismiss it so easily.

Uh oh

Feb

9

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Throwback to simpler times, when Barnard had dragons associated with the school.

Throwback to simpler times, when Barnard had dragons associated with the school.

This update on the actions and elections of the SGA are brought to you by Barnard Baroness Raji Ganapathy as well as the Super PAC Bwog™, “fighting for better news since 2006”.

This week’s SGA meeting was decidedly election-themed. We kicked things off with a presentation by the Columbia Elections Board. The CEB is an independent council that oversees elections held by CCSC, GSSC, and ESC, although technically it views itself as a subsidiary of CCSC and receives its funding from them. The council was formed three years ago in order to combat corruption and conflict of interest in the election process, which was formerly headed by each respective student council. The CEB emphasizes impartiality, independence, and fairness in the election process. In the case that the CEB is unable to resolve an issue, such as determining whether a candidate should be accused of misconduct, the CCSC judicial board is able to intervene and make a final decision.

On Monday’s meeting, the CEB made its case as to why Barnard should also start using their service. The presenters, CEB co-chairs Kate Welty (SEAS ‘18) and Sam Henick (CC ‘18), pitched the CEB to SGA members and fielded questions about the transition process. Barnard’s elections are currently handled by the Elections Commission, a group consisting of four SGA members (typically SGA president, junior and senior representatives to the Board of Trustees, and the University Senator), as well as a member of the Honor Board. With the changes proposed by the Columbia Elections Board, all aspects of the elections, including candidate promotion, information sessions, candidate mixers, rules meetings, ballot counting, debates between candidates, and promotion of the voting process would be handled by the CEB.

What else happened?

Feb

9

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Listen, we’re not on a high horse here. Campus media has a lot of problems. And you have problems too! So which of us do you most resemble? Answers to this quiz include Spectator, Spectrum, Bwog (that’s us!), The Fed, The Lion, and a special mystery response. Try to find them all!

Feb

9

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One of our favorite places

One of our favorite places

Did you get your free Chipotle code today? The Mexican dining eastblishment closed its I,899  or so stores. There have been reports of E. coli spreading, especially related to kids eaying at Chipotle and suffering intense bouts of sickness. (USA Today)

At the U.N. Security Council, North Korea’s latest launch attempt was, unsurprisingly, called out. Experts believe that you might be able to see a North Korean rocket with a heavy payload by way of Alaska or Hawaii in the near future. (CNN)

Bashar al-Assad’s regime might soon prove a triumphant regional actor in Syria-Iraq. His forces are surrounding Aleppo, a huge city divided between government forces as rebels. With Russian support, the government troops are edging in, while increases in refugees on the Turkish border are becoming worrisome. (Al Jazeera)

Yesterday was the first day of the new Chinese Year of the Monkey. Apparently, it’s also a year linked to the element of Fire. According to traditional Chinese beliefs, this year may match the excitement of the last two fire-monkey years: 1956, the year of the brutal Soviet crushing of the Hungarian uprising, and 1776. (NBC)

Feb

8

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Chickpeas or vomit? A superb owl would probably be able to tell

Chickpeas or vomit? A superb owl would probably be able to tell

As you’re probably painfully aware, the SuperBowl was yesterday. And, as you are also probably painfully aware, the most recent problematic short-lived meme is calling the SuperBowl the Superb Owl. As a patron of sports, owls, and (occasionally) memes, Bwog has titled this week’s field notes accordingly. Predictably, some of us are more superb than others.

