A Lesson in Receipt-Keeping

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In hopes of catching you before you make that final trip to Bed, Bath and Beyond (or before you trash the packaging and receipts), Bwog asks upperclassmen which items were the most useless? The most underused? That Dust-Buster you’re going to use during downtime? The ironing board that totally fits between your bed and your desk? Perhaps they belong on this list, and not on Carman 6?

  • Bed Risers
  • Shower caddy (rusty and grotesque after a year’s tour of duty in Carman)
  • Drug paraphernalia
  • John Updike novels
  • Ethernet cord
  • Columbia sweatshirt
  • One of those hanging shelf sets for the closet (it broke under the weight of 15 sweaters I never wore)
  • Under the bed drawers
  • Lap desk
  • Pleasure reading
  • Digital camcorder with all the cables, tapes and programs necessary to edit video
  • All of the books I brought for reading
  • A crate of paper which was like, 5 500-sheet stacks
  • A suit and tie
  • Windex
  • Raincoat
  • Bathrobe
  • Slippers
  • Duster
  • Volumes 1-5 of Frederick Copleston’s History of Philosophy
  • My CD collection
  • A TV
  • Pencils
  • Pajamas
  • Plastic knives
  • George Foreman mini-grill
  • A printer
  • A lamp that clips onto the frame of my bed
  • Colored pencils
  • Borges’ short story collection, Labyrinths
  • A coffee mug
  • Binder
  • A trash can 
  • Flash drive (thank god for gmail)
  • Those stain stick things that you’re supposed to carry around and rub on your shirt.

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  1. well

    if you get stuck in a sub 100 sq ft single...the bed risers actually help with storage.

  2. mr. kinko

    you will be like a god among your floormates if you bring a printer. use this knowledge wisely.

    also, a vast dvd collection may get you elected president of your class and get your smiling mug displayed on lerner's wall of lame.

  3. Senior

    Good list, but a few corrections:

    A flash drive is very useful for transferring stuff from your PC/laptop to a school computer for printing, or to work on between classes, if you don't feel like e-mailing docs to yourself. They're so cheap now, you may as well bring one. (Of course, if more people use the email method and download files to school comps, we'll get more amusing Digitalia entries in the B+W, so hm...)

    Windex is also useful for cleaning the grimy, nasty windows in your room. And if you have a suite with a bathroom, you can use it to clean the mirror, because the shit the cleaning staff uses makes the mirrors streaky and almost unuseable.

    How is a trash can not useful? Please never invite me over to your place if you seriously don't own a trashcan for your room...

    Also, an Ethernet cord can be useful if you have a laptop and no wireless, but they are HELLA cheap in the bookstore, so wait until you get to school to buy.

    I do agree an ironing board is useless unless you're an iBanking wannabe who wears a lot of suits. For everyone else, just bring a bottle of that Downey wrinkle release stuff.

  4. senior  

    Bed risers are great for storage space in small rooms. (I'm in the largest room I've ever had, and it's 108 sq ft -- the risers are priceless). And your room should come with a trash can in it, but I liked having a second one for paper to make recycling easier.

    I definitely agree about CDs and pajamas, though.

  5. DHI

    Foreman grill is useful.

  6. Lap Desk?

    Seriously? People have those?

  7. Junior:

    Tide to go pens are very useful.

  8. Casey

    Forget about paper -- just use that print quota to print blank paper :). Get a gigantic thing of laundry detergent. You want to get rid of as many barriers to doing laundry as possible.

    The single most important thing is certainly a laptop. Those fuckers with a desktop are hobbled when it comes time for a study group. Study groups are the single best way to get past four years at Columbia. I met some of my favorite friends through the shared experience of a hellish class.

    You can never have enough Columbia sweatshirts, but steer clear of any sort of sweatpants. Buy at least one pair of decent waterproof shoes. Get either roller blades or a bike, it'll make you appreciate Central Park a lot more.
    Lastly, one week, be dumb and buy a weekly subway pass. You'd be amazed the sort of shit you do when the subway is 'free'. Bus to Koronets? Hell yeah.

  9. junior

    there nothing is better than sitting in your JJ single in a t-shirt and your underwear freshman year. Except maybe just sitting in your underwear.

  10. suits

    are actually pretty useful...if you're an upperclassman and have to do interviews

  11. single

    most useless item: condoms.

  12. not single tonight

    most useful item: roofie

  13. Good corrections

    but trash cans are supplied with the room. And you can very easily set up your computer to send documents to any Columbia printer, eliminating the need for a Flash drive solely for this purpose. As for Ethernet cables, I'm a senior and I've never lived in a dorm with strong-enough wireless to not need one!

  14. ethernet  

    Good luck *ever* using the internet in Carman without an ethernet cable, unless Columbia now has wireless everywhere. The only place I haven't needed my cable was in the library, and on the off-day when someone's wireless is unlocked.

  15. what about

    those door hanging mirrors they sell? at least 7 people on my floor freshman year had to return those.

  16. McFister

    You forgot a jumbo sized container of personal lubricant

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