Mar

26

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Having a generic name was never a problem for this handsome man

Happening in the World: Schools in Toronto are ceasing field trips to the United States. The Toronto District School Board cited concerns that its students might be turned away at the border due to President Trump’s immigration vetting procedures. (The New York Times)

Happening in New York City: A resident of Trump Tower was fined $1,000 by the City of New York for renting out her apartment on Airbnb. (New York Daily News)

Happening on Campus: The Columbia Community Outreach Day of Service is happening today! If you’re registered, enjoy the free breakfast and apparel, and have a great day volunteering around the city!

Overheard: “The last time I had tequila, I puked and coughed at the same time. I puke-coughed.”

Random Procrastination Apparatus of the Day: Check out this Benedict Cumberbatch name generator!

Benedict Cumberbatch and wife via Stemoc

Mar

25

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Very nice curtains

Bwog sent a staff writer Vivian Klotz to the opening performance of Black Theatre Ensemble’s Festival of One Acts last night. Always in search of a good deal, the writer appreciated being able to see four plays for the price of one. The show is running once more in the Glicker-Milstein Theatre, Saturday, March 25, at 7 pm. Tickets are $5 with CUID/BCID and $7 without.

The first play, Colder than Winter, opened with a dimly lit stage, bare, with the exception of a single man. Soft music played in the background, the warm sound of the saxophone, overlaid with his voice, rising and falling. The audience had no choice but to be caught up in his words and be held captive as he moved around the stage.

This first scene lay the groundwork for the rest of the production and the three that followed. All four writers proved that they didn’t need fancy scenery or musical numbers to be memorable; in fact, the lack of distractions is precisely what made this festival great. One of the most memorable moments dawned the first play as a young black girl lay dead on stage, her friends gathered round, one of them telling the story of her first encounter with death. There’s no background music for life, and accordingly, silences in her monologue were thunderous.

The four plays explored important ideas; the first play emphasized the tendency for many straight, black men to be blind to the privileges that he may experience that black women and queer black people do not, and the third included a black wlw who attempted to make her friends realize that wlw is more than an attraction, just as black is more than a skin color. The second play took the audience on a journey to find truth in all her terrible forms, and the final one provided a humorous, original take on a haunted house story as a ghost attempted to scare a family out of their home, only to find that she wasn’t the only ghost home. Some of the stories told were uniquely black stories, but many also included characters who just happened to be black, providing space to prove that white doesn’t have to be the default.

Black Theatre Ensemble is well respected for its history of making high-quality productions, and this is no exception. Tech had a few brief moments of slow lighting changes, none of which detracted from the plays being visually interesting with great lighting choices and high-quality, well-chosen music. Overall, it was an exceptional performance on the part of all involved.

The next and final showing is today at 7 pm in the Glicker-Milstein Theatre. Tickets are $5 with CUID/BCID.

license free photo from pixabay

Mar

25

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Prezbo is the new sun

The Gadsden Flag, also known as the “Don’t Tread on Me” flag, which originated as a symbol of the American Revolution, has turned into a racist symbol as recognized by the EEOC. The flag has also been a favorite target of editing for enemies of the alt-right. To celebrate our experiences at Columbia, consider flying these new flags in your dorm room. Whether you want to support Manhattanville, mourn [email protected], or show your distaste for Spec, we’ve got you covered.

Mar

25

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It’s a Thursday morning–you’ve already slept through your 10:10 (whoops), and you’re in need of some nourishment. You roll into John Jay at around 11, half-asleep and seeking an egg white omelet, and you’re immediately greeted by Yung Berg shouting/growling, “SE-XY! CAN! I!”

It’s a jarring experience–serving yourself some cereal as Drake croons, “I’m trying to lay you down, down, down…,” or sipping coffee to Ciara’s “Body Party.” One Bwogger raised the possibility that John Jay simply shuffles a “slow jams” playlist in the morning, but that doesn’t explain why another Bwogger heard them playing Rihanna’s “Birthday Cake” while waiting in the egg line.

If you’re trying to get in the mood (for John Jay breakfast or for some physical intimacy), check out our playlist below:

Mar

25

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Edward Albee might be dead, but this original play about Virginia Woolf is giving us life.

