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Dear Bwog: When Your T.A. Asks You Out

Dear Bwog is back! But we’re changin’ it up a little this time. First you’ll hear from Bwog’s self-proclaimed ”decent heterosexual male Suzy May.” Then, one of our Bwoggals weighs in. Bwog…we have a split personality! Send in your own trials and tribulations to tips@bwog.com.

Dear Bwog,

My T.A. just asked me out via e-mail:

Hope the exam went well for you on Monday. I was wondering if you wanted to get coffee sometime?

See you soon,
xxxx

What should I do?!

Sincerely,
Titillated at Teacher’s College


BwogBoy’s response:

Dear TATC,

A T.A. Oh dear. How taboo, how scandalous….how….eh.

T.A.s run the gamut from overachieving Juniors preparing their med school applications, to underfunded “grabos” filling their time between showers at Dodge. That’s a pretty wide and varied segment of the population to make any sort of general sort of judgment on. With only four weeks left to the semester, I say go for it. Nothing about the status of T.A. technically prevents coffee.What’s the worst that can happen?

Some awkwardness if things don’t work out is the universal risk when it comes to a single date. With a month left, and hopefully a few absences still uncashed, I’m sure you can stomach it. If on the other hand, you were hoping to reap some academic benefits from this experience– let go of the dream. I know more than a handful of students who would have gladly given up their virtue for a grade boost. Unfortunately T.A.s are again driven, underfed creatures (and a valuable part of our academic structure), they are not going to risk their job or that precious recommendation letter for a quick hump.Finally, remember that T.A. stands for ‘teacher assistant’. Just in case the allure of the acronym and tastefully done PowerPoint layout are mimicking attraction where there actually isn’t.

BwogGirl offers some wise words:

Dear TATC,

BwogBoy seems to have gotten it about right. Your T.A. is just a person with a little more power, and unlike a boss or some other superior, this power only lasts until May 13th, while the story you can tell your friends about the time you went on a date with your T.A. will last at least through the end of the summer. So if you’re interested in your T.A., even just a friend, I say go for it. It’ll be fun, or at least different, and if it turns you like each other beyond coy glances over your turtlenecks during discussion section, all the better!

That said, make sure you’re both in this for the right reasons. If you suspect you might be looking for a better grade, or that your T.A. will try and use their power to make you date/have sex with/buy cookies for him or her, say no! And lucky for you no matter what your answer to the e-mail will be, it’ll be much easier to say it over e-mail than in person or by phone. And the established method of communication means you and your T.A. never have to acknowledge one another in class if you don’t want to! Take the e-mail as an opportunity, and do with it what you want.

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58 Comments

  • yo says:

    @yo free lunch. why not?

    1. Rule number 1 says:

      @Rule number 1 never get caught. The TA is an idiot for sending it via email.

  • Anonymous says:

    @Anonymous clearly a no brainer. go for it.

  • cc '13 says:

    @cc '13 I just wanna have sex

    1. Girls don't make passes says:

      @Girls don't make passes at boys who don’t wear their glasses.

    2. I just had sex says:

      @I just had sex and it felt so good.

  • Anonymous says:

    @Anonymous Lecherous professor : sexual harassment on campus / Billie Wright Dziech, Linda Weiner.
    Dziech, Billie Wright, 1941-
    Urbana : University of Illinois Press, 1990.
    Call Number: LC212.862 .D95 1990
    Location: Barnard
    Not checked out

    1. see, this is why says:

      @see, this is why no one likes the Spec. At least bwog gave good advice instead of a list of books about the subject written from a legal perspective. Either understand what college life is actually like or just fuck off.

  • Anonymous says:

    @Anonymous Results action navigation bar

    SelectPage

    LC212.862 .D95 1990
    Lecherous professor : sexual harassment on campus / Billie Wright Dziech, Linda Weiner.
    Dziech, Billie Wright, 1941-
    Urbana : University of Illinois Press, 1990.

    LC212.862 .D957 1998
    Sexual harassment in higher education : reflections and new perspectives / Billie Wright Dziech, Michael W. Hawkins.
    Dziech, Billie Wright, 1941-
    New York : Garland Pub., 1998.

