Sunday, May 20, 2018
Last updated: 3 years ago

Welcome to the Social Club

How we really feel about what's happening at UBC, and other idle gossip

Bean around campus: The five best coffee shops at UBC

Photo Kosta Prodanovic / The Ubyssey

Photo Kosta Prodanovic / The Ubyssey

With the start of school comes sleepless nights and early mornings —- as such, getting your daily caffeine dose has never been more important. If you’re bored with the obvious choices like Starbucks, Blenz and Tim Hortons, there are a few more private and noteworthy coffee places you should check out.

The Beanery

In the heart of a little foreign village, commonly referred to as the Fairview Residence, lies the two story coffee house, which feels like a home you never knew you had. If you are a fan of Friends, this is as close to Central Perk as you are going to get on campus. The coffee is okay — similar to other more mainstream coffee shops on campus, but it comes in different varieties with an element of yummy pastry.


Photo Evelina Tolstykh / The Ubyssey

Photo Evelina Tolstykh / The Ubyssey

Bean Around The World

I love the barn-ish feel of this place. If you want to escape the constant rush of UBC, head down Main Mall and enter this cozy, modern, coffee-serving heaven. Their brewed coffee (which they roast themselves) is very good, and their espresso-based drinks are so delicious that you can’t help but pop in for refills once in a while. Overall, a great place to study and relax. Did I mention they serve alcohol?


Photo Kosta Prodanovic / The Ubyssey

Photo Kosta Prodanovic / The Ubyssey



New to the UBC café scene is Loafe. With the opening of the new Student Union Building, Loafe found its home in the Alumini Centre. My friends have been talking about this place, so I headed down there to check what the fuss is all about. Besides the shiny new interior, they have very good food! As for the coffee, the Vancouver-based Pallet roasting company provides this café with beans, and the flat white I had was just as good the competition listed.


Photo Kosta Prodanovic / The Ubyssey

Photo Kosta Prodanovic / The Ubyssey

Great Dane

Tucked away behind Walter Gage sits a small shop with some seriously good coffee. I ordered an espresso shot, and I must say Bows & Arrows Roasters (their coffee roasters and suppliers) are doing something right! If you’re into strong coffee, this is definitely the place to come. As for the milky and sweet drinks, they’ve got those too, with a wide range of lattes and chai lattes (try the Masala Chai).


File photo Mackenzie Walker / The Ubyssey

File photo Mackenzie Walker / The Ubyssey

The Boulevard

Conveniently located by the bus loop on University Boulevard, this modern coffee shop has your back when it comes to staying awake. With a wide variety of cold and hot beverages and a bevy of snacks displayed as you walk in, this place takes the number one spot. On my little hunt in search of the best coffee, their flat white mini latte was the hands-down favourite. Bonus points for roasting the coffee themselves! For those with a sweet tooth, I’ve heard their Vietnamese latte is killer.


Photo Kosta Prodanovic / The Ubyssey

Photo Kosta Prodanovic / The Ubyssey

Airing of Grievances: UBC edition


Ubyssey editors spend a lot of time on campus. As such, we tend to notice things that are wrong with it. The Airing of Grievances is a place to hang-dry all of those minor gripes that don’t warrant their own article. New additions will be added to the top as we think of them.

We gotta lot of problems with you, UBC. Now, you’re gonna hear about ‘em.

- The AMS insists upon calling the new SUB “the Nest.”

- The coffee lids at Lowercase don’t stay on very well.

- The concrete in the new SUB constantly looks gross.

- Construction and weather.

- Waiting 45 minutes for a squat rack in the BirdCoop during peak hours.

- The BirdCoop staff are some of the most miserable people in the Northern hemisphere.

- The Perch is overpriced and killed The Gallery.

- First-years.

- Connect.

- Nobody will tell us what’s going on with the Board of Governors.

- Bike thieves.

- Construction and weather.

- The food lines are longer in the new SUB.

- Please move to the rear of the bus.

- People texting on Main Mall.

- The people on AMS Council who care a lot about representing students during the election period and not the tiniest little bit after they’ve been elected.

- There’s exclusively “local” food available on campus. Unfortunately, this is Vancouver so local = priced as if it’s been stewed in unicorn milk and gold dust for 300 years.