New York City is packed with amazing culture and inspiring art, but sometimes it’s difficult to break the Morningside-bubble and experience it all first-hand. “Where Art Thou” is a weekly guide to interesting and notable lectures, events, and performances for the literary/musically/theatrically-inclined on campus.

Wednesday, March 29th

  • On Translating Clarice Lispector with Katrina Dodson, 7:00 PM, Room 501 in Dodge Hall – “The monumental Complete Stories of Clarice Lispector in Katrina Dodson’s much-lauded translation exploded on the U.S. literary scene in 2015. Dodson will speak about the Lispector phenomenon and the joys and challenges of translating her work in conversation with Minna Proctor of The Literary Review and Literary Translation at Columbia (LTAC) Director Susan Bernofsky, Writing.” – Free and open to the public

Thursday, March 30th

  • Silent Matinees: American Slapstick, 12:00 PM, Room 501 in Dodge Hall – “Professor Vito Adriaensens presents a five-part silent cinema matinee series with live music by Belgian jazz musician Adriaan Campo and friends. The fourth part is dedicated to the pitfalls and pratfalls of four of America’s best silver screen comedians. Buster Keaton outdoes Mary Pickford by performing not one but all roles in The Play House. Harold Lloyd conquers skyscrapers and death in Never Weaken. Charley Chase and his wife cheat on each other with each other in Mighty Like a Moose. And the outlandish genius Charley Bowers tells a tall tale with stop motion in Now You Tell One.” – Free and open to the public
  • Liam Young: New Romance, 6:30 PM, Arthur Ross Architecture Gallery (1172 Amsterdam Ave.) – “The Arthur Ross Architecture Gallery presents Liam Young: New Romance, the first U.S. solo exhibition of speculative architect, artist, and filmmaker Liam Young. The exhibition features three recently completed film projects – In the Robot Skies (2016), Where the City Can’t See (2016), and the debut of Renderlands (2017) – as well as a selection of props, materials and research that helped shape the fictional worlds encompassed in each film.” – Free and open to the public; gallery runs from March 30th to May 13th, 2017
  • Barnard Columbia Ancient Drama Group presents “Troades”, Seneca’s “Trojan Women,” 8:00 PM, Minor Latham Playhouse – “The Barnard Columbia Ancient Drama Group is proud to present Seneca’s “Troades” (Trojan Women) – a resistance piece composed around the middle of the first century CE during the reign of Emperor Nero by his tutor. . .This spring’s production applies contemporary symbols and movement to Seneca’s protest in poetry. (This production is in Latin with English supertitles.)” – Tickets available here; additional shows Friday, March 31st at 8:00 PM, and Saturday, April 1st at both 2:00 and 8:00 PM.
  • NOMADS presents West, 8:00 PM, Glicker-Milstein Theatre in the Diana Center – “NOMADS presents West, an original play by Antonia Georgieva and a window into the life and relationships of Virginia Woolf, especially her affair with Vita Sackville-West. The play follows the Leonard and Virginia Woolf as they host a dinner party for their friends Harold Nicolson, Vita Sackville-West and T.S. Eliot. The Woolfs’ maid, Nellie Boxall, provides a humorous foil to the authors’ heavy discussions of life and love. ” – Tickets available here; additional shows Friday, March 31st and Saturday, April 1st at 8:00 PM.

Image used under Creative Commons license,  via Wikimedia Commons

Mar

25

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Happening in the world: Protesting against a tax levied on the unemployed, Belarus protesters took it to the streets, angered by the tax that President Alexander Lukashenko said would “instill” discipline to the workshy. (BBC)

Happening in the nation: As President Trump and Speaker Paul Ryan withdrew the vote to repeal Obamacare, Trump repeatedly claimed that the Obamacare would “explode” without explaining why. (BBC)

Happening in NYC: After an Amtrak train derailed at PennStation, railroad services have resumed with warnings of delays. (USA Today)

Happening on Campus: Former Chairman of the American Institute in Taiwan, Raymond Burghardt and Professor Andrew Nathan will talk about U.S. – Taiwan relations under the Trump administration in IAB Room 918 on Monday from 12:00~1:30 pm.

Overheard(seen): “There’s a completely naked man banging on everyone’s door on McBain 3 to be let in.”

