#waking up with bwog
Waking Up With Bwog: In The Swing Of Things

You and your posse

Rise and shine, freshlings! There are boring NSOP events to attend and selfies to take with Alma! As you prep for your 50th trip to Bed, Bath, and Beyond, we’ll let you know what’s hip and happenin’ on this beautiful NSOP morning. As always, send anything and everything NSOP-related to tips@bwog.com or use our anonymous tip form.

Today’s Highlights:

  • Sexual Violence and Gender-Based Misconduct (Mandatory Session), Roone Arledge Auditorium, check with your OL for times. In light of recent coverage on Columbia’s sexual assault policies, it’s a good idea to educate yourself on the topic.
  • NYC EVENT: Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum, 8:00–11:00 pm, W. 46th St. and 12th Ave. A good time that many will claim was a great time. Just remember: Bwog’s NYC Event was at the zoo and there weren’t even animals. So count your blessings, frosh.

One Thing To Do Before Graduating: Today’s nugget of wisdom comes from the dynamic duo of Claire Kao and Mahima Chablani (also known as ClaireMahima ClaireMahimerson):

“Delete your Facebook for at least one semester. If you don’t have one, high five!! There’s a strange sorcery to social media, wherein everyone else’s lives look that much more **sparkly** than our own. But things always look grander on Facebook. Skip the virtual interaction in favor of good ole eye and physical contact. Text your friend. No, call your friend. No, knock on their door.”

From the Archives: Ever wonder what you would see if you spent 12 hours straight in a Tom’s booth? Wonder no more.

A picture that made more sense in an earlier version of this post via Shutterstock

Waking Up With Bwog: Weird Wednesday
missed u shutterstock

“Look at all the friends I made, mom!”

After two days of NSOP, you can officially call yourself an old pro at this game. Slug down some OJ and eat away that hangover you still have from Sunday night to prepare for the day that NSOP and your clingy roommate both start to feel overrated. Keep trying to impress everyone with your SAT score and listing the schools you declined to attend Columbia. If you hear someone actually do this, tell us all about it by emailing tips@bwog.com or using our online tip form. This is the day the real whispered confessions come out.

Today’s Highlights:

  • Healthier Heights, Together, 10:30 am-1:30 pm, Lerner Health Ramps. This is listed as required on the NSOP schedule, but we’re guessing nobody is going to miss you, especially Health Services. If you do go, we’re sure you can snag some prizes (condoms.)
  • OL Sibling Dinner, 6:00-8:00 pm, John Jay Dining Hall. Meet some people outside of your college and see what those Barnard girls are all about. Last year CC students got lobster and everyone else got bagged lunch. Flaunt your privilege.
  • Community Forum, 8:00-10:00 pm, Levien Gym. Wear that new t-shirt mom bought you from the bookstore and head over to the only event you’ll experience until graduation with all four colleges in one space. Lots of laughs and forced school spirit.

One Thing To Do Before Graduating:

Find the best bathroom on campus to have a peaceful poop. You will forever be grateful how proactive you were finding that toilet your first couple weeks at Columbia until the day you graduate. Pro-tip: the higher you go in Butler, the more pooping privacy you shall find. (Thanks for the advice, Shelby.)

From the Archives: Love can be found in 1020. Robert and Kristine 4ever.

Waking Up With Bwog: The First Day


If you haven’t already noticed the cheering OLs, herds of lost-looking students, or crying parents, welcome to the first day of NSOP! If you ARE a cheering OL, a herd of lost students, or a crying parent, then you probably already knew that. If you’re interested in writing about anything from your NSOP experience to your weird new roommate to a squirrel you saw eating pizza, email us at tips@bwog.com or use our anonymous tip form.

Today’s Highlights:

  • Convocation, 2:30–4:00 pm, Low Plaza. A great place to overheat while you stress about saying goodbye to your parents. Prepare to feel all warm and fuzzy as you listen to administrators you don’t recognize talk about the importance of Pantone 290. Afterwards, meet your OL groups. You’re guaranteed to be best friends for the next four years.
  • Class Act, 7:00–8:30 pm, Roone Arledge Auditorium. A short little musical that will, somewhat misleadingly, make you feel like you’re in a place that has fun traditions.
  • Late Night Activities, 11:00 p.m.–12:30 am, John Jay lounge/ Carman lounge/ Van Am Quad. At least a marginally good time if you don’t feel like imbibing, or are still not 100% sold on doing anything other than fall asleep.

