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RoomHop: Fairy Tale Edition

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Roomhopping returns with Disney dorm decor. Bwog’s Sam Schipani takes a trip back in time…

Beulah Sims-Agbabiaka, CC ’15, is loading a Princess Tiana doll into a care package for her sister while watching Princess and the Frog on her personal TV. “It’s comforting,” Beulah explains.  “I watch it about once every two weeks.”

Even though Princess and the Frog isn’t her favorite movie — it ranks #4 behind Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory, West Side Story, and The Wiz — Beulah thought the theme “felt right” when she was planning her dorm decor. Beulah may hail from Richmond, California, but she adores New Orleans culture. When she visited The Big Easy the summer after 10th grade, she was enticed by the balance between a warm country feel and city life.  And, of course, jazz — Beulah is double majoring in political science and jazz studies, and plays the upright bass.

To decorate, Beulah has slowly amassed various Princess and the Frog themed items. From a very fortunate Secret Santa exchange, she received a stuffed frog, a Louis plushie (the trumpet playing crocodile), and Tiana blanket. A poster from the movie premiere, to which Beulah wore her tiara, covers her drab dorm wall. Mardi Gras masks and beads add some New Orleans flare.

But Beulah’s room hasn’t yet reached its fairy tale ending.  She’s had her eye on flower-shaped lights. Target even makes Princess and the Frog sheets, which unfortunately don’t come in the required Twin XL size. “I considered sewing on an extension, but I thought that would be a little much.” Beulah jokes.

But why Princess and the Frog?  Why not Cinderella or the Little Mermaid?  “Tiana was the first black princess, which was empowering for me,” Beulah explains.  “The movie also has a message of following your dreams, which is exactly what I did when I came to Columbia.”

“Also, Prince Naveem is the hottest prince,” she adds, and then pauses to reconsider.  “Except maybe Hercules.  I think they’re tied.”

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13 Comments

  1. Anonymous  

    I can already see all the shameful hookups happening there... among the fluffy toys...

  2. Anonymous  

    she used incandescent light bulbs. uncool.

  3. WOW  

    U can tell she is class of 2015!

  4. Anonymous

    wow sure is unnecessarily snarky in here

    anyway, I think this is a really heartwarming theme. I also love the pic of the prez/first lady strolling in washington. :)

  5. umm

    yea good luck getting laid

  6. Anonymous  

    does she live in a windowless room?

  7. Anonymous  

    You'd think that when searching for an African-American role model you would go for someone real who, you know, did something empowering or inspiring. Not Disney's innocuous attempt to market towards a demographic of color. But whatever floats your boat.

    • disagree

      having a room plastered with images, figurines, and memorabilia of a real life person is pushing it a bit, don't you think? (imagine having bedcovers of an actual person.) it's a bit more socially acceptable to be obsessed in that way with a show/movie/toy than it is to be with a person, i think. those usually come off as "creepy."

      plus, who's to say princess tiana isn't empowering or inspiring for girls of color? even if she isn't real, the ability to be a role model to those girls is empowering in itself, isn't it? we make characters real and influential by believing in them as a reflection of ourselves. we find common themes and inspiring dreams in many different ways, and criticizing someone because they find an aesthetic and mental inspiration from a cartoon person of color instead of a breathing person of color shows a narrowness of understanding and is just a great way to marginalizing a person.

      (and whose to say that Beaulah doesn't have real people of color as role models, too? it's possible to have more than one.)

  8. Anonymous

    Hercules wasn't a prince.

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