Written by Jenny Zhu
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)
Overheard: “I’m not touching my $200 in bitcoin till I’m 80.”
A Song Recommendation:
Stay toasty bitches via Pixabay
Written by Zack Abrams
Ah, 2017. It’s been an amazing twelve years since the start of 2016, so to celebrate this impossibly long year, we at Bwog decided to give out awards every Friday until the new year. Our first installment: Top Ten Best Worst Comments. These are the comments which were the actual worst, but never failed to make us smile. Ranking these would be as useless as these comments, so just enjoy the gallery.
Written by Abby Rubel
Last night, staff writer Abby Rubel went to the Barnard Theatre Department’s production of Translations, directed by Barnard lecturer Sharon Fogarty. It runs through Saturday, December 9.
I walked into Translations unsure of what to expect. The Facebook event page only told me that it was “a modern historical parable of the brutality of rule,” and I was reluctant to Google further lest I be inadvertently spoiled. But a brief note in the program from Dramaturg Luke Cregan (CC ’19) hinted at what to expect–a play that explored a cultural identity crisis through the British control of Ireland. As someone almost completely unfamiliar with Irish history, this note helped me understand the history the play deals with rather than thrusting me into it unprepared.
The play opens with a movement piece, with most of the cast assembled on the stage and Arielle Firestone’s (JTS/GS ’19) lovely voice as the only accompaniment. Aside from the absolutely gorgeous singing, I didn’t think this piece added much to the play and only served to confuse me from the beginning because it didn’t provide any context for the play to come.
Luckily, the play’s plot was fairly straightforward. The British army was mapping Ireland and, in the process, Anglicizing all the Gaelic names and erasing the Irish identity. In the midst of this culture war, the community of Baile Beag (pronounced something like “Balleyuh Bay”) welcomed home Owen, the son of the schoolteacher and town drunk. Owen, played by Brandon Walsh (GS ’18), had abandoned his community to work with the army as a translator since almost no one in Ireland knows English. (At least, that is the impression the play gave.) A native Irishman, he was participating in the destruction of his culture. He particularly came into conflict with his brother, Manus, portrayed by Daniel Kvoras (GS ’19), who accused him of selling out. Owen brought with him two English soldiers: Lancey, played by Rupert Fennessy (CC ’21), and Yolland, played by Jesse Cao (CC ‘20). Yolland fell in love with Máire (pronounced Moire), played by Chloé Worthington (BC ’18), which is problematic both because they don’t speak the same language and because Manus already had his eye on her.
Written by Zoe Sottile
Last night, the Fall 2017 Visual Undergraduates Thesis Exhibition opened in the LeRoy Neiman Gallery, which is accessible either through Dodge or the entrance on College Walk. Visual arts seniors exhibited work in a variety of media, ranging from photography to crochet to painting. The artists also touched on a wide spectrum of themes; standouts included works considering race relations, female athletes, and biotechnology. The exhibit will remain open until December 14th, and the gallery is open from 9 am to 5 pm from Monday through Friday. The show is a great way to see some modern art without making the trek all the way to the MoMA, so if you like what you see here, check it out.
Photos by Zöe Sottile.
Written by Sarah Dahl
Yeah, you just reached the weird part of Bwog. Tag yourself.
Lerner = The Pull Out Method. Whoever designed this, like, wasn’t thinking, at all. We don’t care that he was an alum. Don’t try this at home. Lights up purple sometimes.
Barnard Quad Buildings = The Pill. Kind of annoying, but always there for you when you need it. Doesn’t work if you do it at the wrong time. ‘Chastity gates’ close at 11 pm. Seems like basically everyone has been here, done that. Baby form of birth control.
Hamilton = Copper IUD. Only one FDA-approved brand (Paragard). Lowkey famous but not as big as the pill. 99% effective. Might give you cramps but lasts 12 years. A bitch if you take the stairs. Should be free with insurance under the Affordable Care Act, but they will stiff you.
Butler = The Patch. Extremely visible. Not easy to forget about. Gets the job done but kind of a turn off. Literally stuck onto your skin.
Maison Française = Condom. Oldest thing on campus. Used to be part of an insane asylum but actually nice inside. Comes with wine. Can be uncomfortable and can break if used incorrectly.
Diana Center = Internal Condom. Most Columbia guys don’t know how to get here or how to use it. Not very effective. All the walls are red. Off-brand Starbucks on first floor that doesn’t accept gold cards.