    LC212.862 .D957 1998
    Sexual harassment in higher education : reflections and new perspectives / Billie Wright Dziech, Michael W. Hawkins.
    Dziech, Billie Wright, 1941-
    New York : Garland Pub., 1998.

    LC212.862 .F58 2010
    Unsafe in the ivory tower : the sexual victimization of college women / Bonnie S. Fisher, Leah E. Daigle, Francis T. Cullen.
    Fisher, Bonnie, 1959-
    Los Angeles : Sage Publications, c2010.

    LC212.862 .F58 2010
    Unsafe in the ivory tower : the sexual victimization of college women / Bonnie S. Fisher, Leah E. Daigle, Francis T. Cullen.
    Fisher, Bonnie, 1959-
    Los Angeles : Sage Publications, c2010.

    LC212.862 .F72 2001
    Sexual harassment as an ethical issue in academic life / Leslie Pickering Francis.
    Francis, Leslie, 1946-
    Lanham, Md. : Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, c2001.

    LC212.862 .G35 1997
    Feminist accused of sexual harassment / Jane Gallop.
    Gallop, Jane, 1952-
    Durham : Duke University Press, 1997.

    LC212.862 .G35 1997
    Feminist accused of sexual harassment / Jane Gallop.
    Gallop, Jane, 1952-
    Durham : Duke University Press, 1997.

    LC212.862 .G35 1997
    Feminist accused of sexual harassment / Jane Gallop.
    Gallop, Jane, 1952-
    Durham : Duke University Press, 1997.

    LC212.862 .G46 2003
    Gendered futures in higher education : critical perspectives for change / Becky Ropers-Huilman, editor.

    Albany : State University of New York Press, c2003.

    LC212.862 .G46 2003
    Gendered futures in higher education : critical perspectives for change / Becky Ropers-Huilman, editor.

    Albany : State University of New York Press, c2003.

    LC212.862 .I95 1990
    Ivory power : sexual harassment on campus / edited by Michele A. Paludi.

    Albany, N.Y. : State University of New York Press, c1990.

    LC212.862 .I95 1990
    Ivory power : sexual harassment on campus / edited by Michele A. Paludi.

    Albany, N.Y. : State University of New York Press, c1990.

    LC212.862 .M35 1997
    Poisoned ivy : lesbian and gay academics confronting homophobia / Toni A. H. McNaron.
    McNaron, Toni A. H.
    Philadelphia : Temple University Press, 1997.

    LC212.862 .M35 1997
    Poisoned ivy : lesbian and gay academics confronting homophobia / Toni A. H. McNaron.
    McNaron, Toni A. H.
    Philadelphia : Temple University Press, 1997.

    LC212.862 .P35 1991
    Academic and workplace sexual harassment : a resource manual / Michele A. Paludi and Richard B. Barickman.
    Paludi, Michele Antoinette.
    Albany, N.Y. : State University of New York Press, c1991.

    LC212.862 .P35 1991
    Academic and workplace sexual harassment : a resource manual / Michele A. Paludi and Richard B. Barickman.
    Paludi, Michele Antoinette.
    Albany, N.Y. : State University of New York Press, c1991.

    LC212.862 .P35 1998
    Sexual harassment, work, and education : a resource manual for prevention / Michele A. Paludi and Richard B. Barickman.
    Paludi, Michele Antoinette.
    Albany : State University of New York Press, c1998.

    LC212.862 .P35 2003
    Academic and workplace sexual harassment : a handbook of cultural, social science, management, and legal perspectives / edited by Michele Paludi and Carmen A. Paludi, Jr.

    Westport, Conn. : Praeger, 2003.

    LC212.862 .P35 2003
    Academic and workplace sexual harassment : a handbook of cultural, social science, management, and legal perspectives / edited by Michele Paludi and Carmen A. Paludi, Jr.

    Westport, Conn. : Praeger, 2003.

    LC212.862 .S47 1998
    Sexual harassment & sexual consent / Barry M. Dank, editor-in-chief ; Roberto Refinetti, managing editor.

    New Brunswick, N.J. : Transaction Publishers, c1998.

