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What If We Studied On An Incline In Lerner…… Hahaha JK….. Unless….

Bwogger Zach Fisher details his first hand experience of studying on an incline in Lerner, and discusses his confusion at how students can productively study there. 

There are 21 recognized libraries on Columbia University’s campus. Alfred Lerner Hall is NOT a recognized library. In fact, Lerner is not even an ‘unrecognized’ library or a library period. Yet, there are many among the student body who would disagree with me, and who use Lerner – specifically the ramps in Lerner – as a prime study spot. First off, incline studiers who do you think you are? Secondly, WHAT THE FUCK is wrong with you?

At first, I thought: maybe I’m just being inconsiderate. There could be some secret to studying on the Lerner ramps I just haven’t figured out yet. Perhaps the fact that your blood would completely rush to the right side of your head will enhances reading and PSET abilities. So, after much thought and consideration, I realized I had to try it to complain about it. Let’s start this again.

I Studied on an Incline in Lerner and it FUCKING SUCKED

It was 6pm on a Sunday evening. I walked into Alfred Lerner Hall, picked up a Café East California roll, swiped myself in, and began the long circular walk up the ramps. Here is when I encountered my first problem. Each table has two chairs evenly spaced apart with their backs to the ramp, and at each table exactly one chair was taken. Now I usually don’t mind studying next to random strangers, but also the last time I checked those random strangers are never leaning into my personal space when I’m Buter. Finally, after walking up the fourth floor I found myself one completely empty table. I sat down, unpacked my sushi, opened my laptop, and attempted to focus. Attempted is the key word here because very soon I realized it was IMPOSSIBLE to focus. It wasn’t the volume. No not at all, I’m well accustomed to studying with headphones and music so that couldn’t be it. In fact, I don’t think I can study in complete silence, so the constantly fluctuating noise level seemed like an ideal situation to me. What made it impossible to focus was the fact that every minute or so somebody would be walking up the ramp behind me. That person would then make it their personal business to stare my computer screen down the entire time they walked past. I understand that my paper on American civilization is interesting, but it should not be your SINGULAR concern at that time. Pull out your phone. Talk to your friends. Walk briskly looking straight forward thinking about your destination. Please find something to do other then judging me for my lack of progress. It makes me fucking anxious and then I can’t get my work done!

Now, in case you forgot where I was let me remind you. I’m seated on an incline. Attempting to study. Constantly being judged. To make matters worse after about five minutes I started to feel the blood rush to the right side of my head. The left side of my brain – which controls all creative functions – was screaming for help. I meanwhile mistook this plea as a cry for hunger, so I reached out to grab a piece of my Café East California roll but my hand slammed into the cold hard table. The California roll while this was happening had silently slid to the other side of my laptop. Why had it slid you may ask? Cause I was seated on AN INCLINE. Maybe ten minutes had passed since I sat down, but already I found myself running out of Lerner. In the distance Butlers light were shimmering. Shimmering with order and uniformity. As I walked up the grand staircase and seated myself at a very normal horizontal table, I was left with two distinct conclusions.


  1. People who study on an incline in Lerner are either: A. crazy, or, B. not human.
  2. I now have so much personal respect for you if you can productively study on an incline in Lerner.

The building currently known as Alfred Lerner Hall via Wikimedia Commons

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