LeFrak Center = Spermicide. Literally kills sperm. What actually is this? Again, dudes don’t really know this one. Used to be a gym, that was the last place Malcolm X spoke publicly before getting assassinated. Temporary Barnard Library.
Low Library = The Shot. Seems cool in theory but you have to actually do it once every three months. Easy to forget about. PrezBo’s office is here, but he’s never there.
Kent = Hormonal IUD. Hamilton’s prettier/more popular cousin, but only lasts 3-6 years. You can get stickers here. Elevator is still shitty.
Mudd = The Implant. A literal rod in your arm. Will bruise on insertion. Easy to forget about except when bae holds your upper arm. Slowly becoming more hip. MakerSpace inside. Upper level form of birth control.
EC = Sterilization. Life-altering, but you’ve thought it through. You can never have kids. Good views of the city. Potential for what your future might look like.
Any Frat House = Abstinence. A little gross, full of mostly cis men with whom everyone has at least a little reservation about sleeping with. You’ll probably end up here at some point in your life, and you probably won’t wanna go back.
Srat House = Plan B. What did you think? You got the shittiest number possible in the housing lottery. Thank god you rushed, though. Living here will make you moody for months on end, but at least you are safe.
Math Building = The Calendar Method. You have to be really good at math for this. Hard. Still doesn’t work sometimes. Advanced form of birth control.
Contraceptives graphic via Macrovector on Dreamstime
Written by Bwog Staff
Senior Wisdom nomination season is nearing its close! To nominate a senior who inspires you to be a better (or arguably worse) person but most of all, graduates at the end of the semester, hit us up with their name, school, UNI, and a brief description explaining why you think they deserve a Senior Wisdom. Email us at email@example.com or use our anonymous form. We are currently only accepting nominations for seniors who are graduating at the end of this (fall 2017) semester.
The deadline for submissions is tonight, 12/8, Friday, National Brownie Day, at 11:59 pm. Thanks to all the submitters who have already contacted us and for those of you who haven’t, you still have time!
Written by Zack Abrams
Happening Around The World: Same-sex marriage has been officially legalized in Australia! The online registry form also includes an ‘x’ option for gender, for “indeterminate, intersex or unspecified.” (NY Daily News)
Happening In The US: Minnesota Senator Al Franken announced in a speech on the Senate floor that he would be retiring after allegations of groping and improper advances. He took parting shots at Roy Moore and Donald Trump, both of whom have the near-complete backing of their party despite worse allegations. (NYT)
Happening In NYC: If you at all have the option of taking refuge outside Manhattan, preferably in a local bomb shelter, you should because this Saturday is SantaCon. Herds of drunken Santas will be roaming the bars and streets of the city in a nightmare which I’m sure Stephen King thought up, but decided against writing about because it’d be too scary. (Curbed)
Happening At Columbia: Orchesis is presenting their show, “Love is an Open DoORCHESIS” tonight in Roone Auditorium at 8:30 and 10:30. Check out our reviews of prior Orchesis events here, and we hope to see you there.
Bop of the Day:
Written by Sarah Harty
It’s that time of year again, folks, that time where we open paragraphs with “it’s that time of year again, folks.” In all mock-seriousness, Orgo Night is here! Well, almost. In anticipation of the event, Columbia University Marching Band has released their first round of flyers, some of which have been more controversial than others.
The posters say the event will take place in Butler on the last night of reading week, but it’s unclear as to whether the band will actually be let in this year. Get there early to snag a good spot, or bitch about it later.
Written by Ramisa Murshed
You may know JJ’s Place as the dining hall that’s there for you with cheeseburgers, curly fries, and mozzarella sticks whenever you need them, but long ago, the space in the basement of John Jay that JJ’s now occupies was a bar that served alcohol to upperclassmen.
Opened in 1939, the basement of John Jay, then known as the Lion’s Den Pub, served as an important social hub for Columbia students. An article in LIFE from February 15, 1954 described the Lion’s Den as a place “where there is music and dancing, and a certain amount of beer, and a thick fog of tobacco smoke, and a sustained, genial noise.” Richard Goldwater (CC ‘63) said it was “small, but had the authentic beery atmosphere.”
Barnard students would frequent the Lion’s Den prior to Columbia opening its doors to women, musical performances (including the Glee Club Quartet, which performed at the opening to the Lion’s Den), and even the Varsity Show would take place in the pub, and Columbia students didn’t have to leave campus to get a beer.
