Mosaic / September 24, 2013

Seven things you need for the next fire alarm

If you’ve been in the Quads in the last few days (or few years), you’ve experienced the shrill, shrieking sounds of fire alarms that seem to go off every few hours.

Odds are, there will be another fire alarm in the next few days. This time, be prepared by grabbing these seven things on your way out.

  1. Your cell phone. It’s always good to have on you, real fire or not.
  2. Your laptop. Now is as good a time as any to start on a term paper. This also gives you an opportunity to live tweet from your designated meeting place.
  3. Shoes. If the grass is wet or you’re told to evacuate the premises, you’ll be glad you were wearing them.
  4. Keys. Because no one wants to be forced outside by a fire drill and then proceed to be locked out the dorm and call Campus Safety again.
  5. A Frisbee. Yarn and knitting needles. The New Yorker. “Atlas Shrugged” (who knows how long you’ll be out there). Keep yourself occupied while you wait for Campus Safety. You’ll want to tune out all the people whining about how this is cutting into their study/sleep/”me” time.
  6. Something to keep you warm. Grab your bedspread or a coat. Fire drills seem to always happen on the coldest nights.
  7. Food. Sharing a tub of ice cream and a few spoons with other miserable strangers is a great opportunity to make friends with the people in your neighborhood.

To avoid inconvenience or embarrassment, avoid showering or sleeping. Ever. You never know when the next piercing alarm could go off again.

Kate Mishkin
Kate Mishkin is a senior majoring in English literature and minoring in journalism. She started working for TKS as a freshman and subsequently served as managing editor, co-news editor and co-mosaic editor. Kate is the recipient of four awards from the Illinois College Press Association for news and feature stories and one award from the Associated Collegiate Press. She won the Theodore Hazen Kimble Prize in 2015 and 2014 and the Ida M. Tarbell Prize in Investigate Journalism in 2014. She has interned at FILTER Magazine, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and WGIL radio and the Virginian-Pilot.

Twitter: @KateMishkin

Tags:  alarm atlas shrugged Campus Safety fire alarms inconvenience quads

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Kate Mishkin
Kate Mishkin is a senior majoring in English literature and minoring in journalism. She started working for TKS as a freshman and subsequently served as managing editor, co-news editor and co-mosaic editor. Kate is the recipient of four awards from the Illinois College Press Association for news and feature stories and one award from the Associated Collegiate Press. She won the Theodore Hazen Kimble Prize in 2015 and 2014 and the Ida M. Tarbell Prize in Investigate Journalism in 2014. She has interned at FILTER Magazine, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette and WGIL radio and the Virginian-Pilot. Twitter: @KateMishkin




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  • Class of 2013

    It isn’t hard to smoke outside. Silly underclassmen should learn to manage their addictions or just do it outside. Anyone saying they were “ironing their hair, or cooking popcorn and it went off” are just lying to campus safety

    • Someone older than you

      Actually, the fire alarms in the quads do go off for ridiculous reasons. Like someone taking too hot of a shower. Or ironing their hair (if it isn’t completely dry). So yeah, grab a jacket.



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