One Thing To Do Before Graduating: In one of Bwog’s most beloved series, Senior Wisdom, graduating seniors bestow their infinite knowledge upon us. Today, we’re highlighting a snippet of wisdom from Bwog’s own Anna Bahr:

“Let’s keep it seasonal. The swings in Riverside during spring. Mr. Softee during summer. The Cloisters during fall. Coney Island during winter.”

From the Archives: The story of Matilda the Harlem Goat, our almost-mascot and the champion of our hearts. Spend your first day talking about taxidermy goats and make friends for life.

Light of our lives via Shutterstock

Waking Up With Bwog: The Last Day

This is it, friends.  Tomorrow we’re officially back to school.

Today’s Highlights:

  • A ton of neighborhood tours.  See: Central Park, 5th Ave/Rockefeller Center, Chinatown/Little Italy, Midtown, Soho, Staten Island.  Meet at various places.
  • The EcoReps Green Tour, 1:30 pm, meet at the sundial.
  • Welcome to JJ’s Place, 8-10 pm, JJ’s.  Check out the beautiful new JJ’s Place.  You lucky bastards.

One Thing To Do Before Graduating:

Louise McCune: Get into it. Whatever “it” is. I wish upon everyone some extremely “chill” times in college, but I also hope that there will be days– weeks! months!– that you are so so so so absolutely INTO what you are doing that it is almost all you can think about. Take advantage of this unparalleled opportunity to have ideas and make things in the company of all these brilliant people.

Know Your Alums: We can tell you that you go to school with some seriously kick-ass people and you’re really going to enjoy the next four years, or we can just show you these:

The Hard Core: A Columbian Odyssey (Part 5 of 5) “It’s Finals Week” from Bwog on Vimeo.

Waking Up With Bwog: Sleepy Sunday

Classes are looming nearer. Today, you’re going to have to actually run some errands/buy textbooks/buy food, not just put it off. Luckily, you still have a few days of waking up with us. Savor it, this won’t last for much longer.

Today’s Highlights:

  • Meet And Greet, 9:30 a.m. – 6:30 p.m. Find out which clubs and organizations you’ll be joining/attending for the free food. The list of participating clubs is here for Columbia and here for Barnard; but all you need to know is that Bwog will be in the Satow room from 5:30 – 6:30. Be there.
  • All of the neighborhood tours. Learn your city.
  • Performance Showcase, 8:30 – 11:30 p.m. All of the people around you are incredibly talented. Come to appreciate them, be awed, and be shamed by your lack of dancing skills.

One Thing To Do Before Graduating:

Steven Castellano: Go on top of the Low dome. The journey up is half the fun, and the view from above is unmatched by that of any skyscraper in the city. Definitely do that, but also explore as many other physical and mental spaces as you can.

Know Your Alums:

You have this guy to thank for your 14th floor room with no functioning elevator. He was also the first Chief Justice of the Supreme Court, as we’re sure your enthusiastic tour guide told you. Love you, JJ.

Dat face

Waking Up With Bwog: Welcome, Upperclassmen

It’s everyone else’s move-in day, so NSOP is dangling carrots to lure first-years off campus.  Just stay out of our blue bins’ way!  Please continue to send in overseens and overheards to tips@bwog.com or use our anonymous tip form.

Today’s Highlights:

  • Neighborhood Tours: East Village, Downtown/Financial District, Brooklyn Bridge, Park Slope, meet at 11 am in various locations and MoMA, meet at noon.  It’s almost like you live in New York or something.
  • TVC Social Outing at SPiN Galactic, noon-3 pm, meet at 116th and Broadway
  • CC First Year Class Council Info Sesh, 3-4 pm, 569 Lerner
  • SEAS First Year and 3-2 Class Council Info Sesh, 3-4 pm, 568 Lerner
  • Chillin and Grillin with Greek Life, 5-7 pm, Pupin Plaza.  It’s almost like you’re in college or something.
  • Soccer with SGA, 7-9 pm, Lehman Lawn
  • Commuter Night In NYC (BC), 7-9 pm, meet at Barnard Gates
  • Late Night Entertainment, 9-10 pm, Roone Arledge
  • Late Night Movie, 11 pm-1 am, Lerner Cinema

One Thing To Do Before Graduating:

Rachel Nash Bronstein: Go the fuck outside. Like, right now. Chances are it’s nice out, but even if it isn’t, the fresh air will do you good.

Know Your Alums:

Hell yeah this song is about where you are right now.  Welcome back, upperclassmen!  (And, yes, the chandelier is in St. A’s)

Waking Up With Bwog: Finally Friday

You’re almost there, NSOP-ers — real school is almost in session.  Welcome to your first Friday.  Not the First Friday, though.  Please continue to send in overseens and overheards to tips@bwog.com or use our anonymous tip form.

