Senior Wisdom: Paul Wallace

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Name, school: Paul Wallace, CC

Claim to fame: Captain and former president of the Columbia rugby team, Ivy League all-star. Decorated veteran of the War on Fun. Once described (affectionately? I hope so) by a friend as “a big, normal guy.”

Where are you going? Not too far- probably to Brooklyn. In terms of what will be occupying my time, I’m going to be teaching at an all-boys school on the Upper East Side, playing rugby for Old Blue, and enjoying post-college life in New York City full-time.

Three things you learned at Columbia:

  1. Relationships with people are worth infinitely more than anything tangible. Prioritize accordingly.
  2. If you be yourself and be true to yourself, good things will happen. The happiest people I know are all exceedingly real. The converse of this is that you can’t be concerned with people who don’t appreciate who you are.
  3. Diversity is worthwhile. Not many people appreciate how authentic the diversity at Columbia is, or how it enriches our experiences here. We take it for granted because it seems odd to think that it would be any other way. I wish everyone could be exposed to an environment like ours.

Justify your existence in 30 words or less: I once canceled a rugby practice so I could see The Books in concert. I flatter myself to think I take a long-term outlook on life better than most.

Any war stories from the War on Fun? A few. Personal highlights include shocking an RA by answering the door naked while eating a banana, being handcuffed to a gurney on my 22nd birthday (don’t worry, Mom, that night had a happy ending!), and being gruffly kicked off the steps on 40s on 40 for wearing an upside-down American flag. Truly, though, I need to recognize the eight people I’ve lived with for the past four years, first in Carman, then in Ruggles (twice), and now in EC- all of us have been written up at least once, and most have been written up quite a bit more than that. We actually once got in trouble for a party that hadn’t even started yet (the time a Public Safety officer memorably called my suitemate a “party addict”), and we once got in trouble for a party that had happened two days prior (for a “safety and sanitation” violation- who knew it was against the rules to keep six bales of hay in your suite?). And one time two public safety officers came into our suite, started to write us up, then noticed the disco lights, fog machine, and (ineffectual) security camera we had rigged, and let us go free in recognition of our party efforts. We would eventually wisen up and designate before each party which suitemate would take the hit, but back when we were fledgling sophomores, all of eight of us living in Ruggles at that time gave our names to the RA when our Halloween party was broken up, leading to a comical procession in the Office of Judicial Affairs a week later when, one after another, we would walk in and be asked to identify ourselves based on what our Halloween costume had been. Fortuitously, the lady questioning us was a huge Star Wars fan and quite impressed that my suitemate dressed as Obi Wan Kenobi had been wielding a very expensive lightsaber, and our suite got off with just a warning.

Would you rather give up oral sex or cheese? Whether the cheese is good isn’t a factor in most romantic relationships, so for the sake of my future wife, I would give it up.

Any advice for the Class of 2014? Explore the city during your freshman, sophomore, and junior years. There are so many awesome and inspirational things here, and you’ll never find them if you don’t wander around a bit. But by your senior year you’re going to want to savor every last bit of Columbia and it’ll become harder to leave campus. Yes, despite Columbia’s pervasive self-loathing, if you play your cards right, you’ll be sad to go by the spring of 2014. Also, don’t go to bed early unless you want to miss everything.

Any regrets? A few, but as a wise Country Squire once told me, “If you live life to the fullest, sometimes you’re going to spill.”

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  1. 2010

    paul wall is one of the best folks at this school. as a former freshman floor mate (carman 11 w000t), he's been awesome since day 1. however, his/his suite's parties are dangerous. i once saw a wall (not the paul variety) catch on fire due to a dangerous game they were playing with 151. I'll miss you Paul!

    • Carman 11 '06-'07  

      Yeah Carman 11!! Paul's Senior Wisdom was by far the best, gotta love the parties / freshman year floor pride!!

      • KN  

        thank God someone appreciates oral sex in the senior class

        • Anonymous  

          doesnt mean he's any good at it

          • Paul  

            I would invite everyone reading the comments on Bwog to click the "Track" button for this particular commenter.

