Senior Wisdom: Josh Mathew
Written by Bwog Staff
Name, School: Josh Mathew, CC
Claim to fame: Editor in Chief of the Journal of Politics & Society; former Middle East affairs correspondent for the Bwog; RA; Double Discovery Center; leading conspirator in the anti-hunger strike; local jackass.
Post-grad plans: Lounging on the always classy Jersey shore for the summer and then returning to a consulting firm’s office in Dubai/Riyadh.
What are three things you learned at Columbia?
1. There is no “return to roots.”
2. If you’re ever trying to push through a crowd to ask Al Gore to write for your journal, it’s not a good idea to shout out “Mr. Clinton.” It’s also not a good idea, when people then stare at you, to swear loudly.
3. “With so many dissonances in my life I have learned actually to prefer being not quite right and out of place.”
Justify your existence in 30 words or less.
Bet I can make you smile when the blood, it hits the floor. Tell me, friend, can you ask for anything more?
Favorite study spot?
I crave natural light, and Columbia’s dorms have sought to deprive me of it repeatedly. We might all be happier if we had bigger windows. I used to love the business school’s library for its open spaces and plentiful windows, that is, until the b-school’s xenophobia drove it to close off the study rooms and segregate the wireless network. Whatever, I didn’t want their misogynist banter and perpetual dark jeans with black dress shoes anyway.
What was your favorite controversy in your time at Columbia?
Definitely the hunger strike. My parents and I got a kick out of it when I heard that a strike organizer had referred to me as a Bobby Jindal. I’m tempted to digress, but I don’t think this is the appropriate place to discuss my reasons for opposing the strike.
Also, I really appreciated working with the Pro-NROTC Committee. I realized the extent of the civil-military gap (not necessarily anti-military sentiment) on campus. I also got to know some of the really great ROTC cadets at Columbia.
Any battle wounds/war stories from the War on Fun?
I was an RA so I guess that makes me a belligerent?
Would you rather permanently give up oral sex or cheese?
I believe that I have a minor case of lactose intolerance.
What do you wish you could tell the Class of 2013 before they come here?
1. Your being at Columbia suggests that you have something pretty remarkable between your ears. Share that gift with the less fortunate as soon as possible – there are countless volunteer tutoring programs here. “If you do, your life will be richer, and our country will be stronger.”
2. I think a lot of people, myself included, waste a lot of time trying to find a niche, clique, or at least a group that resembles the Sweathogs. Appreciate Columbia’s diversity because you’ll probably never have something like it again. Try to jump amongst circles and see what they have to teach you.
3. Anonymous commenting is dangerous to your health, as there is not a clean divide between our real and online selves. To those ready to pounce and call me a tool below, know that the act pollutes your mind and soul. Also, this.
Regrets? None. Just thankfulness.