Today’s Highlights:

  • Class Registration Help Session (CU), 9 am-7 pm, Satow Room on the 5th floor of Lerner.  Go to this it will help you registration is confusing.
  • eBear Registration (BC), 11:30 am-12:30 pm and 12:30-1:30 pm, Held Lecture Hall, 304 Barnard Hall.  eBear is confusing.
  • Getting A Job On Campus (CU), noon-1 pm and 1-2 pm, 329 Pupin.  $$$$$
  • CC First Year Class Council Info Sesh, 5-6 pm, 569 Lerner Hall
  • SEAS First Year Class Council Info Sesh, 5-6 pm, 568 Lerner Hall
  • Update, 12:15: the SEAS Info Session includes an info session from the 3-2 program representative as well
  • Open Mic Night, 9-11:30 pm, Roone Arledge Auditorium in Lerner Hall.  Go show off!

Mixers & Such:

  • Students of Color Breakfast (BC), 9:30-10:30 am, 2nd floor dining room
  • Native and Indigenous New Students, 12:30-1:30 pm, 423 Hamilton Hall
  • Commuter Social (BC), 2-4 pm, Lehman Lawn
  • Understanding American Academic Culture, 4-5 pm, 555 Lerner Hall
  • LGBTQA New Students, 4-5:30 pm, James Room on the 4th floor of Barnard Hall
  • TVC Social Outing: 6:45-10 pm, meet at 116th and Broadway
  • Shabbat Dinner, 8:15-10 pm, Diana Center Lobby

One Thing To Do Before Graduating:

Brian Wagner: Get your heart broken. It doesn’t have to be by a person—it could be an idea, organization, or friend. Once you get over the grieving, you’ll have quite possibly the clearest perspective on life that you’ve ever had, and you’ll learn what really matters to you. Find that one thing, and never stop doing it.

Know Your Alums:

Alexander Hamilton: the man, the myth, the legend.

Waking Up With Bwog: Thirsty Thursday

Moooornin y’all, A+ work on getting Beta shut down before midnight.  The war on fun: it’s real!  Now get some coffee, pancakes, and ginger ale and get ready for more activities.

Today’s Highlights:

  • Charting the Course (BC), 9:30-11 am, Held Lecture Hall/304 Barnard Hall.  Learn how to learn.
  • Being a Transfer Student at Barnard, 10 am-noon, Sulzberger Parlor, 3rd floor Barnard Hall.  Learn how to be a transfer student.
  • Alumna Summer Reading Forum (BC), 1:30-3 pm, Event Oval, Elizabeth Benedict, BC’76, will talk about her book Mentors, Muses, & Monsters.
  • Well, nothing very interesting is happening for CU during the day besides some advising sessions, BUT THEN:
  • NYC Event: Victoria Gardens (CU/BC), 8-11 pm.  Party on, friends.  Send your story to tips@bwog.com or use our anonymous tips form.  Anonymity is always guaranteed.

One Thing To Do Before Graduating: [Today we're giving you two pieces of advice for the price of one thing.]

Beyonce Knowles Carter Meriam Raouf: Lose that virginity. Not so much because you need to have sex to fit in, because, let’s be honest, there’s a ton of abstinence being practiced on this campus. But because that mission will probably take you below 110th street or just more into 116th. Either get involved off campus or get involved on campus. Netflix, Reddit, imgur, all those bastards, can eat up a semester, and then a year. And you’ll wish you’d only watched Parks and Rec all the way through one time, and done something instead.

Will Hughes: Spitters are quitters.

Know Your Alums:

Be proud, you’re joining the company of these fine humans:

Waking Up With Bwog: Hump Day

Good morning. Starting to get the hang of things? Remember, keep emailing tips@bwog.com with stories, overheards, desperate pleas for roommate advice. Keep on rocking.

Today’s Highlights:

  • Individual Advising Sessions, 8 a.m. – 7 p.m. The advice just keeps coming. All day long.
  • TVC Group Advising Session, 9-11 a.m. “The best way to start the day is with good advice.” We couldn’t agree more, writers of the NSOP schedule book. That’s why you’re reading this post, isn’t it?
  • Academic Resources Fair, 11 a.m. – 1 p.m. It’s never too early to start milking all you can out of Columbia. But really, the sooner you learn the actual opportunities available to you, the better. Take what’s being given to you.
  • Community Forum, 8-10 p.m. Or, where you cover Alma from head to toe with glow bracelets/necklaces and take selfies with your new BFFLs.