The Lion’s Den in John Jay soon closed its doors, and a new one opened in Ferris Booth Hall, what is now Lerner Hall, around 1962. The Lion’s Den in Ferris Booth Hall had a much more modern appearance, which, according to Goldwater “even in the sentimental glow of retrospect looks awful and sterile.” The Lion’s Den in Ferris Booth Hall closed in 1971. Later, in 1996, the basement of John Jay, then called “the Lodge,” became JJ’s Place.
When walking down the stairs of John Jay to get to JJ’s on a Tuesday night after a long day of studying, it seems almost unimaginable that the space where hungry college students devour thousands of calories once housed a focal point for nightlife. Although alcohol is no longer served and the sticky beer-permeated floors are now much cleaner, one characteristic of the Lion’s Den still remains in JJ’s: students love it.
JJ’s via Columbia Dining
The first Lion’s Den via Spectator Archives
The Lion’s Den in Ferris Booth Hall via Columbia College Today
Written by Megan Wylie
On Wednesday, December 7th, SIPA hosted an event regarding the future of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals Act following its repeal by President Trump. Staff writer Megan Wylie went to the timely event which featured a keynote address from Speaker of the City Council, Melissa Mark-Viverito and a diverse panel of professors and community activists.
Being both a native New Yorker and a politics nerd, I inevitably have a guilty pleasure for local politics. When I saw that the event was featuring Melissa Mark-Viverito, who was the first Puerto Rican councilwoman in New York City, I was interested due to the fact that it would not just be an academic approach to tackling the issue, but a personal one. Born in Puerto Rico, Councilwoman Mark-Viverito moved to New York when she was a child and attended Columbia for undergrad, and moved on to Baruch to pursue her master’s. Back to the topic at hand, the Councilwoman has helped make the city remarkably accessible to immigrants affected by the dismissal of DACA through providing legal, social, political, professional and economic assistance to those at risk of being deported.
Written by Jenny Zhu
While some see Butler as the concentrated epitome of stress culture, I, a literal resident of the library, view it as a respite of peace and quiet. When the visiting couple across from you in the cafe is loudly arguing about where they want to eat next in the *Big Apple*, when you can hear your hall neighbors fooling around – on a Tuesday morning no less, Butler is the one place where you can pop a squat and spend some quality time with just you and the Aeneid.
At least, that’s what you thought, until one day you discover not one, but two whole grown men napping and worse – snoring – in the chairs next to you.
I get the occasional, brief closing of eyes in Butler; it happens. Sometimes you’re flipping to the 201st page and the wave just hits. But if you have made a conscious thought and decision to take a hearty and full-fledged nap, especially with snoring involved, consider relocating to your dorm room or even a lounge of any of our many spacious non-library buildings.
While the pen drop and the water bottle knocking over are fine, the snoring is where I draw the line. Not only does it disturb the general study environment, but if I can hear you heaving each breath from a quite distant 40 feet away as you sleep, I’m concerned about your own health, as well.
Every building on campus has a very clearly designated purpose, shaped by architects, administration, and student culture alike. Carman is for sleeping and…NSOP. Hamilton is for academic meetings and that weirdly difficult four-story hike you do to your sixth-floor history class every Tuesday and Thursday. John Jay is for unseasoned college meals that by principle always include beans. Butler is for studying, not sleeping.
Written by Sarah Harty
Happening Around The World: Trump has officially recognized Jerusalem as Israel’s capital and has begun plans to move the U.S. embassy from Tel Aviv. Congratulations on fucking over Americans, Palestinians, and literally everyone whose name isn’t Benjamin Netanyahu. (BBC)
Happening In The US: Uncontrollable wildfires are raging across Southern California, reaching outskirts of Los Angeles. Tens of thousands have evacuated the area and the smoke can be seen from space. Normally it’s cool when things can be seen from space, but this is very, very uncool. (ABC News)
Happening In NYC: Opinion: film festivals are pretentious. Fact: Dogs are great. If you agree with both of these, you should check out the 3rd Annual Dog Film Festival, which is exactly what it sounds like – amazing. The show is playing this Sunday at 2:45 and 4:45 pm at the SVA Theatre (333 W 23rd St), and tickets are available here.