Photo via BBC, from Reuters

Mar

24

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The Barnard Admissions department welcoming the class of 2021!

Congratulations to a new class of Barnard students! Earlier this afternoon, Barnard sent out its decisions to regular decision applicants of the class of 2021. Barnard received a total of  7,716 applications this year – an eight percent increase from last year – and accepted a total of 1,139. This brings the college’s admission rate down to 14.8%, the lowest in Barnard’s history and down a full 10 percentage points from only three years ago.

The students in this class hail from 47 states and 39 countries. They will be the second class to study under Barnard’s new Foundations curriculum, which places a focus on technology, international learning, and the importance of empirical reasoning.

“These students embody the Barnard spirit—brimming with passion, curiosity, academic excellence and the desire to make a difference in the world,” Dean of Enrollment Management Jennifer Fondiller said about this class.

Admissions officers and attendant swag via Barnard Admissions Facebook page

 

Mar

24

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Charles Murray in a tie.

Author and American Enterprise Institute (AEI) scholar Charles Murray, widely criticized for racist views voiced in his book The Bell Curve, was shouted down by protesters at Middlebury in early March. Murray came to speak at Columbia last night without a hitch, despite a number of protesters outside Lerner. The event, hosted by the AEI Council at Columbia and co-sponsored by the Columbia College Republicans and Columbia Political Union, addressed whether elites are to blame for the rise of Donald Trump, and discussed his book Coming Apart. We sent senior staffer Sarah Dahl to report. 

Murray’s campus speaking engagement raises vital questions about free speech and the role of universities in promoting–or stifling–robust debate. Does Murray, who has espoused racist views, deserve an elevated platform to speak at Columbia? Does he deserve to be shouted down and turned away, as he was at Middlebury? Deserve is a difficult word, and not useful here, in my opinion.

Murray’s thoughts under the jump.

Mar

24

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A promotional photo for CUPAL's "Bodies Redefined," featuring the five actresses in dance poses with a superimposed title card

We hope you like dancing

The Columbia University Performing Arts League is performing Bodies Redefined, an ensemble piece based on the cast’s experiences and reexamines the roles of body and gender through voice work, acting, and dance. The performance will take place tonight and tomorrow night at 8 pm in the Lerner Black Box. Senior Staff Writer Ross Chapman reviews the performance.

Every semester, the Columbia University Performing Arts League offers up a Special Project, a short-form theatrical venture which pushes the limits of the medium. Bodies Redefined, this semester’s effort produced by Lindsey Rubin (GS/JTS ’19) and directed by Antonia Georgieva (CC ’18) and Kosta Karakashyan (CC ’19), continued that tradition of original Columbia avant-garde.

To call Bodies Redefined a play would be difficult at best and dishonest at worst. The five actresses do not take on characters, and the scene structure fails to provide a coherent narrative. The work employs seven scenes and five monologues, ostensibly to “envision what it means to belong to a certain gender and in what ways [the body is] envisioned or transformed through such interactions,” per the directors’ note.

Gendered experience takes center stage in Bodies Redefined. The show draws inspiration (and at times entire scripts) from Ovid, e.e. cummings, and Julia Kristeva to supplement the supremely personal monologues. The ensemble scenes made wide use of dance, indicative of the fact that the film’s two directors focused separately on dance and theater. If the acting in the scenes was overstated to match its source material, the monologues were understated and real. They focus on crying, dreaming, and loving, and take place on bare crates in the center of a 3-walled black box setup. Sitting in the center of the middle section of seats, I felt as though the speakers were truly recounting personal experiences. Whether or not the monologue on catcalling was entirely nonfiction was irrelevant to how deeply it pointed to the feminine experience at Columbia.

Whether or not the event had humor was also hard to decode. The dissonance between a Greek tale and a campfire story, for instance, was palpable and entertaining, but the mood of the scenes before seemed to suppress laughter from the crowd. One scene was overtly humorous, but the brightest jokes alluded to harsh gendered realities. The ambiguity made me wish for something like Latenite’s laugh track to make the difficult scenes easier to digest.

While the show hit the gender nail on the head, it failed to live up to its name by creating commentary on the body. Some of that material may have been hidden into Kristeva’s esoteric text, or in the intricacies of the dance, but the creative team could have done more to highlight the body and its creation and transformation to match their ambitious goals.

