Listicles, On "The Hill", Satire

7 Things at Brown That Are a Better Investment Than You, Apparently

February 7, 2017

Unfortunately, we cannot offer you any additional funds for the 2016-2017 award year. The committee has determined that these seven things are a better investment than you.

1. Untitled (Lamp/Bear)

This sculpture may have all the charm of a Coraline fever dream, the elegance of a carnival funhouse acid trip and the delicacy of a highlighter stabbed through the eye–but it’s still a better investment than you. This donation worth $5-7 million or one hundred full ride scholarships helps to solidify the university’s commitment to the arts and 23-foot tall macabre specters in the night everywhere.

2. The $15,037.14 Vacuum

The “Enduro-Turbo Clean Robotic Vacuum XL 50M Cable with Crane Trolley” is a remote-controlled vacuum that zips along the pool floor like a lonely bumper car or an alarmingly fast sucker fish. It may seem like a bucket of laughs, but it’s the pride and joy of the Katherine Moran Coleman Aquatics Center, it helps cement the Brown pool as one of the greatest aquatics facilities in New England, and it’s a better investment than you.  It also talks, so think twice about making fun of its dorky name to its face.

3. The Ratty Screens

You may not be able to tell what’s actually being served for lunch until you’re balls deep in the herbed turnips, but these tiny-ass screens that only show one food item at a time and read like the last line of a Snellen Chart are a better investment than you. By ditching the readable paper signs, the university has taught students how it feels to make a difference and combat climate change, how it feels to live in an increasingly digital world, and how it feels to suppress the panic that your vision is slowly deteriorating and your body’s just not what it used to be.

4. The Egg Tapestry

If you thought that the Ratty’s hip new screens, a fresh coat of paint and the space-age salad bar were a much needed diversion of this university’s resources, you will surely agree that the magnificent egg tapestry is also a better investment than you. The mighty egg tapestry and its seven radiant stock-portraiture companions reflect the good lord’s light pouring in through the windows as well as the university’s vague commitment to a healthy lifestyle, or whatever.

5. Legacy Students

6. The Mailroom’s Spotify Premium Subscription*

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The mailroom’s surprisingly lit atmosphere of bumping beats and early 2000’s throwbacks comes at a price, and that price is $119.88 a year. The sweet uninterrupted stream of music, unlimited skip capability and the assurance of never being caught slumming it with the ads is simply too important for the University to sacrifice. While the premium subscription may be just a small patch in the grand quilt of fiscal irresponsibility, it’s still a far better investment than you.

7. Those F*cking Busts at the Hay

They may seem like yet another example of something that’s old and white and expensive at Brown University, but those fucking busts at the Hay are still a better investment than you. You may not be able to reach them, but you just know those fucking busts at the Hay are the real deal; none of that Plaster Fun Time shit–we’re talking marble and chisel here. Their granola mom cowl-necks and fine European features serve the vital function of gazing upon the whole rotten lot of humanity. Those fucking busts at the Hay have the power to transform a library into a reading room, an office into a study, boys into men, tadpoles into frogs and back the other way.


*Despite repeated outreach attempts, the mailroom has refused to officially confirm or deny its subscription to Spotify Premium or any other paid music streaming service at this time.

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