What else can we light up on campus besides those trees…..

Columbia’s yearly tree lighting on college walk is one of the school’s most popular and visually pleasing traditions, dating back to a while ago, probably. The mellow glow of hundreds of small lights adorning the trees adds a sense of beauty and serenity to the campus’s grand neo-classical architecture and the seemingly infinite urban sprawl of New York City. 

So why do we stop at just the trees? If Columbia really wants to ring in the winter season with festive, yet respectful decoration, why not spread the love across all six square blocks, or eight (if you include East Campus), or 10 or 12  (if you include Barnard as either four full or half blocks). Hell, why not include Manhattanville and the medical center, or even the rest of Morningside heights?

Some festive decorations could really spruce up the more utilitarian aspects of campus, like “the big ugly statue on top of the law building entrance;” if Columbia really wanted to, they could maybe even “make them into a holiday village.” Less visible but no less legitimate, Christmas lights could add some “mood lighting” to the Butler stacks. And why not increase visibility by going for “All of the lampposts. Every one.”

In fact, lighting could have a practical use in certain settings. Adding some lights to the Schermerhorn extension might make it easier to find. Covering the notoriously uneven brick “ground of college walk wouldn’t make it any more of a tripping hazard than it is already,” and could maybe even smooth it out a little bit. If the striking student workers want to literally keep administration up at night, they could take aim at brightening PrezBo’s bedroom.

The entire brick, stone, and copper layout of the campus could benefit from some seasonal cheer. Luminatively TP’ing the “east dick fountain (NOT west)” would complement the campus’s geometric/architectural imbalance provided by Carman, Lerner, and Northwest Corner. Putting “a giant ball of holiday lights on the sundial” would add a new dimension to the solar symbolism. “Covering the names of all the old white dudes on Butler so they’re unreadable” would more accurately reflect their writing. “That pit in front of the International Affairs Building” could probably use some help, too, as could “the (apparently defunct?) Columbia Greenhouse.”

Highlighting statues just generally seems like a good idea. Putting some lights on Alma’s owl would further emphasize the importance of the whole wisdom thing, as would “the thinker statue in front of Philosophy.” Doing the same for “the statues of Alexander Hamilton and Thomas Jefferson” would give us the valorizing Hamilton sequel we’ve all been clamoring for. And although not technically a statue, maybe we should put “LEDs around the very berry salad in Ferris because that shit slaps.”

And honestly, why not go all out? Given the amount of work that goes into maintaining the impeccably green, well-trimmed grass lawns, why not just “light the tip of every blade of grass?” And while we’re going all-out, let’s just put “LEDs in between every brick on campus walk! Boom. Flashing lights, holiday acknowledgment lights, celebration lights, party lights, and general walkway lighting.” “Every wall on campus should have a holiday light show playing on it.”

In conclusion, yes.

college walk on film via Bwarchives