    LC212.862 .S48 1997
    Sexual harassment on campus : a guide for administrators, faculty, and students / Bernice R. Sandler, Robert J. Shoop, editors.

    Boston, MA : Allyn and Bacon, c1997.

    LC212.862 .S48 1997
    Sexual harassment on campus : a guide for administrators, faculty, and students / Bernice R. Sandler, Robert J. Shoop, editors.

    Boston, MA : Allyn and Bacon, c1997.

    LC212.862 .S49 1996
    Sexual harassment on college campuses : abusing the ivory power / edited by Michele A. Paludi.

    Albany : State University of New York Press, c1996.

    LC212.862 .S49 1996
    Sexual harassment on college campuses : abusing the ivory power / edited by Michele A. Paludi.

    Albany : State University of New York Press, c1996.

  • Anonymous says:

    @Anonymous I need some Bwog Weather to brighten up my Sunday night!!

  • Anonymous says:

    @Anonymous how about you just forward that email to the professor?

    1. Anonymous says:

      @Anonymous I guess if you wanted to be a complete asshole

      1. Anonymous says:

        @Anonymous use it to blackmail him for a better grade

  • Anonymous says:

    @Anonymous lolllllllllll i know the person who got this email. the ta is a grad student….pretty creepy

  • do it!! says:

    @do it!! but just wait until the semester is over–ask them if they can wait until may. if they sincerely want to get to know ya more, it’ll be understandable.

  • HELLO? says:

    @HELLO? BWOG WEATHER! BWOG WEATHER!

    1. Anonymous says:

      @Anonymous The creators of bwog weather are abroad…

      1. Sad says:

        @Sad They should have passed the torch. Imagine, like, an Alex Hare Bwogweather. That would be hysterical.

  • no longer an option says:

    @no longer an option He knows you forwarded it to Bwog at this point. Even if it’s anonymized he’s likely terrified at this point and wants nothing more to do with you.

  • Anonymous says:

    @Anonymous Grad student?
    All the better.
    Go for it.

  • Anonymous says:

    @Anonymous do grad students read bwog?

  • Anonymous says:

    @Anonymous i know this person too. hilarious and creepy if you know the whole story

    1. Anonymous says:

      @Anonymous what’s the whole story? keep it anonymous, but do tell!

      1. Anonymous says:

        @Anonymous its not my place but its a lot creepier than it looks. it’s not a class where the TAs and students have much interaction apart from recitation…and this guy is being persistent. its just weird for her but she’s just interested in avoiding anything awkward. she probably wouldn’t be happy with me posting this at all but this email also was sent a long time ago and she just didnt reply…guy is still being creep city!!!

        1. Anonymous says:

          @Anonymous how is he being creepy? i mean, if they interact enough outside of recitation, it shouldn’t really be that creepy. though i call his professionalism into question if he’s asking her out during the semester. i at least waited till the semester was over to ask my TA out..

          1. Anonymous says:

            @Anonymous liek i said its not my place to say..but i should clarify: they do not have any interaction…at all..just when he’s creeeepin

        2. Anonymous says:

          @Anonymous wait is his name erin, because if so (this guy is always at hung. pastry) stay away, what a creep

  • LOL says:

    @LOL “Finally, remember that T.A. stands for ‘teacher assistant’. Just in case the allure of the acronym and tastefully done PowerPoint layout are mimicking attraction where there actually isn’t.”

    Ok, that part made me laugh a lot.

  • columbia prof says:

    @columbia prof Profs read bwog too. Here’s the thing: this is totally unacceptable. It’s creepy. So ask yourself: if this person is knowingly willing to do something inappropriate today, why kinds of things will they want to do tomorrow. I shudder to think.

    This person can’t grade your work anymore. It’s really not fair to you. Ask for another TA to do it. And if there aren’t other TAs, well, my advice is to tell the prof. If it were my class, I would want to know. I would be mortified. I would be enraged. I actually wouldn’t want to find something like this out. But I’d want to know.

    1. hahahaha says:

      @hahahaha good one

      1. Anonymous says:

        @Anonymous hmm prof writing from on campus server (the crown) at 11:43 PM on a sunday….

