Fire Code Violation Not That Big A Deal

Lexie Sharabianlou

I would like to congratulate one of your numbers for her courage in publicizing a heinous violation of Oberlin law. Alice McAdams had the gumption to draw attention to the appallingly overcrowded Cat in the Cream during two-time National Individual Slam Poetry Champion Anis Mojgani’s performance last Saturday. I was one of the guests and I arrived 45 minutes early. I too watched with growing shock as the Cat swelled to bursting with students. What McAdams did took bravery because, although her article identifies the culprits only as “the Cat staff,” we all know who they really were: fellow students. Some people might call her article the work of a tattle tale, but it takes moral fiber of steel to do so. What were those students thinking, letting in a number of people that would send Oberlin’s curmudgeonly Fire Marshal into conniptions?

I think McAdams should have gone a step further. I mean, why would these punk Cat in the Cream student staffers let so many people into the building? It couldn’t be that they wanted to share the experience with as many people as possible, or that Mojgani was someone who could bring you to tears (well, at least me), or to let you feel the incredible power of words and love and people, or to give you an intimate and heart-warming experience that lets you believe in humanity again, that this was a gesture of generosity and kindness free of ulterior motive. No, of course not! They had to have something to gain. Two words: Cookie Commission. It’s ingenious. Bring in an amazing performer under the guise of promoting poetry and make a quarter off of every cookie you sell. I’m sure the syndicate goes much deeper, and much further up the Student Union totem pole, than we could ever imagine. What if Tom Reid is in on it?

I bet that you, readers, still have lingering questions. Why on earth, if McAdams felt her safety was threatened by a 100 or so Oberlin bodies, didn’t she call the cops? Why would she let such things pass without taking action? What on earth was the point of that article except to hang her fellow students out to dry? The article is its own form of justice. I can imagine that the students of the Cat in the Cream staff were chained and beaten by the Student Union for their heinous actions, that the Cookie Commission scam has been blown wide open and that the Fire Marshal is laughing contentedly while petting his white Persian cat. A job well done, if I do say so myself.

Of course, The Oberlin Review can’t stop there. Why doesn’t every staffer report crimes they see being committed? Why not me? Yes! Me! I will take up the mantle. Like when Joseph Gordon-Levitt becomes the next Batman in The Dark Knight Rises. I will begin a continuing column outing the evil-doers lurking among us. There are criminals everywhere, violating all sorts of important laws that are threatening our safety! For example, the rule of two guests per occupant of any on-campus room or house. Have you been to Union Street on a Friday night? What about Splitchers night at the ’Sco? What about Trivia Night at Slow Train? So many fire code violations! How about the Ohio law forbidding five women to live within the same house? Three is okay, four a little iffy, but five – MY GOD! What kind of amoral lifestyle are we letting run rampant in our neighborhoods? And what about the law forbidding women to wear leather boots? I’m not sure how that’s threatening my safety, but if it’s the law, it’s for our own good. No one will be safe from my column, a list of people who have aligned themselves with all that is un-American. What’s that called again? Oh yeah, it’s blacklisting. Thanks, McCarthy. I will be unstoppable!

McAdams was very brave to put herself at risk of a stampede, a chocolate chip cookie scam and garnering the general disapproval of the student body. Thank you, Review, for keeping Oberlin safe.

But even after all that, isn’t there something else to write an editorial about besides breaking fire codes?

—Lexie Sharianblou, College senior