161 Things

The following list is known as the “161 Things Every Cornellian Should Do” before they complete their four undergraduate years and graduate. “Why 161? That’s such a random number!” you might exclaim. The number 161 comes from the number of steps it takes to get to the top of the iconic McGraw tower, fondly referred to as only “the clocktower” by students.

McGraw Tower

McGraw Tower

As I complete each of these tasks (or have already completed) I’m going to cross them off the list. I don’t think I’m gonna get to all of them–partly because I actually can’t do some of them–but I’m sure as hell gonna try. I’ll post individual blogs about the adventures that come with the 161 things. Wish me luck!

1. Make the library into your bedroom and have sex in the stacks

2. Finally meet the dazzling Denice Cassaro (Lucky for me, I never EVER received an over-zealous email from her)

3. Camp out overnight (re: sleep on AstroTurf) for hockey tickets

4. Go to the Cornell-Harvard men’s hockey game and throw fish on the ice

5. Sing along to “We didn’t go to Harvard” with the Cayuga’s Waiters

6. Sled down Libe Slope during a snow storm

7. Take Hotel Administration 430: Introduction to Wines

8. Streak across the Arts Quad

9. Take Psych 101 (This is hardly a class… it was more like an awesome television show every time I stepped into Bailey Hall)

10. Test out Olin Library’s musically calibrated steps by throwing stones on them

11. Attempt sake bombing at Plum Tree or Miyake in Collegetown (In this case, “attempt” means “successfully complete.” Sake bombing is probably one of the greatest ways to get drunk).

12. Order ice cream at the Dairy Bar

13. Climb the rock wall in Bartels Hall

14. Listen to a full chimes concert from the clock tower and guess the songs played

15. Register for classes during Freshman Orientation, then switch out of every single one by the time Add/Drop ends (In my case, completely MISS pre-enroll for freshman and scramble to enroll in classes during add/drop, just so I could be considered a full time student)

16. Wear flip-flops to class in January

17. Go to the Fuertes Observatory on North Campus and gaze at meteor showers

18. Have a snowball fight in May

19. Milk a cow

20. Skip class to play frisbee on the Arts Quad (Frisbee is fun. But usually when I skip class, it’s the first nice day of spring and I’m sitting on the quad getting tan)

21. Bury a bottle of Bacardi on the Slope. Dig it up on Slope Day.

22. Pick apples at the Cornell Orchards

23. Attend the Apple Festival on the Commons

24. Flirt with your professor

25. Bomb a prelim

26. Ace the next one to save your grade

27. Attend Hotelie prom

28. Meet Happy Dave from Okenshield’s

29. Turn your face blue from screaming at midnight before the first finals

30. Get heartburn at the Chili Cook-off on the Commons

31. Enjoy Ithaca’s two months of warm weather — spend a summer here!

32. Go to a Shabbat dinner at 104 West (CornellCard it)

33. Watch the AAP students parade down East Avenue on Dragon Day

34. Enjoy corn nuggets at The Nines

35. Build a snow penis or count how many you see around campus

36. Dress up and view The Rocky Horror Picture Show at Risley

37. Take a class you think is impossible just for fun

38. Go on a wine tour

39. Kiss on the suspension bridge at midnight

40. Sleep through your alarm for a 1:25 class

41. Shop at the Friends of the Library Book Sale

42. Get out of a University parking ticket

43. Buy an Ithaca Is Gorges t-shirt, then get sick of wearing it and buy a variation (Ithaca Is Gangsta, Vaginas Are Gorges, Ithaca Is Long Island …)

44. Learn the “Alma Mater,” “Evening Song” and “Give My Regards to Davy”

45. Attend an opening at the Johnson Museum of Art

46. Smuggle food from the dining hall and run for your life as they try to get back your stolen cookies (What difference is it reeeeealllyyyy gonna make if I grab that extra apple?)

47. Do the Walk of Shame (Not my proudest moment. Sorry, Mom)

48. Have dinner at a professor’s house

49. Get wasted at a professor’s house

50. Have lunch with President Skorton in Trillium; ask if he’s done with that burger

51. Play a game of tag in the Kroch Library stacks

52. See a play in the Schwartz Center

53. Rush the field at the last home football game of the season

54. Attend a Cornell Night

55. Gamble at Turning Stone (try not to lose money)

56. Watch dancers fly through the air at a Bhangra show

57. Have a midnight picnic in the Cornell Plantations

58. Wait in line for half an hour for a salad at the Terrace Those salads are just SO GOOD.

59. Ignore any and all “No Winter Maintenance” signs … slip and fall on the icy stairs

60. Sit in Libe Café when you have no work to do and watch the worried studiers down gallons of coffee

61. Write an angry letter to the editor of The Sun

62. Go to Wegmans on a Friday or Saturday night

63. Explore the secret underground tunnel between Uris and Olin libraries

64. See the library’s Rare Book Collection

65. Pretend you are Harry Potter and study in the Law School library (looks like Hogwarts)

66. See the brain collection in Uris Hall

67. Eat at Taverna Banfi (formerly Banfi’s) and charge it to CornellCard

68. Buy beer at Jason’s in Collegetown and charge it to CityBucks

69. Take PAPL 2010: Magical Mushrooms, Mischievous Molds

70. Take part in a psychology experiment

71. Take an unplanned nap in a library

72. Take over a building

73. According to legend, watch a virgin cross the Arts Quad and then witness A.D. White and Ezra Cornell shake hands

74. Live through an Ithaca blizzard and tell your friends how you survived frostbite (Oh, and don’t forget to tell them how the University didn’t cancel class, either).

75. Throw a flaming pumpkin into the gorge

76. Play co-ed intramural innertube water polo

77. Spend all your lectures figuring out the day’s Sudoku. While sitting for the final, wish you had taken notes instead.

