#ColgateProblems: No More Mr. Ice Guy


It’s January. That means the charming frost that sprinkled the holiday season has reached new heights of inconvenience. Snow is no longer a novelty, but rather a fluffy, white constant that makes you look like you have scalp issues. But this is nothing compared to snow’s wily sidekick: ice.

Ice is literally always trying to bring me down. Whether it’s the arctic Slip ’N Slide also known as Broad Street or that shady area around Frank and Stillman that seems too vertical to be fun (safe?). It’s a classic tale of “Man vs. Wild,” though maybe adapted to the 21st century to become “girl vs. icy concrete.” During one memorable finals week commute to the library, I inched down the steep hill to the fifth floor with geriatric caution. I got about halfway down and started feeling pretty good about myself. Still, I kept my head down and chuckled at the pair of grip-less Timberlands belonging to the guy in front of me as he braced himself for a potential downfall. Before I knew it, I made it to the bottom without being covered in snow and bruises. It was the beginning of a beautiful day.

I wish the story ended there, but like most Indiana Jones-esque tales of wild adventure, it does not. I opened the door to the library with the enthusiasm of 1,000 first-years. Eager to attack my studies and flying high from my dancer-like grace that kept me upright, I walked down the stairs only to meet my downfall. As if the floor was lovingly coated with a generous helping of butter, I slipped down not one or two but at least FOUR steps of the fifth floor staircase. As minor injuries go, this one was pretty traumatic. Still, I pulled myself up from my bootstraps (probably where the expression came from) and tried to reclaim my body that all forms of H2O were so intent on destroying.

The girl next to me asked “Are you okay?” and even though my mouth said, “Yeah, haha, happens all the time!” my heart said, “I think every bone is broken in my entire body. I need to go to a hospital now before I collapse into dust.”

Unsuprisingly, the latter did not happen. After inspecting my wounds in a library carrel and copious WebMD searches, I was disappointed to find the outcome of my fall to be “bruising and discoloration.” Though I still proceeded to text “I think I broke my arm” to most of my recent contacts, it appeared the greatest damage was to my ego.

When it comes to facing the elements, we as humans are weak and puny and don’t stand a chance. We stand so mighty, on our elevated surfaces in our Patagonia Snap-Ts yet nature finds a way to make snowy fools of us all. When it comes to fighting the ice around us, it seems the best offense is a good defense. Walk slow, potentially acquire some crampons and if and when you fall, don’t worry – from there, the only way to go is up.