- No more half-price Fridays at The Delly

The seven best cups of hot chocolate at UBC

Photo Samantha Dadd / The Ubyssey

Photo Samantha Dadd / The Ubyssey

With the weather getting colder and the true essence of Raincouver beginning to show, many more desperate dollars will be exchanged for steamy cups of hot chocolate in the coming weeks. The Ubyssey sent Samantha Dadd to some of the most popular places to get hot chocolate in a quest for the best cup on campus:

Photos Samantha Dadd / The Ubyssey

Place Vanier Dining Hall ★★

Cost: $2.51 retail, $1.73 for residents. ★★★★
Flavour: A very milky/sweet mix, not extremely chocolatey. ★★
Temperature: One burnt tongue later, I have discovered that this hot chocolate is way too hot for immediate consumption. ★
Presentation: Did it myself.


Mercante ★★

Cost: $3.75. ★★★
Flavour: Extremely milky and sweet, hardly chocolatey enough for my taste. ★★
Temperature: Perfect warmth, good for your freezing fingers and shivering teeth. ★★★★★
Presentation: Very frothy at the top, which made it look super cool. ★★★★


Stir it Up Café ★★★

Cost: $3.45 ★★★
Flavour: Just a hint of chocolate — unfortunately another drink that was mostly milk. Not bad. ★★★
Temperature: Perfection — warm and soothing but not a single burn. ★★★★★
Presentation: It’s always fun to watch them make it in front of you, but the staple white cup doesn’t do it any favours. ★★★


Tim Hortons ★★★

Cost: $1.62 ★★★★★
Flavour: Sweet and rich, it’s a very good and affordable improvement to any day. It’s understandable why so many stop there to get a quick smooth drink before class. ★★★★
Temperature: Unfortunately, I forgot to get one of those cup holders. So I had to run to find a surface to put it down on before burning my hand. ★ Presentation: The red and brown on the cup are complimenting colours and the shameless Canadiana could make anyone feel extra nice. ★★★


Starbucks ★★★★

Cost: $3.62 ★★★
Flavour: This one wasn’t just chocolate, sugar and milk. I’m sure they added a little something extra — something legitimate and authentic. I can’t put my finger on it, but it made me really want to take a photo of it and put it on Instagram. ★★★★
Temperature: I burnt my tongue. ★★
Presentation: Whipped cream was a bonus. ★★★


Blenz ★★★★

Cost: $4.05 ★
Flavour: Creamy and deliciously sweet with a hint of caramel and a whole lot of love. ★★★★★
Temperature: I had to wait a couple of minutes. ★★★
Presentation: It looked like the underdog, but delivered one of the best flavours. ★★


The Boulevard ★★★★★

Cost: $4.29 ★
Flavour: Sweet with a hint of cinnamon and every sip was greeted with the frothy sweet layer on top. ★★★★★
Temperature: It warmed my cold heart — I can love again. ★★★★★
Presentation: Words cannot express how amazing this looked. Its radiating beauty restored my faith in humanity. ★★★★★

hot chocolate samantha dadd

Faces of UBC: Who do you want UBC to make you?

Graphic Jack Hauen / The Ubyssey

Graphic Jack Hauen / The Ubyssey

Photos Arjun Hair / The Ubyssey

HOUBC Photo 1

Rachel Lau (First year)

I think the first thing is that I want it to make me more insightful. I think that’s the biggest thing. ‘Cause I’m a first-year, so this is all kind of new to me, and I think being able to be here with people from all different backgrounds and different stories … will provide a lot of insights and new views that I can take in.

[HOUBC - Photo 2]

Visha Thamboo (Fourth year)

Oh wow. Okay. Um, I want UBC to make me someone who is recalled fondly. So that, whenever someone says my name, they kinda have that smile on their face.

[HOUBC - Photo 3]

Matthew Loss (Graduate School of Population and Public Health)

Hm. Good question. I think I want UBC to make me a type of person that is able to be interdisciplinary. To be someone who can pull from various subject areas that seem disconnected and connect them to solve a problem that we all face.

[HOUBC - Photo 4]

Katie (Third-year psychology)

I want to be more organized, I guess.

[HOUBC - Photo 5]

Amelia Casciola (First-year Science)

A better person. I want to become more open-minded — everyone here is so diverse — I want to try new things. Just, like, broaden my horizons.

[HOUBC - Photo 6]

Charlie Hoang (Fourth-year math)

Someone that is engaged in his studies. UBC is such a beautiful campus, it’s hard to focus on the academics at all. It’s my last year, so I want to boost my GPA sky high.

[HOUBC - Photo 7]

Karla Perez Franco (First year)

A mature person.

[HOUBC - Photo 8]

Tobias Larsen (Third year)

Probably a better economist, I don’t know.

[HOUBC - Photo 9]

Philip Austrom (Fourth-year music)

I guess more driven and goal-orientated, because right now I have no idea what I want to do.

