Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

A free and responsible press serving the UMass community since 1890

Massachusetts Daily Collegian

Satire: Things you should do on the library’s quiet floors

These quiet floors are not just for studying!
Daily Collegian (2021)

Editor’s Note: The following column is satirical. It is meant for humorous purposes. All interviews and individuals are fictitious.

When I heard the familiar cry of tin foil being ripped off a burrito on the second floor of the W.E.B. DuBois Library, I regained my faith in humanity. “What an enterprising young individual,” I thought to myself. Not only was it about 10 a.m. on a Saturday morning (God knows how he managed to find a burrito at that hour), but I was the only other one on the quiet floor at this time. And, logically, he chose to sit down right next to me.

This experience exemplifies one of the many out-of-body experiences you can find on the designated quiet floors of our library. According to directory signs found all around the library, these floors have a low volume, making them the perfect places to study. These floors are also great for other activities, which I have listed for your convenience:



Whether it’s a burrito or a Nature Valley crunchy granola bar that implodes when you bite into it, the quiet floors are great for chowing down in between classes. Be sure to bring the loudest chip bag you can find and open it during finals week, everyone will appreciate it. Carrots are the perfect snack choice for health-conscious students. You’ll know the carrots are fresh when your bite launches a sonic boom across the floor. There are paper towels and sanitizer available after your feast, but they’re just props. No need to use them.



Of course, your study time snacks won’t be audible with your music playing, so why not enjoy some good tunes. It is a feat of engineering that I can hear someone’s headphones from across the room, but we need to push this barrier further. Raise your volume! I want your songs’ hi-hats to convince the geese it’s hunting season! I don’t want No. 1 campus dining, I want No. 1 campus-wide tinnitus! We can do better!



Seriously, have you noticed that everyone on the quiet floors breathes just a little too loud for the task at hand?

No? Just me?


Taking things out of the storage lockers that are there for some reason:

Like finding Bigfoot, it’s a rare sight to see anyone use the mysteriously-placed storage lockers on the second floor of the library. Nevertheless, these potential members of a locker-using cult are out there. They seem to come out during finals week, the perfect time to loudly excavate. During one of these excavations, I saw a student pull a colander out of a locker. My years on campus have taught me that it’s best not to question these kinds of things.


Phone Calls and FaceTimes:

“BE BOLD. BE TRUE. BE YOU.” These are the words that greet you on our university’s homepage. And who can disagree with a motto like that? Being bold is possible here, and there’s no better place than in the library. Most students wouldn’t pick up a ringing phone or make that FaceTime call that just can’t wait. But we aren’t most students.

BE TRUE. When you’re on the quiet floor, disregard everyone else’s presence. Be true to yourself, not us. We aren’t here to study, we’re here to listen to you on the phone.

BE YOU. Be honest on the phone. After all, we’re listening. In fact, here’s an actual sentence from a call I had the pleasure to overhear: “No, babe, don’t listen to her! That wasn’t me!”

Truly bold. Truly true. Truly UMass.


Leaving the quiet floor:

After all that studying, eating and breathing, there comes a time when you have to call it a day.

“Wow,” I typically think, “What a great studying session! I got so much work done. Also, that egregious sourdough pretzel-eating a few tables down was awesome. I love the library.”

By following this guide, I hope you can love the library as much as I do.

Elliot Hajjaj can be reached at [email protected].

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