Reducing Your Carbon Footprint by The Quarto Staff

Here at Quarto, we’re always having conversations about how to be better humans and how to help the Earth that suffers at the hands of so many human and corporate forces. Below is a list of the ways our editors reduce their carbon footprints in their daily lives in order to be more environmentally friendly:

We want to know what our readers do to be more environmentally friendly as well. Please write to us @columbiaquarto on Insta & Twitter!

Illustration by Charlie Blodnieks

Illustration by Charlie Blodnieks

  • I always bring my own travel mug and water bottle to dining halls/restaurants/coffee shops where I regularly purchase food!

  • I put my food scraps in a brown paper bag in my freezer/fridge and compost them at the farmer's market on Broadway! (Thursdays 8 a.m.-3 p.m. & Sundays 8 a.m.-1 p.m.!)

  • I reduce my single use plastics by not taking plastic utensils/straws from restaurants and try to reduce my consumption of plastic-packaged foods!

  • I ask for no lid at Dig Inn and Sweetgreen!

  • I floss with string floss instead of the small, plastic picks!

  • I talk with my friends and on-campus communities about how we can make environmentally friendly decisions as consumers! (Like reducing consumption of meat & plastic!)

  • I write my representatives in Congress to urge them to support legislation that increases regulation of the corporations that contribute to the majority of fossil fuel emissions!

  • Recycle!

  • My long-term goal is to generate zero waste. Working toward that, I use bamboo toothbrushes, buy toiletries that come in recyclable/compostable packaging, use reusable produce bags for fruit/veg, and try to bring my own cutlery to dining halls. I'm also trying to be more conscious about where I buy my clothes from and what items I buy. Oh and I eat a vegan diet!

  • I turn lights off in public spaces (like dorm bathrooms or lounges) when they aren't being used. I carry a reusable bag and water bottle. I am trying to start waste-free Wednesdays!

  • I requested an extra bin from Hartley so I can separate my plastics/glass from paper products more easily!  

  • Use glass tupperware, ceramic plates, and metal silverware to diminish plastic use.

  • I always use a reusable water bottle, and I try and be aware of my heat and water use.

  • I am conscious of how much water I run and turn off the sink when I'm not actively using it!

  • Reduce plastic use!

  • Cut out animal products! Know where your food comes from!

  • Pay attention to climate policy and become an earth activist!

  • Walk barefoot in the grass and be thankful for all this planet does for us!

What are you listening to? by The Quarto Staff

Illustration by Charlie Blodnieks

Illustration by Charlie Blodnieks

We’re back at school after winter break, and as you all know, it’s colder than ever. This week, the staff compiled what we’re listening to on our way to class as we brave the chilly weather. We’re always curious to hear what people are listening to–from favorite podcasts, long-time music loves to the latest new releases. Tweet at us or comment on our Instagram (@columbiaquarto for both!) to share what’s playing through your headphones!

This is what we’ve been streaming:


  • Did someone say “Juice” by Lizzo?...Really all of Lizzo’s discography!

  • Maggie Rogers’ new album

  • “This Night Has Opened My Eyes” by The Smiths, “Carmensita” by Devendra Barnhart, “Generation Why” by Weyes Blood

  • I've been experiencing a Frank Ocean revival recently.

  • “400 Lux” by Lorde

  • Maggie Rogers' new album Heard It in a Past Life, Billie Holiday, Leon Bridges, a whole lot of love songs to keep my heart warm, and Frank Ocean for the necessary angst.

  • “Hunnybee” by Unknown Mortal Orchestra

  • Grateful Dead's “Workingman's Dead” & Noname's “Room 25”

  • Omar Khorshid

  • “This Will Be Our Year” by The Zombies

  • “Roll Some Mo and Karma” by Lucky Daye

  • “Sunflower” from the Spiderman: Into the Spider-verse soundtrack!

  • “Bookstore Girl” by Charlie Burg and the entirety of the Mamma Mia! soundtracks on repeat.

  • “Shark Smile” by Big Thief and “Sweet Jane” by The Velvet Underground

Want more recommendations? Listen to our staff-curated Spotify playlist! We update the playlist bi-weekly, so be sure to follow the playlist for recommendations all semester.


  • Still Processing with Wesley Morris and Jenna Wortham from the NYT. They're back and better than ever with their new season!

  • Slow Burn by Slate about the Nixon impeachment

  • Ear Hustle–produced by men and volunteers in San Quentin Prison!

  • NPR’s Code Switch

  • Borns

  • Invisibilia

  • Storycorps

  • I’m super into murder podcasts, mainly My Favorite Murder. I also listen to Last Podcast on the Left & Still Processing!

  • Buffering the Vampire Slayer

  • Song Exploder–musicians take apart their song and talk about how it was made!