        1. Are columbia profs says:

          @Are columbia profs not on Columbia IPs?

        2. profs on campus says:

          @profs on campus we’re in university housing just around the corner from you, and therefore on the CU servers 24/7

    2. um says:

      @um no one wants your crummy advice, I think if this girl was decent enough, she would’ve just stepped up and told the TA how she felt (Oh I’d love to suck your cock OR oh hey I’m not interested in you). The fact that she feels the need to ask an outside source on how she feels reinforces the entire female population on Columbia’s campus. They’re fucking drama queens, and need the attention and love to expose others. Goddam prudes.

      1. Anonymous says:

        @Anonymous Hey, I didn’t send it in to Bwog. I don’t really give a shit, just thought it was hilarious. This happened a long time ago.

        1. well then? says:

          @well then? Did you fuck him or not?

          1. ooooooooo damn says:

            @ooooooooo damn she def fucked himmmm

        2. track is wack says:

          @track is wack hilarity

      2. uhhh says:

        @uhhh chill the fuck out. its just something funny you douche.

        stop being jealous cuz you dont get any

        1. Anonymous says:

          @Anonymous have you not heard of ‘track’? is this how you speak to students in your class columbia prof?

    3. goober says:

      @goober Profs who live in Columbia housing have Columbia IP’s — there is a LOT of prof. Housing around campus

  • wish my says:

    @wish my TA asked me out…

  • dude says:

    @dude whatever just shag him girl itll be a great story

  • hmmm says:

    @hmmm will you get coffee with me? i promise im not a tA

    1. Hooah says:

      @Hooah Please stop. The track button is embarrassing you.

      1. yea says:

        @yea makes us question if there ever was a TA who supposedly sent you the email.

  • Anonymous says:

    @Anonymous not on Columbia IPs?

  • Veteran TA Dater says:

    @Veteran TA Dater I went on a few coffee dates with my grad student TA while taking a course. With the huge age difference, the relationship never developed into romance. He was so into his studies and writing his dissertation and I was more interested in partying and having a social life. He approached the dating quite professionally. We never discussed the other students in the class or grading. We kept business and pleasure separate. And severing the relationship did not jeopardize my grade. I’m thrilled I had the experience to ineract with someone older and wiser and already set in his career path. If Columbia really seeks to graduate a worldly student body, it should consider integrating TA dating into the core curriculum…It certainly would beat the global core!

    1. lmao says:

      @lmao “Date a TA” would be a great Core req, and possible jumpstart the lack of romance on this campus

    2. ... says:

      @... lol columbia kids. huge age difference is what? probably 5 years? y’all need to get out of morningside once in a while.

      1. Anonymous says:

        @Anonymous Let’s say the student is 20 and the TA, as you say, is 25 (because of the huge 5-year gap). Now that student is dating somebody who is 25% older, a large difference at our age. I’m assuming that the student is female, though there is no mention of the gender. If that’s the case, have you ever met a 20-year-old boy? Yes, boy is the correct term. Now, give them five more years to mature, and like a fine wine, they taste a little better. The difference in a mere five years is astounding.

        1. *APPLAUSE* says:

          @*APPLAUSE* and that is why i only date/sleep with older men.

    3. Veteran TA Dater says:

      @Veteran TA Dater Let me clarify. I’m a gay male. I was 18 at the time. He was 27. A 9 yr age diff. or 50% older. It was rather kinky. Haha! But in all seriousness, we had some interesting conversations and now we’ve moved on.

  • the one being tracked says:

    @the one being tracked my bad, all a joke. the real person hasn’t posted on this yet..poor gal. still hilarious though

  • I bet says:

    @I bet Charlie Sheen fucked a TA or two in his time.

    1. Yes says:

      @Yes If by T.A. you mean Transvestite Addict.

  • who cares about privacy? says:

    @who cares about privacy? The person who emailed Dear Bwog probably should have kept it quiet… really. Be an adult, have some discretion.

    1. Anonymous says:

      @Anonymous shut your face pie hole, guess you shouldn’t have sent an email to a student whose work your grading, worried much?

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