Regardless, Bodies Redefined lives up to Special Project’s short legacy of experimentation. Its monologues are powerful, its choreography is imaginative, and its material is quintessentially Columbian, from Lit Hum allusions to campus creeps.

Bodies Redefined will play at 8 pm on Saturday and Sunday in the Lerner Black Box, with tickets available for purchase at the TIC. The runtime is approximately 30 minutes.

Promotional photo via Facebook

Mar

24

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As we’ve learned, after a scandal involving pipe breakage and flooding and such-and-such and a brief stint as John Jay Jay’s/VaJJ, JJ’s is coming back in full force to its cozy home in the cellars of John Jay today at 5 pm. While we remain unsure as to the exact progress of this operation, we must hold to the assurance that the John Jay staff is moving slowly and steadily to the beat of Drake’s heartrending “Hold On We’re Going Home” (2013), patiently preparing the ingredients that so compose our late-night pleasures.

Mar

24

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Sir Richard Branson on his final Virgin Airlines flight

Happening in the world: Alaska Airlines has recently announced that the Virgin America airlines will be retired by around 2019. (Gizmodo)

Happening in the B’Appz: Yesterday afternoon, a judge ruled in favor of challenging a proposal to create Diller Island, a performance arts center on a new “undulating” Pier 55 along the Hudson River, due to the potential threats to fish and wildlife resources. (New York Times)

Happening on campus: At Low Plaza, the Columbia Japan Society will hold Matsuri 2017, their annual Japanese Spring Festival, from 4 to 8 pm. Admission is free, but bring money for food and gifts.

Overheard: “El Ferris. No, la Ferris. Ferris is a woman. John Jay is male. JJ’s is a gay bar.”

Shitty horoscope of the day: It’s Aries szn. I have nothing left to stay about this.

The Birth of the Virgin, from The Life of the Virgin by Albrecht Dürer via the Met

Mar

23

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You sure you don’t want to know which frats belong in which circle of hell?

You asked, and we delivered. Here is our official ranking of all of the fraternities on campus.

Our official rankings after the jump:

Mar

23

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Next on our Barnard Housing Review tour is 110, or sometimes called College Residence (both very innovative, creative names). Many people say Cathedral Gardens is the dorm to live in if you’re looking for a grown-up experience, but often fail to mention 110. With its own distance from campus, non-college habitants, and residents’ privileges to buzz up their visitors,  you’ll feel just as adult as your CG peers.

Location: 601 W 110th St (Between Broadway and Riverside).

Nearby Dorms: Nussbaum, Harmony, the 113 farts and sororities.

Stores and Restaurants: While most Barnard students will spend their days getting ripped off by MoWill’s high prices and limited selection, you’ll have access to Westside (110 st.) and Garden of Eden (108 st.).

Cost: unofficially $9,230 for a multiple, $10,712 for a single, and $16,000 for a studio single.

Amenities: Kitchen/Bathroom/Lounge space: Kitchens are pretty narrow, but every suite has one with a fridge, stove, and a counter top. There is also a small dining/ common space.

Laundry: In the basement. Machines are fine, but don’t take the same cards as the rest of the Barnard dorms. You’ll have to get a new one.

Computers/Printers: The closest are in Butler, haha.

Gym: No gym here, but you’ll be walking at least 12 blocks every day, so that counts as something.

Intra-transportation: two really nice, modern, wood paneled elevators that are covered in this weird gray fabric. The reasoning might be connected to why 110’s lobby is actually made of marble, but is currently covered up.

Wifi: Fast. You get your own router. (ProTip from a resident: write the password somewhere in your room and hang it up for visitors because you will not want to check it every time someone wants to access wifi.)

Hardwood/Carpet: Depends on the suite. Most rooms have carpet, while the common spaces are wood. The bathroom floors are marble, which is fancy.

Room variety: A mix of studio singles, walk-through doubles, and suite-style apartments including doubles and triples. Be mindful there aren’t any single rooms in 110 suites, so your only shot at having your own room in this building is in a studio single. Some suites have two bathrooms, a luxury the 600s will never know. Everything in 110 is very unique, as they are all converted apartments.

