This holiday season, cozy up with a heartwarming tale of two estranged institutions, and how the magic of Christmas brought them back together. 

Scene one: 

Barnard, a big city (INSERT JOB HERE) is walking through NYC, latte in hand, hair perfectly blowing in the slight breeze. Most recent Christmas pop song plays in the background. Or some indie song from the 2000s. This can be a choose-your-own-adventure. 

Barnard: “No Mom, I can’t come home for Christmas this year, I am too busy working at my nondescript media job where I am moving up the ranks, but still make enough for my campus that envelopes four city blocks on the upper west side.”

Mom: “But honey, it’s CHRISTMAS!!!! HOW CAN U NOT COME HOME I’M MAKING GINGERBREAD. Plus I heard that Columbia is coming back as well.  Did you hear about their horrid divorce from NYU? I never liked NYU. Remind me again why you two didn’t work out?” *Sighs deeply as if to guilt Barnard for the lack of grandcolleges*

Barnard: You are not being inclusive in your holidays, it’s not just Christmas, plus I’m not a religiously affiliated institution. However, if I did have one it would be CoStar. Also, I don’t have time for love. I’m a career-woman and am therefore completely unfulfilled in my personal life minus the INSERT NAME OF ONE TOKEN MINORITY FRIEND that occasionally gives me advice. Plus, me and Columbia broke up a long time ago, I doubt they even think of me. 

Mom: Please just come home. 

Barnard: You have convinced me, maybe some small-town life will be good for me.


Barnard is at the local supermarket in their hometown. As they reach for a sleeve of Christmas cookie dough, they bump into Columbia, who is reaching for the same thing. With a graceful scream, Barnard tumbles taking down the entire display with them. Their glasses shatter on the floor, leaving them helpless. Picture Velma from Scooby-Doo. 

Columbia: Here let me help. *starts helping to gather up everything*

Barnard: Oh, hi, it’s you. You look well. *forgets about the being blind thing to tuck hair smoothly behind ear, think Debby Ryan but more alt* 

Columbia: I’m so sorry I’m such a—wait, Barnard? It’s been so long! I haven’t seen you since—

Barnard: Yeah, since the Christmas gift exchange last year. When you came with NYU. Remember? *that bitch* 

Columbia: *sheepishly rubbing their neck* ahh yes I remember. We uh—are no—

Barnard: Yeah I heard. You know that mother of mine. 


Columbia: So, uh we should grab coffee sometime. Just for old-times sake. 

Barnard: Nah sorry, my horoscope this week told me to lay low. Plus I just don’t have time. *looks wistfully at cookies* 

Columbia: Oh well then I guess I will just see you at Christmas dinner then? 

Barnard: What? 


Barnard: You invited Columbia to Christmas dinner?!?!?!??!?!??!? How could you?!

Mom: Oh honey, I needed to start this plot. What kind of movie do you think this is? The implication that I wasn’t going to invite him over without your knowledge or consent is frankly ridiculous and slightly hurtful. What kind of meddling mother do you take me for?

Barnard: *Ignoring absolutely everything that just broke the fourth wall as well as basically everything else* I guess I will just have to manage, it’s not like I have to talk to him.


Barnard spends the evening drinking in the corner alone, while Columbia networks. Everyone is enjoying themselves. 

Columbia comes up to Barnard.

Columbia: How are you this evening? 

Barnard: I’ll be better after a few more of these *holds up glass of eggnog* Family gatherings and all that.

Columbia: Yeah, I know right. Do you remember when our families would have these dinner parties when we were younger? After all, I lived right across the street from you. 

Barnard: Of course I remember, you would always tease me and throw snowballs at me (INSERT STEREOTYPICAL CHILDHOOD MEMORY HERE).

Columbia: It’s only because I liked you. 

Barnard: Quite frankly, the implication that that’s how you show affection displays the extent the patriarchy has infiltrated your mindset. We need to stop teaching young girls that when a man is being aggressive and a bully, that they like them.

Columbia: *laughs wistfully* I always love it when you talk patriarchy to me. Would you like to dance? 

Frank Sinatra Christmas song plays in the background, everyone suddenly starts dancing out of nowhere. Mistletoe appears out of thin air. 

Barnard: I’d love to. *does Debby Ryan hair thing even tho their hair is in a bun* 

The two of them begin dancing, eyes fixated on each other. The room around them turns into a blurred out sparkly desktop background. 

Barnard: I’m actually really glad you came. *smiling softly* 

Columbia: Me too, I missed you. 

Barnard: I missed you too, I really missed you reading Plato to me on Low steps. 

Columbia: You know, we could always go back. 

Barnard: I’d like that, but it just feels different now after NYU. 

Columbia: I never loved them. Look, Barnard I have something to tell you I lo- 

NYU walks in with a fur coat and sunglasses. 

NYU: Oh hi guys, I am so sorry I’m late but I was coming all the way from downtown. I brought artisanal mead from this local brewery/ performance art space in Soho. Not sure all of you guys will like it, it’s an acquired taste. 

Columbia: *walks up to them* I thought you weren’t coming till tomorrow.

NYU: Sorry, I couldn’t tomorrow, I’m going to a jam sesh with some Gallatin kids.

Columbia: Well can we do this later? 

Barnard comes up to them 

Barnard: Do what later? 

Columbia: Barnard, I – I swear it’s not what you think. 

Barnard: No Columbia, it’s exactly what I think. I can’t believe I fell for you again *runs out of door crying*

Columbia: Barnard — WAIT! 


Barnard is eating icecream while crying and listening to the acoustic version of a sad pop song. 

Suddenly there is a sharp knock at the door. 

Columbia: Barnard, it’s me. Open up. 

Barnard: Why? So you can hurt me all over again?

Columbia: Just give me a chance to explain. Please. 

Barnard: Why should I?

Columbia: Because I love you, I have always loved you. Ever since 6th grade. 

Barnard opens the door.

Barnard: I- I think I love you too. But you’re apparently still with NYU. 

Columbia: No, she was only there to sign the divorce papers. I wanted to make it official as soon as possible. Barnard, I was wrong to leave you, can I have another chance? 

Barnard: Wait, two seconds. *they drag Columbia outside, into the snow, even though neither is wearing a coat* Okay we are good to go, say it again. 

Columbia: I love you. I’ve always loved you, please, take me back. 

Barnard: Okay. 

Mistletoe hangs out of thin air above them. They kiss in the snow. The camera pans up and away from them, while “Silent Night” plays. Santa appears in the background with jingle bells and a “Merry Christmas.”


Snowy College Walk via Bwog Image Archives