One Thing To Do Before Graduating:

Logon Donovan: Make an effort to get to know at least one new person in each of your classes. Go get coffee or tea or whatever they drink. It’s so easy to go to class every day and sit next to the same people and not even know their name. Especially in engineering where all of your classes are with the same people.

Know Your Alums:

Let’s keep listing the celebs:  Anna Paquin, both Gyllenhaals, and the far-superior-to-James-Franco Joseph Gordon-Levitt. None of them may have actually graduated from Columbia, but they were once on this campus, just like you.

Waking Up With Bwog: You’ve Totally Got This All Figured Out

A hearty welcome to the TVC students today!  We hope your day goes smoothly.  If you see or hear anything funny, or if you just need someone new to talk to, go ahead and email tips@bwog.com — we’d love to hear from you!

Today’s Highlights:

  • Move In for TVC students, 9 am-1 pm
  • Individual Advising Sessions, 8-9 am, 4th floor Lerner.  If you’re awake early enough for this, you probably don’t need an advising session.  There’s also sessions from 10:30 am-7 pm.  We don’t get why they’re listed separately either.
  • Lit Hum: The First Class, 2:30-4 pm, Roone Arledge Auditorium in Lerner Hall.  Go to this.  Write about it and send it to tips@bwog.com.  Christia Mercer has been gone for the last year and oh boy have we  missed her.
  • SEAS Math Info Session and Placement Exam, 2:30-4 pm, 312 Math.  While CC is at a lecture, SEAS takes a test.  This is also how the next 4 years will be.
  • Community Night Out, 10 pm-1 am, various locations.  Got out with your RA!  It’ll be fun!

One Thing To Do Before Graduating:

Randolph Carr III: Rob this school blind. Check out as many books as you can read, and keep whatever you find inside. Apply for every grant whether you think you are qualified or not. Any professor who you are slightly interested in, take every spare moment they will offer you, to loot their wisdom. This school is abundant in resources, most of which it has, indeed, robbed from someone. Do not be ashamed, steal every opportunity you can get.

Know Your Alums: James Franco was here for a little and “studied” in Butler 209 a lot, which was a fun and sexy time for people.

Waking Up With Bwog: The Gang’s All Here

Today we’re getting our final round of movers-in with the short-distance travelers.  Bwog will be running about today, snooping on NSOP and talking to freshmen about the experience.  As of today, NSOP is officially in full swing, so it’s time for you to Wake Up With Bwog.  If you’re interested in writing about anything that you go through today, email tips@bwog.com.

Today’s Highlights:

  • Barnard <3 NY, 10 am-3 pm, various locations. You’re in NEW YORK FUCKIN CITY NOW.
  • Columbia Convocation, 2:30-4 pm, South Lawn.  Get yer convocation on.
  • Meet Your OL, 4:15-5:30 pm, various locations.  Do a human knot.
  • Class Act, 7-8:30 pm, Roone Arledge Auditorium in Lerner Hall.  It’s just like Pitch Perfect we swear.

One Thing To Do Before Graduating: One of Bwog’s classic traditions is Senior Wisdom, a series run around graduation every year, where seniors are nominated to shed some wisdom.  Here we highlight a piece of advice from them.

“Have purpose, and lots of sleepovers.” – Claire Sabel

Know Your Alums: Comedy group Local Empire, Columbia alums who were in the Fruit Paunch improv comedy group, verbalize how you’ll feel on the lawns with your OL today:

And So Ends NSOP

It’s over! We hope that you freshpeople have enjoyed getting to know Bwog as much as we’ve enjoyed getting to know you. Relive the best of this week’s NSOP coverage:


  • Overseen: codewords, totes, parents and more
  • Overheard: the things they said
  • Swag: free things that Bwog found, including slushie cups
  • Photobwogging: orientation in pictures
  • CUgLow: Alma at the disco

Introducing the Class of 2015:

Health and Safety:

Getting to Know the ‘Hood:

Things you should really know about:


Getting to Know Columbia:

Home decorating:

Waking Up With Bwog #7

The ultimate dilemma

As you freshpeople look forward to the next four years, seniors are anticipating their last. Whatever they’ve been through during their time at Columbia, one questions plagues them more than any other: if you had to give up either oral sex or cheese for the rest of you life, what would you choose?

Rajib Mitra, SEAS ’10

Unless you are lactose intolerant, the answer should be oral sex. If you say otherwise, you are wrong. Actually, even if you are lactose intolerant you should still pick oral sex. You survived the post-John Jay dining hall afterparty in your tummy, you know you can suck it up for glorious cheese.