Superb Owls:

  • Complained about Gloria Steinem and white feminism at a bougie bar in Midtown.
  • Had a deep and meaningful conversation that I don’t remember, woke up to a text saying what a great listener I had been
  • Went to Arts and Crafts for the first time. Realized they have my ideal demographic: all of the Columbia male TAs.
  • Watched the SuperBowl pretending to know what the flaming hell was going on. Eli Manning has a fivehead. That’s all.
  • Lost my shit at Lady Gaga performing the National Anthem at the Super Bowl
  • Got super drunk at pregame only to go out for an hour and come back early because I had to babysit in the morning
  • Went to a SuperBowl party solely to take advantage of the free food and procrastinate on homework
  • Watched the super bowl by myself even though I don’t care about football or either of the teams playing
  • Watched the Puppy Bowl. Team Fluff was robbed.
  • Crashed a Chinese New Year semi-party with a friend, didn’t know anyone but the food was good
  • Went sadly sober to a high school reunion.
  • Then: After went to NYU bar where Zack (and Cody) from Suite Life happened to be. 75% pretty sure it was Dylan Sprouse and not Cole.
  • And part three: When we asked to take a picture he said to look sexy and mysterious, in which I just looked constipated.
  • Spent three and a half hours in Ferris doing nothing, got lunch and dinner off one swipe
  • Opened the oven to bake some brownies in the floor lounge (the good-kid kind) only to discover a 6-pack of beers. May or may not have snagged some.
  • Got drunk and ate 23 fortune cookies (saved all the fortunes, don’t worry)

More owls after the jump

Feb

8

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So many cool events in such a short period of time!

So many cool events in such a short period of time!

This week marks Islam Awareness Week, a series of events and guest speakers sponsored by the Columbia Muslim Students Organization (MSA) that both helps Islamic people on campus celebrate their faith and educates other members of the community. This year, the week’s theme is Reclaiming Muslims Narrratives, which, according to the event’s official Facebook page, “aims to deconstruct distorted and false narratives of Muslims in an effort to bring back and take agency of our own narrative ourselves.” There will be events every night this week, all of which are open to CUID holders. (Non-CUID holders can contact the Columbia MSA to RSVP.)

The schedule for this week is as follows:

Fancy design via the event’s Facebook page

Feb

8

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You can practically feel the stress wafting through the air

You can practically feel the stress wafting through the air

We all know that feeling: the reading for this class was really long and really difficult, and nobody could work up the motivation to actually get through it. But, unfortunately, your class is a seminar of fifteen people, and the professor is going to expect you to have a meaningful discussion about something literally nobody read. What do you do? Bwog writer Betsy Ladyzhets has answers. (And not because she didn’t do her First-Year Seminar reading for last class – she totally did. She promises.)

It’s five minutes before the seminar starts. The classroom is slowly filling up, students stifling yawns and balancing coffee cups as they squeeze around the overly large table and slump into seats. A few take out books or packets of paper and frantically flip through the pages, highlighting arbitrarily and scrawling messy notes, but most just turn to their phones, taking advantage of the last few minutes they have before they’ll have to pretend to be academically inclined students on top of their lives. And then, someone asks the question:

“Did anyone do the reading?”

Everyone in the class looks around – heads are shaking, polite smiles are drooping into frowns, and frowns are disintegrating into nervous laughter. The murmurs begin quietly, but are soon clearly audible:

“No.”

“Nah.”

“No way.”

“I tried, but I fell asleep.”

“I got through, like, the first ten pages? Maybe?”

“It was so dense, I could barely understand it.”

How’re they going to get out of this?

Feb

8

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Fossil fuel divestment is on the horizon

Fossil fuel divestment is on the horizon

An email from Barnard SGA to the Barnard student body this morning announced that the student-voted referendum they released earlier in the semester has passed. Their email provides the voter breakdown:

SGA recently conducted a referendum on Fossil Fuel Divestment. 23.82% of the student body participated, and of that number, 95.92% voted in favor of divestment. As per our Constitution*, this referendum has passed. Thank you to all those who participated!

If you have feelings about the referendum results, DSpar, or the environment, be sure to attend the panel discussion later today at 4 pm in the James Room in Barnard Hall. The event is the first of its kind by the newly assembled Presidential Task Force to Examine Divestment.

Compelling graphic via Barnard College Instagram

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