Numbers: Total mix of Barnard sophomores/juniors/seniors. Given its mystique and lack of singles, not many people go for 110, so it can be easier for sophomores to slide in here compared to 620 or CG

Bwog Recommendations: 

  • You’re right next to the 110 train station, which means you’re one more stop closer to that 96 express stop.
  • You could also take the train to campus. I would.
  • The hallways are really big and RA suites aren’t that plentiful, so you could probably get away with some stuff that you wouldn’t be able to do in the 600s.
  •  You’ve got a little gap between you and the rest of campus, which can be nice, but also inconvenient if you’re not very punctual. Even still, the short blocks and familiarity of Broadway don’t make the walk feel that long.

Resident Opinions

  • “You have a little phone in the kitchen and can buzz up food, guests, ect.”
  • “The building super is amazing. If you ever need anything — more chairs, pipe isolated — he’s on it. Our ceiling fell in last semester and it was fixed within days”
  • “This dorm is so underrated. 110 is where it’s at.”
  • “You also don’t get free toilet paper, but we’ve all got to grow up some time.”
  • “The furniture is really unique and cute. Also, real mattresses, not those dorm shits!”

Mar

23

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A shitty graphic for shitty boys.

We know you’ve all thought it. Which dorm your current hookup lives in says a lot about his relative sadboy- or fuckboy-ness. Whether he’s a Carman athlete, a Furnald poet, or a Wein loner, the stereotypes hold true more often than not. After all, what’s a stereotype without a little bit of truth? Read on for our definitive spectrum of Columbia dorms. 

EDIT, 3/24/17, 12:55 am: The section on Carman has been changed from discussing specifically Sigma Phi Epsilon boys to instead refer to frat boys in general. This section was not intended to trivialize nonconsensual sex, as Bwog recognizes that this is a very serious issue on college campuses nationwide (including at Columbia). Also, SigEp’s leadership would like to make it clear that they do not condone sexual assault of any kind, and that hard alcohol being served at fraternities is against both their national policy and Columbia policy.

Wallach

Ranking as the most sadboy dorm at Columbia is Wallach. These boys are so sad, actually, that you may not even know a single goddamn person that even lives in Wallach. You can often find a Wallach sadboy alone in his room, listening to classical music and studying for his Latin exam. A Wallach sadboy only ever ventures outside his dorm to go to class or get dinner at John Jay. You always forget his name even though he’s been in your lit hum for almost a full year, and he’s most definitely a virgin.

Read on to see the rest of the Spectrum.

Mar

23

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your new front door?

616 is the Goldilocks of the 600’s; not all doubles, not all singles, not too close to Broadway, but not too far either. If you’re looking for a crowd-pleaser, 616 might be your best bet.

Location: 616 W 116th St, basically at the intersection of 116th and Claremont.

Nearby Dorms: 600, 620, Claremont, Elliot, Barnard Quad, Schapiro, Woodbridge

Nearby Restaurants & Stores:  Halal, Morton Williams, Vine, and Coming Soon: Shake Shack

Cost: Singles are $9,510 and doubles are $11,038, but both prices are tentative.

Amenities:

  • Bathrooms: One per suite, with a toilet, sink, shower/bath.
  • AC/Heating: No AC, but heating works just fine. Fans are a must for hotter months, and can come in handy during winter if the suite gets overheated.
  • Kitchen/Lounge: Each suite has a kitchen with a gas stove, oven, sink, and fridge/freezer. The lounge on the first floor is top-notch, offering both nice study tables, a computer and printer lounge, as well as couches and a TV, on the off chance you’ll be watching cable.
  • Laundry: In the basement.
  • Computers/Printers: Computers and printers in the lounge on the first floor. There’s a good amount of computers and two printers, so you won’t have to worry about competing for machines.
  • Gym: None in the building. The closest is Barnard Gym, or Riverside Park if you’re the outdoorsy type.
  • Intra-transportation: Two elevators and a set of stairs. The elevators are pretty quick and reliable so if you’re not a fan of the stairs or can’t take them, 616 is a good idea.
  • Wifi: Reasonable wifi in all suites.
  • Hardwood/Carpeting: Linoleum, sorry!

More info after the jump!

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