Here at UR, winter isn’t just a season, it’s a full-blown snow-lympics. Forget our Division I squash team (which I learned about today) — the real action happens amidst the flurry of snowflakes, howling of harsh winds, and sting of icy projectiles. My weapon of choice? Snowballs sculpted not with mittens (my reliable Hestras, highly recommend), but with the steely focus of a champion ice sculptor (of course you can see my trophies! Let me just… *runs away*). My targets? Anyone foolish enough to stand within a snowball’s throw of my arctic arsenal.

This year, the snow gods saw fit to bless us with enough powder to build like a regular sized snowman. It actually wasn’t that much. Maybe like a foot. But let me tell you, regardless of the quantity of building materials, snow fort construction is not for the faint of heart. I went the whole nine yards. That shit had battlements. Turrets! It was my french riviera castle dream seen daylight (more like graylight if I’m honest).

My first battle of the season started with me marching up and down the quad conscripting snowflakes to my battalion while. my roommate, bless their naïve soul, sat sipping their venti iced coffee (why iced in the middle of winter, I’ll never understand) like it was all fun and games. Little did they know, I was training, molding my snowballs into weapons of mass intimidation. This is serious business.

My first target was Mark (what a name), the idiot who dared to challenge my fort-building prowess. His snow fortress looked like a kindergartener’s sandcastle after a high tide, and let’s just say my snowballs soon erased what little he had constructed. He surrendered with a sob, (looking like a snowman himself after I was done with him) leaving me the undisputed Snow King of Rochester.

But victory, as ever, was a lonely throne. My friends avoided me like the plague. My snowball-induced reign of terror had left me in a social tundra of my own creation, surrounded by icy silence and the accusatory stares of melting snowmen.

So, here I sit, atop my snowy peak of victory, surrounded by the ghosts of snowballs past. Maybe I went a little too far. Maybe, just maybe, building forts and having snowball fights should be about laughter and camaraderie, not frosty dominance and frozen tears. Next year, I’ll try a different tactic. Maybe gingerbread castles and diplomacy? Or maybe I’ll just stick to snowballing squirrels. They never seem to hold grudges.

In the meantime, I’ll just melt away into the shadows, hoping my friends thaw out their forgiveness before spring. I learned the hard way: Even in a winter wonderland, there’s a fine line between a friendly snowball fight and a snowmageddon of hurt feelings.

And remember, folks, when it comes to snowball warfare, keep it fun, keep it friendly, and for the love of all things snow-covered, leave the competitive spirit at the bottom of the Sue B. hill after sledding. Unless, of course, you want to end up the Snow King of Solitude. 

Some people weren’t built to battle it out like I am. If you would like to challenge my reign, DM me (@bachmann.elena) on Instagram. I’ll try not to make you cry.

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