          • Paul  

            Just as a point of clarification to anyone who isn't familiar how the "Track" feature works on Bwog: when one person posts multiple comments for a single story on Bwog, by clicking "Track" above one of their comments, it highlights all the other comments that they've made. In this case, one commenter has decided to make 14 comments thus far, all decidedly negative. Obviously it is his or her right to do so anonymously, but I think it's probably appropriate for me to point out that this person obviously has it out for me.

            I am sorry to say that there are a few people at Columbia who don't like me- hence why I added an addendum to #2 on my "Three things you learned at Columbia." Hope everyone else has enjoyed what I had to say. It was a privilege to be able to do a Senior Wisdom.

          • Anonymous  

            haha wow that guy needs to relax

          • Hooah

            Haha, wow. You got owned, Anonymous commenter. This mess is going to get raw like sushi, so haters to the left.

  2. YES

    Columbia could use more partytastic bros with genuine opinions on life. party on, paul wallace

  3. Anonymous  

    "Also, don’t go to bed early unless you want to miss everything"

    best advice ever

  4. by far  

    my favorite senior wisdom yet.
    great combination of sincerity and fun

  5. awwwwww  

    I was at that hale bale party, epic^2

  6. whoa  

    no idea who this is, but this is the paradigm of good senior wisdom - interesting stories from his four years here and life advice instead of wisecracks and insular observations. gj bwog.

  7. r

    great senior wisdom, i like!

  8. a senior  

    wow. i loved this. all of it. go paul wallace! i hope we meet in the future!

  9. best

    cheese vs. oral sex answer yet

  10. Anonymous  

    This is my favorite SW yet, Paul seems like a cool guy

  11. Anonymouse  

    I love Paul Wall. A true hero to rugby players and WoF soldiers alike.

  12. For the record....  

    Our setup at that party was a disco light, a fog machine, a security cam, AND two strobe lights. We mustn't forget the strobe lights!

  13. If his parties are as epic as this SW  

    I've been going to the wrong parties for years now...

  14. Anonymous  

    this man is bro-tastic

  15. meh  

    Better than most SWs, but I love how the Bwog commenters are gobbling this up because Paul is a "party animal bro." Sure, funny WoF anecdotes, but his widsom moments aren't anything amazing. Seems cool, seems fun.

  16. wait,  

    so does he like to party?

    • Anonymous  

      so hes naked at parties and gets written up often. good thing he got into columbia over thousands of other qualified applicants he sure is making the most of it!!!

  17. Anonymous  

    Bwog, I must nominate Sam Reisman for Senior Wisdom. scr2113

  18. also,  

    the thinly veiled cheese comment was off-putting. too much info paul. im uncomfortable with the implication you just shared with the entire internet.

  19. Anonymous  

    i hear paul wall swings both ways

  20. CC 2011  

    I LOVED this senior wisdom, especially the parts about relationships, exploring the city, and the oral sex answer!!!

  21. CURFC  

    you'll be missed Captain. I'll always remember you answering the noise complaint after KC covering yourself with only a rag

  22. Anonymous

    I loveeee Paul Wall. He is Columbia's answer to "Beauty and the Beast"'s Gaston minus the chauvinism and misogyny.

  23. love  

    I wonder if I know you....
    Anyway-- I did not know Columbia had fun, unpretentious, genuine fellas. Sad we never met, one because you seem great , and two because you definitely have been doing Columbia the right way and now I feel like I have missed out.

    I never went to a party with bales of hay... damn

  24. Finally  

    someone tells it like it is and admits that oral sex is better than cheese. First senior in at least two years to do so

  25. yeah kid  

    We also had fire bot to keep guard against any future incendiary incidents... he remains in ruggles and keeps watch over its residents

  26. Lol  

    It's pretty great guessing which of Paul's suite mates have made comments, based on writing style.

  27. so  

    hes going back to his hs to teach.... wow... 2010 just keeps getting better

  28. love ya  




  30. Groupie  

    Paul Wallace, you are the shit. I'm so glad I've had the opportunity to get to know you. :) It's time to move the Suite parties to BK!

