A ranking of study spots based on how much work you actually need to do

Choosing a study spot is something of an art form. It requires serious consideration of the task at hand. There are days when not getting your work done is simply not an option. And then there are the (glorious) days when you have some reading you probably should do but you’re more than ready to leave it behind the moment something mildly exciting comes your way. So, for people on all parts of the study spectrum, here’s a ranking from “if you talk to me I’ll probably kill you” to “I will literally use any excuse to stop doing my work.”


  1. John Hay Library



The Hay is the place to go when you simply need to zero in, get in the zone, and just get down to business. You pretty much have no other option than to be alone with your thoughts. The sheer weight of the silence will physically force your fingers to type that paper you’ve been dreading. You will feel shame for scrolling through your Facebook feed for the fifteenth time, and although everyone else is deep inside their studious worlds, they will know that you are procrastinating, and they might judge you.


  1. The SciLi


This is where you go when you need to burn the midnight oil, since the Hay closes at 10 p.m. and, let’s be real, you’re lucky if your book is open by 10. On the SciLi’s quiet floor, there is actually nothing to distract you. In fact, you will probably want to do your work in order to get out of that concrete dungeon as fast as possible. If that’s not enough, the tangible stress floating through the air should do the trick.

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PSA: Blue Room closing at 7 p.m. tonight

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What the Blue Room fridges look like right now

Looks like all the nice weather was too much for the Blue Room! The eatery will be closing at 7 p.m. tonight due to refrigerator malfunctions. Though Dining Services is working to get them repaired as soon as possible, the Blue Room will also be closed tomorrow and potentially Wednesday. Check the Blue Room twitter for updates.

Go get your food while you still can!

[Update: The Blue Room is closed again on Wednesday, April 13.]

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The Underground Coffee Shop: A review

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The third cup of coffee ever sold at the Underground.

It’s hardly surprising that a beverage with such a storied intellectual history–something something Enlightenment coffee shops exchange of ideas AP European history–should be so popular at Brown. Coffee, and with the businesses it fosters, is an integral part of College Hill, from the shops that dot Thayer and Wickenden to the syrupy coffee-milk that is a unique staple of the beautifully strange state of we live in.

And yet there’s much to suggest that the coffee scene here isn’t quite as unified as it could be; witness the trek necessary to get to Dave’s Coffee and/or Coffee Exchange, the lackluster options at Starbucks and Blue State, and the plainly mediocre stuff they serve at campus establishments (RIP Bear Buzz).

Most campus establishments, that is. The Underground, which opened Monday, appears to be the coffee shop that College Hill both deserves and needs. It combines the geographic centrality of the Blue Room, the expertise of Dave’s Coffee (which supplies the roasts themselves), and the enthusiasm of the Brown/RISD Coffee Society (who were consulted for proper brewing methods).

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Brown, meet the Underground Coffee Shop

The Underground, that space directly under the Blue Room whose name you might have forgotten, has a storied history. Evidence of its past as a key player in Brown social life is on display today. Take the bar on the room’s wall: do you think that was just for show? Nope. Back in the Wild West days of legal drinking for all those 18 years of age and older, there was a genuine bar down there. Indeed, the Underground might be worthy of its own Ra Ra Brunonia post. It has been the host of everything from Funk Nites to IFF screenplay reads, with a few desperate last-minute study breaks in between.

On Monday, however, the Underground will take on a new role. Just in time to revive Brunonia from a crippling post-Spring Weekend group hangover, a group of students will be launching a coffee shop that has been months in the making. Katie Murphy ’16, Yousef Hilmy ’16, and Viktor Gavrielov ’15 have been working with SAO, the Blue Room, and even President Paxson to radically reimagine the space.

The grand opening is on Monday at 9 a.m., and they’ll be serving until 2 p.m. Though Opening Day will only be 5 hours long, Hilmy promises they will eventually be open for “long hours.” If you can’t make it to the Underground before the early closing, don’t fret, because there will be an opening party from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. that night. You can find more information about the Underground Coffee Shop on their (freakishly popular) Facebook page here.

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1,000 ways to die at Brown


As morbid as it might be, there are plenty of ways to die at Brown. College is a dangerous place. Winter is a dangerous season. The new Campus Snapstory encourages students to do attention-grabbing things. The buildings are 200 years old. You never know what’s gonna happen, so you may as well be wary of the ways you might find your demise here on campus. Most are uncontrollable, but you may as well know, in case there’s any way to prepare for the danger that lies ahead.

1. Being smushed when the person in front of you on line for the Ratty neglects to hold the door open. Or being blown backwards, flying up, and getting smashed on the inside Ratty doors when those 1,000 mph winds are unleashed while trying to leave. (Basically, you’re screwed pre- and post-Cajun pasta.)

2. In something that looks like a scene from I Am Legend, you are climbing to the third floor in Health Services and the slanted spiral staircase, in slow motion, collapses beneath you.

3. Sledding down College Hill and making a grand entrance right into the below-freezing Providence River. We’re talking a deadly drowning/hypothermia combo.

4. On that note — being impaled by a six-foot dangling icicle.

5. A big disk (is that a light? a fan? a UFO?) that hangs from the Ratty ceiling falls and lands right on your head, creating something that looks like this:



(And obviously you’ll just be sitting there, like, “Oh, bother.”)

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Theories why the Blue Room refuses to spread cream cheese


The Blue Room is a great place to get a good meal. Where else but the Blue Room can you walk in at10 a.m. and get a chocolate chip muffin, a sushi roll, and an iced coffee? Despite all the love and admiration for the Blue Room, it has one major problem: why won’t we spread cream cheese? I work for BuDS and have never gotten a real answer. This may seem like a ridiculous problem to have with such a great place. Thanks to extensive socratic research and analysis, compiled here are the best theories of why we won’t spread for you.

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Rhode Island has put stringent regulations on the cream cheese business.

As many people know, Rhode Island is a corrupt very particular state. It has laws and regulations that are unique, perhaps, to its Puritanic heritage. Some examples of rational laws in Rhode Island are as follows:

1) It is against the law to throw pickle juice at a trolley.

2) It is against the law to sell toothpaste and a toothbrush to the same customer on a Sunday.

These make sense, and they reflect the strict social controls the Ocean State has drafted over the years to uphold its morally sound society. Would it be so crazy to think that Rhode Island passed an anti-cream-cheese-spreading law?

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Brown has a financially selfish ulterior motive.

Brown has made some ambitious investments in the butter industry. Brown will take any opportunity it can to deter its students from using cream cheese. Fact.

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