  • NPR’s Morning Edition while I get ready for class and catching up on old episodes of the podcast Lore on Spotify

Winter Reading List by The Quarto Staff

After a long semester, we find that there is no greater pleasure than indulging in reading ~for fun~. It has become a Quarto tradition to have a book swap at our final meeting of the semester, where each editor brings in one of their favorite reads to share with our Quarto friends. We decided to put together a "Quarto Winter Break Reading List" from what went down in our book swap in case you need some inspiration this winter. Have a restful break, and we wish you a happy and healthy holiday season!

Illustration by Charlie Blodnieks

Illustration by Charlie Blodnieks

  • Annihilation by Jeff VanderMeer

  • Between the World and Me by Ta-Nehisi Coates

  • Black Skin, White Masks by Frantz Fanon

  • The Buddha in the Attic by Julie Otsuka

  • The Color of Water by James McBride

  • The Emissary by Yoko Tawada

  • Flights by Olga Tokarczuk

  • Floating, Brilliant, Gone by Franny Choi

  • Horseradish by Lemony Snicket

  • The House of the Spirits by Isabel Allende

  • The House on Mango Street by Sandra Cisneros

  • I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings by Maya Angelou

  • I’m Not Here by G. Wong

  • [insert] boy by Danez Smith

  • Look by Solmaz Sharif

  • Some of Us Had Been Threatening Our Friend Colby by Donald Barthelme

  • The Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner

  • The Sport of the Gods by Paul Laurence Dunbar

  • Tenth of December by George Saunders

  • The Uncensored Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde

  • When My Brother Was An Aztec by Natalie Diaz

  • The Women of Brewster Place by Gloria Naylor

Caring for yourself when stuff sucks! by The Quarto Staff

We are living in a time where unthinkable acts of hatred are occurring everyday in the news. It’s a time when the safety of our bodies and identities are currently under pressure. A few of our editors have put together a list of the ways that they’ve been caring for their physical and mental health and well-being. We hope you enjoy our self-care habits. Please let us know the way you care for yourself in these trying times.

Illustration by Charlie Blodnieks

Illustration by Charlie Blodnieks

  1. First, I usually cry, because crying is cathartic for me. I typically need to completely break down before I can form coherent thoughts about a stress-inducing situation. Sometimes while I'm crying I write, in an attempt to purge my feelings as messily and quickly as possible. I might reach out to a friend to distract myself from whatever hurts by soaking in the presence of another person. Occasionally I immerse myself in TV, or a book, and try to be fully present and focused on that activity. Ultimately, I usually find it most valuable to speak with others directly about what's causing me anxiety or pain, and to work through those feelings together, because it is reassuring to know that others are going through the same thing as you and that you are not alone in your emotions.

  2. I surround myself with the people that I love, whether that includes calling my mom or brothers or drinking tea/coffee with friends. Also, music always makes me feel more calm or at peace, so often I'll just turn on one of my favorite Spotify playlists.

  3. I try to meditate in the morning because it helps me clear my head. Throughout the day, I’m always thinking and worrying about classes, friends, etc., but those 5-10 minutes in the morning are a chance to just be rather than do.

  4. Sometimes I don't know the answer to that question, and I think that can be what makes the times tough. Because I know I can't always figure things out/feel better on my own, I try to be in the presence of those whom I care about and who I know care about me. I usually feel more positive energy afterwards to get through the obstacles I'm facing.

  5. I get out of New York and go home, or to a friend’s house, or into nature (urban parks, man). I take a really luxurious shower.

  6. Journaling, writing poetry, being alone and rejuvenating, calling home.

  7. I try to find moments to let myself breathe and get away from things that are causing me stress. I'll take a more scenic route to or from something, go on a walk to listen to some new music I've found, or take a few minutes to just look out of my window and appreciate where I live and why I'm here. I think taking little moments for yourself is a good way to center your thoughts and put things in perspective. A few minutes for yourself can never hurt.

  8. During times of high stress I buy a bag of Hot Cheetos, take off my pants (because I hate pants and find them oppressive towards my environmental vibe), and do something wholesome on my laptop. My personal choices are usually either watching Game of Thrones or reading terrible queer Harry Potter fan-fiction.

  9. Being okay with isolating myself when I need it. Even from politics, which tends to make me feel socially irresponsible.

  10. My therapist has encouraged me to think about what I value doing, rather than what I "should" be doing, when I'm feeling stressed. For me, this means prioritizing time for self-care (which often means sleep, well-cooked meals, Netflix, exercise, solitude, or time with friends), communicating with and spending time with family and friends, exploring NYC, and then finishing the schoolwork that brings me some joy (usually creative writing or reading). While of course sometimes it's crunch time and you just have to get stuff done, I try to give myself rewards for working hard and spend time planning ahead so I don't get into situations that are too stressful. Plus, music! Listening to music can make any difficult time a little bit easier.

Answers from our staff were collected and compiled by Blog Editor Alison Peebles.