SATIRE: Fordham’s War on Color



The green and blue hues seen throughout the new sixth floor of the Lowenstein building have been a major disappointment to loyal Rams.


Ask anyone at Fordham: they’ll tell you they don’t see color.

I do.

There’s a problem at Fordham College at Lincoln Center. It’s stained into our very walls and confronts us no matter where we turn. It has painted our school as a place of confusion, turmoil and discord—and it’s a veritable rejection of our history. It’s time someone said something.

Fordham has a color problem. Maroon, to be exact.

A quick trip to Fordham’s website (or asking the nearest Jesuit) will quickly reveal that Fordham’s school color is indisputably, undeniably maroon. Not orange, not purple, not burgundy, not cordovan, not even claret. However, a quick trip through the Lincoln Center campus suggests otherwise, and the problem is only getting worse. Discordant color combos abound. We’re losing our identity shade by shade. It’s a difficult truth, but it must be said: we look like Bootleg Fordham.

Take the front façade of the Leon Lowenstein Center, for example—and how it’s bafflingly, bewilderingly blue. Prospective students gathered for tours must be constantly confused: is this Fordham, or some azure knock-off? Of course, the color dysphoria compounds as any comprehensive Fordham visit continues through our more updated underground passageways sporting the latest in inoffensive, wall-to-wall gray hues. The deafening assault on the senses is truly exhilarating; a visual representation of Fresh Air with Terry Gross played at full volume.

Or perhaps consider Lincoln Center’s infamous stretch of barren hallway affectionately nicknamed the “Green Mile”: walls behind the Law School lobby painted a head-scratching pistachio. I misspeak—only one wall of the corridor bears the offending pigment. The other side, blindingly white, reflects the green in a way that gives the casual passerby an impression that he or she has entered a minty liminal space between two dimensions.

I cannot paint this more heavy-handedly—the situation is bleak. The colors are careless. The last remaining stalwarts of maroon languish in the floors of Lowenstein, and cracking open a Sherwin Williams and vigilante-painting in the dead of night doesn’t seem so bad anymore.

But mere weeks ago, a spark of hope emerged: a chance to turn the tide in the Fordham Color War. The renovated sixth floor reopened, undoubtedly redecorated and repainted that quintessential Fordham maroon. Right?

The sixth floor, styled in the sterile, office-building chic we’ve come to know and tolerate, was in fact smattered in green. Disgustingly verdant accent walls and upholstery stretch as far as the eye can see in this sparkling slap in the face to everything Fordham purports to stand for. Great risk accompanies falling asleep in the new classrooms; one may awake under the impression they’ve been teleported into a hospital waiting room. The powers that be have gifted us glittering classrooms, natural lighting and all the fancy Dyson hand dryers we could ever want. But they’re not fooling me. I stand against the Green Agenda.

We’ve forgotten our school colors. It’s time we remembered them. Any semblance of cohesive identity (while bolstered by our single Ram statue) is gone the minute the last wall is graced in green. There are no intramural sports at this campus. We have no pool table. The school pastime is staying indoors. If all we have to cling to is paint swatches, so be it.

The raucous cacophony of color must end. Fordham has what it takes to reconcile with maroon and make a full recovery. But if fears that maroon is too far gone—that an official color change is in order—we are equally lost. Do we retain the azure signage of the main entrance or the verdant walls and accents of our newer additions? The grimy beige of Lowenstein classroom walls or the vaguely white hues of cinder block tunnels?

Only time will tell. We await the fate of the Fordham color palette with a fervor of college students with nothing better to do. Until then, I beg of you: resist the Green Menace. Reject the deep blue scene. Pray the gray away. End the Fordham Color War.

We are neither an office building—nor a waiting room—nor a minty interdimensional hallway. We’re a university—a maroon one, no less. Let’s act like it.