  31. Admirer from across the pond

    Truly an exceptional person. Has crazy stories from the WoF and yet still managed to get a job! Well rounded AND good looking!

  32. FINALLY  

    a senior wisdom worth reading. You do the class of 2010 proud, Wallace.

  33. Trandy  

    Hey boo looking fabulous!



  34. yess  

    I have been to almost every one of his parties. Thank you, Paul, and the rest of Carman 11 for making my Columbia experience more enjoyable. You guys are gems :)

  35. Phil  

    It was affectionate.

  36. what's he teaching

    like PE?

  37. yeahhh  

    wouldnt trust my children with him

  38. Anonymous  

    semi charming jock party boy chill out columbia its been done before

  39. uhh  

    being handcuffed to a gurney on my 22nd birthday

    dont know many people who would brag about this

  40. Anonymous  

    a jock who likes drinking, going to concerts, oral sex and new york city?!! woahh thanks bwog really raising the bar!!!

    • ...  

      did you not know about the "track" button on bwog comments?
      you commented on this guy's profile 14 times in twenty minutes. i suppose i don't have to point this out, but it's exceedingly ironic that in every one of your sad, bitter little comments you criticize him for wasting his time partying, when you seem to be doing much the same thing. except you are lonely and on the internet and he has friends who seem to support and care for him immensely.
      i've never met the guy, but he seems nice enough to me. seriously, chill the fuck out. this is just embarrassing.

  41. thank you, bwog  

    for that ingenious Track button you have there! you can trace the line of grime down the whole wall!

  42. paul you're amazing  

    one of the best guys on this campus on so many different levels. sweet, down to earth, and seriously smart as hell. (and to the hater who posted the last 5 comments like an ass thinking that you can't press the track button and see that you're going overboard...everyone hates you go away)

  43. the track button  

    is hilarious. Nice to see that Paul has an avid fan - he's always been nice to me *shrug*

  44. Anonymous  

    track this! for those of you who know and love paul perhaps you know better than i but i have heard unending stories from a few sources and feel strong enough about what ive heard that think its worth being exposed. admittedly ive only met him once but through many mutual connections one thing is for sure and thats the fact that hes not a gentleman, "one of best guys on campus" or anything of the sort. im one voice but representing many i know, seeing hes chosen to be a voice of senior class given all i know and/or ive heard hes done is embarrassing

    • me  

      but you commented back to your own comment. :(

    • anonymous, but not an idiot  

      haha i did track this, and i think it is absolutely adorable how much you hate paul. particularly since you admit that you don't even know him. i know him, and he is my idol. i hope one day to be as amazing as paul, with resentful douchebags like you crying in my wake

    • all your comments  

      15 of them now, make me like this guy more. I hope you stay by your computer with hand in crouch commenting on bwog until the end of time.

  45. Haha

    You've met him once and you really feel the need to comment this many times? I understand not liking someone, but write a post like this and then calm down and go on with your day.

  46. oooooo...  

    Perhaps this lonely curmudgeon really does LIKE mr. wallace.

  47. Anonymous  

    hahah dammmm paul wahtd you do! this anonymous guy makes some good points lol btu ones enough

  48. SALEXK  

    I LOVE PAUL SO MUCH <3<3<3<#<3<3<3<3,3<<#

  49. bahaha  

    that one guy is freaking hilarious.

    also, his answer to the cheese question is awesome and really sweet.

  50. Libby  

    Dude, Paul. This was incredible. (And it makes me feel EVEN MORE pumped that I'm still ranked, at last time we checked in on the matter, fairly(?) high up on your list of favorite people ha.)

    Stellar senior wisdom. Bravo!

  51. Anonymous

    i saw you in jay today--can't kick the crush i've had on you for the past three years. i'm glad to know everyone else thinks you're as awesome as i thought you would be.

  52. aw  

    met this boy only once but this senior wisdom really makes me smile

  53. Ash  

    Kick ass man. I'll miss you Crunch

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