Happening At Columbia: If for whatever reason you aren’t making it to Lincoln Center this season – it’s too far away, too expensive, or you just really resent DSpar – Columbia University Ballet Ensemble is presenting their own production of The Nutcracker with performances tonight at 10 pm and Saturday at 1:30 pm. Read Bwog’s review here!
Overheard: “Men are discovering Diana smoothies. We can’t allow that.”
Liz’s Place via Bold. Beautiful. Barnard.
Written by Rachel Deal
Did you guys go to the “Columbia College Winter Celebration” tonight? Did you enjoy jockeying in an unruly hoard for free mugs and t-shirts as Deantini watched on with empty eyes? Did you feel like part of a community?
Check out the cover photo for the Facebook event above–why is “and the opportunity to meet your deans” in larger font than the part about the free stuff they were giving out? To be honest, I care a lot more about marshmallows than I do about Deantini. Also, if a perk of an event is to meet our deans, maybe said deans shouldn’t be so damn aloof in the first place. There’s definitely a problem with our campus culture if people are so surprised when they see Deantini that they take selfies with him! I tried to post about this in the Facebook event, but my post wasn’t approved (even after I texted CCSC President Nathan Rosin demanding that he approve it–love ya, Nathan!).
Anyway, the shirts and mugs are pretty cool. Apparently the baked potatoes were good and the mac n’ cheese was bad. I left without trying any of the food because I was stressed and overwhelmed after sacrificing my personal space at the altar of materialism. I didn’t get there early enough for a beanie because I was at office hours, but let me know below what you think of yours!
Written by Isabel Sepulveda
Staff Writer Isabel Sepúlveda braved the rain last night to attend the final reading for Writers at Barnard, featuring creative writing faculty, so you didn’t have to (though you definitely should have).
It was honestly the perfect atmosphere for a reading by two members of Barnard’s creative writing faculty, poet Saskia Hamilton and author Hisham Matar. The heavy rain and rushing traffic faded into a distant ambiance that set the tone perfectly for the intimate mood of the reading that was to follow. This set-up was continued by the writers’ introduction, given by fellow faculty member Rachel Eisendrath. It was frankly a touching introduction that conveyed her love and respect for her colleagues. She stated that “ours is a brutalizing world” and that these works were a moment of happiness in said world. I would later find these words to be the perfect contextualization of what I was about to hear.
Saskia Hamilton, English professor and director of Women Poets at Barnard, was the first to read. She began by sharing a piece titled “Zwijgen,” the Dutch word for “to fall silent,” and she explained the meaning behind both the title and inspiration for the piece. I had read the piece shortly before arriving at the event, in an attempt to get a feel for what I was about to be hearing. Seeing the words on a page was nothing compared to hearing the writer give life to her own works, both in the explanation and the reading itself. She followed with a handful of selections from a project she is currently working on, before finishing with two translations, including one of an Anglo-Saxon riddle. Despite the range of the selections, Hamilton painted a delicate but detailed picture of the subject and really lived up to the promise of moments of happiness in a world that tends to find itself lacking in that department.
Written by Sarah Kinney
The Nutcracker is one of the most famous ballets in the world today—especially around the holiday season. This semester, Columbia University Ballet Ensemble (CUBE) has been working hard to choreograph and produce their own version of this classic show, and Bwog was lucky enough to be able to send Arts Editor Sarah Kinney to sit in on dress rehearsal Tuesday night.
CUBE, known for both its incredible talent and inclusivity, casts every dancer who auditions. Because of this, the show featured dancers of every level—from beginners to ex-professionals. The curtain opens on Kayla Glaser (BC ’20) en pointe as young Clara, who then welcomes all of her friends and family to her family Christmas gathering. Many of the dancers portraying her friends are only beginners, but with Clara leading them in simple yet elegant movements, the scene is engaging and uplifting. This pattern continues throughout the show; with roles from children to mice to bakers to sugar plum fairies, the the whimsical tone of The Nutcracker lends itself well to incorporating dancers of all levels. Glaser’s portrayal of Clara herself is lively, inviting, and technically advanced, making her the perfect leader for the entire show.
The set, however, is somewhat lacking. With cardboard clocks and blow-up turkeys, the set certainly toned down the professionality of the production. That being said, the costumes—although not crafted specifically for this show—were creative and striking. The choreography was modeled after CUBE artistic director Elizabeth Neureiter’s (BC ’18) hometown studio production, but the student choreographers for each specific piece were granted artistic discretion to make changes as they saw fit. What ended up coming together was a genuinely student production—in a good way.
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