78. Hook up with your T.A.

79. Order a PMP at the Hot Truck

80. Play trivia at Ruloff’s on Sunday nights

81. Go back for karaoke night on Monday

82. Dress in pastels for ’80s Night on Tuesdays at Johnny O’s (sadly, after my freshman year, Johnny O’s closed. It has been replaced with a frozen yogurt shop that some people fondly call, “Johnny Fro’s”)

83. Hit up Group Therapy on Wednesdays at Dunbar’s

84. Go bowling at Helen Newman Lanes (Cornell’s very own bowling alley right on campus)

85. Hand out quartercards on Ho Plaza

86. Drive your car up and down Libe Slope or Ho Plaza

87. Have a friend’s parents take you out to eat at John Thomas Steakhouse or Boatyard Grill

88. Eat a chicken parm sandwich from Louie’s Lunch

89. Eat breakfast at 2 a.m. at the State Diner

90. Males: Get thrown out of Balch Hall

91. Hook up with a freshman (Note: you must be a sophomore or older for this to count)

92. Go gorge jumping.

93. Walk to the Commons and back

94. Go to an a cappella concert

95. Eat in the Risley dining hall

96. Write a message on the wall at Collegetown Pizza (CTP closed their first location and opened up where Mama T’s used to be… sadly, we are no longer allowed to write on the walls. But I did at the original location!)

97. Sell back your books; use money to buy alcohol

98. Drink bubble tea

99. Eat a Pinesburger (Disclaimer: Do NOT attempt the Pinesburger Challenge. Though the burgers are juicy and delicious, eating four of them on what is basically an entire loaf of french bread in an hour is painful. Let’s just say the rest of my night wasn’t that much fun)

100. Walk to a fraternity party with your entire freshman floor (In my case, my entire team)

101. Go to a fraternity party as a senior; convince yourself you were never one of them

102. Get lost in Collegetown during Orientation Week

103. Get negged at a bar because the bouncer is actually friends with the person whose I.D. you are using

104. See a foreign film at Cinemapolis or Fall Creek Theater

105. Eat mongo at RPCC

106. See a concert at Barton Hall (I saw Kid Cudi. It was awful.)

107. Gain the freshman 15, pay $300 for a gym membership and don’t go

108. Eat brunch on North Campus

109. Do your Freshman Reading Project before you graduate

110. Fail your swim test, just for kicks

111. Tailgate for homecoming

112. Be a model in the Cornell Design League’s annual fashion show

113. Host a prefrosh

114. Request a song to be played on the clock tower

115. Get guilt-tripped into giving blood

116. Get asked if you are pregnant at Gannett (males and females)

117. Drink with your R.A. (I never drank with my RA, so I’m changing this one to drink with an RA. One of my good friends is an RA in Donlon and we go out all the time)

118. Make a chalking; weep when it rains that night

119. Sing drunk on the drunk bus (Though I’ve never quite sung on the drunk bus, chanting is applicable. My freshman year, May 1st, I was coming home from a Sunday Funday when word that Osama Bin Laden was dead. Needles to say, chants of USA continued until I got home to North Campus)

120. Meet Bill Nye ’77, “The Science Guy,” and give him a hug

121. See how long you can go without doing laundry

122. Go on a road trip to Canada, flirt with the border patrol, smuggle booze back.

123. Try to order pizza from a Blue Light phone

124. Go to the sex shop on the Commons

125. Get drunk on Slope Day, run into Vice President Susan Murphy ’73

126. Complain about the Slope Day headliners

127. Get tapped for a secret society

128. Go to Pyramid Mall, realize it is severely lacking, then drive to Carousel Mall in Syracuse.

129. Attend Cross Country Gourmet at a dining hall near you

130. Complain about your writing seminar to no one in particular

131. Walk holding hands around Beebe Lake

132. Visit the Sciencenter

133. Watch a soccer game at Mama T’s, crammed in like a sardine (As previously noted, Mama T’s no longer exists. CTP had better pizza anyway)

134. Get J.A.’d for urinating on the Law School

135. Hook up with someone randomly and then see them every day afterward (Oops)

136. Go to a coffee house in JAM

137. See how many people you can cram into your dorm room

138. Watch people play Dance Dance Revolution in Appel

139. Write dirty messages with rocks in the gorge

140. Ride a horse at Oxley Equestrian Center

141. Ring the giant bell in the Plantations

142. Crash a political rally on Ho Plaza

143. Do the COE ropes course

144. Attend a show at the State Theatre

145. Prank call the CIT HelpDesk

146. Wake up at 7 a.m. for CoursEnroll; realize that your choice classes are full anyway  (Damn you, Oracle and PeopleSoft)

147. Ski at Greek Peak

148. Take a night prelim near the vet school, walk back in the dark

149. Trespass on Alumni Fields

150. Ask Uncle Ezra a question

151. Take the BASICS program

152. Walk to class in the snow, uphill both ways

153. Buy a Cornell-grown apple from a vending machine

154. Furnish an apartment entirely with items from the Dump & Run

155. Eat at each dining hall at least once

156. Ask for an extension on a term paper

157. Take part in Holi and get colorful

158. Prepare to pull an all-nighter in the Uris Library Cocktail Lounge by drinking three Mountain Dews and two cups of coffee, then eating a handful of No-Doz; accomplish nothing due to an inability to sit still

159. Tell a professor what you really think of his/her class

160. Attend a Sun organizational meeting: Go to cornellsun.com for details

161. Climb all 161 steps to the top of McGraw Tower

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3 Comments on “161 Things”

  1. ˻ neo ˺ says:

    you have got really cool bunch of to do list. Even if you manage to do 75% of them (cross off one item from the bucket list), it would be really amazing.


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