Katie Reedy, CC’09

I must refer to the 5/7 episode of 30 Rock. Liz Lemon is curled up alone in her apartment, wrapped in a blue Snuggie, sampling from a large cheese tray and singing to herself, “Workin’ on my night cheese,” to the tune of “Workin’ on my night moves.” This scene encompasses my answer and my general philosophy.

Jody Zellman, JTS/GS’11

It’s hard to imagine one without the other.

You have time to think about this ’15ers, but one day, your time will come.

Waking Up With Bwog #6

We hope you’re starting to find your sea legs by now. We’ve some real treats for you today.

Get yourself wiser courtesy of Bwog alum Menachem Kaiser, GS ’09:

A good title on a paper will help you far more than you might realize. Whatever it is you kinda dream about doing in life, do it here, while you can, often. Sweatpants do not help anyone get laid. Professors are, by far, the most under-utilized facility on campus, followed by the librarians; use ‘em. Assiduous note-taking in science/math classes does not help one whit. There’s a lot to be said for classes where the readings are good.

We’re feeling it’s about that time of the year for some Ferris Bueller:

The rest of this morning is dedicated to the tips and tricks to choosing classes that no one ever tells you.

First of all, Columbia has no official “shopping” period, where you test out classes, but most professors understand that things shake up a bit in the first two weeks. So it’s definitely not the end of the world if you switch into a class or two late.

You are told that you cannot switch core sections without petitioning, but this is false. It’s perfectly easy to do through SSOL. Bwog cannot impress upon enough the beauty of the refresh button. You can see all the Lit Hum professors under the subject ‘Humanities’ in the Directory of ClassesDo some research, because a professor’s area of expertise can bring a lot to the table. Some historic favorites are Richard Sacks (section 11) Mark Lilla (sections 30 and 48), and Liza Knapp (section 7). Once you’ve identified a few sections that you would like to switch into, sit in front of your registration page and hit the “switch section” button. Freshpeople are all over the place with their course selection, switching in and out of things willy-nilly, so availability will be changing all the time, and most spaces are only open for a few minutes. Same goes for all other first-year reqs.

Keep an open mind. CULPA is highly subjective, and just because one person didn’t enjoy a teaching method doesn’t mean it wouldn’t work for you. Teaching styles will vary hugely, and you shouldn’t dismiss your professors based on hearsay. The number of negative CULPA reviews that get written because people were miffed about their grades or just wanted an easier ride is really depressing.

Talk to your professors! They know you’re ignorant and afraid and a little sweaty. They want to encourage you. Just be honest with them about what you’re looking for in a class, and they’ll be able to direct you to the right place.

Waking Up With Bwog #5

Peel yourself out of bed and go ‘splorin.

Classes start soon, so before you get lazy, make this Apple your oyster. Some weekend suggestions: Hell’s Kitchen Flea Market, the annual unicycle festival, Brazilian DayThe Central Park butterfly garden, Upright Citizens Brigade, eating. Structure a full day around finding the best pickle, pizza or bagel. Pick a random neighborhood and stroll. You run this town.

Another daily dose of wisdom, courtesy of Nina Pedrad, CC’11

Find a couple things you love here, and get into them. I came from the “do every activity imaginable in high school so you can get into a good college” school of thought. And I wore sweatpants for most of high school. Now, there’s nothing wrong with sweatpants, but I wasn’t pregnant or training to fight Apollo Creed. My point is, you can calm down a bit because… you’ve done it! You’ve gotten into a good college. So do a few things you love and relax.

Oscar Wilde said “life is too important to be taken seriously” and sister knows her business. No assignment should throw you into a massive panic attack, no weird look at a party should ruin your night. I don’t know if these will best the best four (or five, or six) years of your life because that will mean you peaked in college, but they can be a damn fun four years.

And get to know people, because there are some pretty cool ones here. On your freshman floor you probably have a kid who can build a rocket ship, belt all of “Defying Gravity,” and make fart noises with six different body parts. If the same kid can do all three, then you need to become that kid’s manager and exploit him.

Bwogline of the Day:

After all the consent workshops, this NYTimes article on college gender roles seem topical…and frighteningly familiar. An excerpt: “What stunned me was what was happening outside class, where women seemed not to have budged in decades.  In social settings and in relationships, men set the pace, made the rules and acted as they had in the days when women were still “less than.” It might as well have been the 1950s, but with skimpier clothing, fewer inhibitions and better birth control”