Appreciating Fordham With Rob Falcone: On Unannounced Fire D...

The Lowdown on the Boogie Down | Rob Falcone | March 24, 2016 SATIRE

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Dear Fellow Students,

Thank you for tuning in to another installment of “Appreciating Fordham.” Fordham is my demigod, and I feel blessed to be Its shepherd, continuing to guide the many sheep (like you) who have begun to stray from the path. I invite you again to cease being a sheep and return to being a ram.

We all have wonderful moments from our childhood that we will never forget. I remember the parachute activities, practicing cursive, sitting at the peanut-free table alone, getting to first base that one time when I got hit with the kickball, and the parachute activities. Although the majority of my other childhood memories have faded, their psychological impact will remain. Of my memories, fire safety classes stand out the most. The several physically fit, charming, and handsome firemen that exited the truck and visited my school reminded me of the multiple fathers I wish I had. With every visit they touched me with their words of wisdom. One rule in particular they taught me was that when one hears a fire alarm, his primary objective should be to leave the building as quickly and orderly as possible. I have resigned my life to this scripture-like advice, and now regret to inform you, the reader, that these firefighters had betrayed me. They never told me that before exiting a building, one should make sure all alcohol and alcoholic related paraphernalia is hidden. Thankfully, Fordham has taught us this by conducting room inspections during unannounced fire drills and fining anyone who leaves alcohol in plain sight.

I try not to drink often. But, it’s not my fault Smirnoff Ice is so delicious. Even though I can’t do anything about my severe alcoholism, what I can do is always be prepared to hide the bottles and cans if a fire alarm should go off in my building. Thankfully, by having room inspections during unannounced fire drills, Fordham has taught me to scramble to hide my alcohol as soon as I hear a fire alarm go off regardless of the situation.

For example, two weeks ago in Walsh on a Friday night, an alarm went off — and it wasn’t a drill. Since the difference between an unannounced fire drill and a real emergency is nearly impossible to decipher, it took my roommates and I a few extra minutes to exit the building. It felt good to know we were doing our part to somehow make everything safer. Counterintuitive as it may seem, I know Fordham only has the best intentions for the safety of their students. Since Fordham’s rules and penalties are always inherently justified, I wholeheartedly believe this is somehow Fordham’s way of telling us they care about our safety. Even though the firemen from my youth told me a person has apparently a maximum of three minutes to escape a burning house, I’m starting to doubt that information now as well. Since Walsh Hall, for example, has thirteen floors and apartment style living, it would be incredibly difficult for a thirteenth floor resident to hide any alcohol that is potentially lying around and exit the building (whether or not it is an unannounced drill or legitimate emergency) in under three minutes. Fordham has ingrained this procedure so well into my brain that once in class I heard the fire alarm go off and I screamed, “Where are the Lime-a-ritas?! Someone put the Twisted Teas in the closet!” I didn’t mind the concerned looks my classmates gave me. I was  thankful Fordham has conditioned me to be like one of Ivan Pavlov’s dogs.

I understand students may see this as unsafe and unfair. For example, while writing this and sharing my view with one of my roommates he asked me, “What if the administration conducts drills solely to take advantage of students by using this as a way to collect even more money?”

I asked him a followup question. “Where the fuck do you get off thinking something as disgusting as that? If you’re going to be a heretic, just leave the school.”

He immediately silenced and left me alone, realizing the pure naïveté of his question. I’m sure he spent the rest of that afternoon thinking about where to hide his alcohol in the future.

In conclusion, I will continue to feel blessed for Fordham, an institution that never fails to prepare me for the real world. After years of room inspections during unannounced drills in dorm buildings, I look forward to the day that I am a victim of arson for unimportant and irrelevant reasons, hear my fire alarm go off, and know exactly what to do. I will tell my children to meet me outside of the house after they’ve successfully hidden all the alcohol.