[HOUBC - Photo 10]

Sim Sidhu (Second-year geological engineering)

I want UBC to make me a better person. As long as I am a better person [when I graduate] than I am now, I feel like UBC [will have] succeeded.

[HOUBC - Photo 11]

Curtis Logan (First-year Arts)

More prepared for the world.

[HOUBC - Photo 12]

Aisha Lakhdhir (First-year)

A person that is well-rounded, grounded, and makes good choices intellectually, extra-curricularly and socially.

The AMS got their scissors

It's unclear whether or not plans are in motion to purchase a giant rock and a giant piece of paper. File photo Kosta Prodanovic / The Ubyssey

It’s unclear whether or not plans are in motion to purchase a giant rock and a giant piece of paper. File photo Kosta Prodanovic / The Ubyssey

New SUB Community Engagement Coordinator Rae Berilea has bought a pair of giant ceremonial scissors from Party Bazaar for $100.


The AMS didn’t get to keep the original pair of scissors, but Berilea was able to buy a different set of shears.

“It took a while, but the company was able to find another pair,” said Berilea in a Facebook message.

Thank God.

She added that, according to the original terms of rental, the AMS had to return the original scissors to Party Bazaar. The Ubyssey would like to congratulate the AMS on their victory. We can’t wait to cover our student government’s next cutting-edge endeavor.

The AMS tried, and failed, to buy giant ceremonial scissors

Photo Kosta Prodanovic / The Ubyssey

Photo Kosta Prodanovic / The Ubyssey

AMS president Aaron Bailey expressed his disappointment yesterday when his bid to keep the giant ceremonial scissors from the new SUB opening ceremony was rejected. The AMS had rented the scissors for the ceremony, but decided that they would like to keep them. According to Bailey, the AMS offered to pay $100 for the scissors. “The company we rented from has told us they are one of a kind… They are unique and priceless, apparently,” he said.


The following conversation isn’t real, but it’s how we’re picturing it in our head.

AMS: These are very nice scissors. Thank you for renting them to us.

Scissor Company: You’re welcome. Could we get those back now?

AMS: But what if we kept them?

Scissor Company: No, you rented them. Please give the scissors back.

AMS: What if we — hold on.

The AMS execs rifle through their wallets, whispering excitedly.

AMS: What if we gave you 100 dollars.

Scissor Company: This is not how renting works. Please, please give us our scissors back.

AMS: We are sorry. Here are your scissors back.

Scissor Company: You have given us two butter knives taped together.

AMS: You’re sharp, scissor company. Here are your real scissors.

Scissor Company: We will never do business again.

The scissors in question. Photo Kosta Prodanovic / The Ubyssey

The scissors in question. Photo Kosta Prodanovic / The Ubyssey

Textbook buying etiquette 101

Photo Kosta Prodanovic / The Ubyssey

Photo Kosta Prodanovic / The Ubyssey

Trying to unload your old textbooks through Facebook or Craigslist can be a pleasant experience or a nightmare, depending on your buyer. Here are a few simple rules to make life easier for you and the person selling you the book.


Don’t be late. Just don’t. We’re students too and we very well might have lugged around your textbook for hours and commuted from cities away. Please respect our time.

Bring exact change. Don’t show up with a hundred dollar bill and expect us to a) have change or b) be comfortable accepting large bills from you. There are places everywhere to get change yourself, you’re smart and in college — take it as your own responsibility.

Don’t be flakey. If you’ve ever sold a textbook you know how frustrating this is. If you’ve made a commitment follow through with it.

Don’t lowball. We’re broke college students too. If you think a price is unfair, ask kindly for a price you think is fair. If we don’t accept it, move on.

Just be considerate. Remember that everyone you’re buying from is a student at your school, possibly in your faculty. You’ll be seeing them around — don’t think that you can be rude and never have to see them again. Who knows, maybe one day they’ll be interviewing you for something. Treat your seller the way you want a buyer to treat you.

Thanks, and have a great week!

The authorship of this article was originally misattributed to Jack Hauen. The Ubyssey regrets this error.

Faces of UBC: Commuters

Graphic Jack Hauen / The Ubyssey

Graphic Jack Hauen / The Ubyssey

Commuter students make up a huge proportion of our classmates at UBC. While the AMS Firstweek “Coffee for Commuters” event was happening this week, we decided to get to know a few of them. Every person we talked to had their own set of ideas, problems and aspirations, but through it all we learned one thing for sure: everyone knows what superpower they want.

Photos Lizzie George / The Ubyssey

Photo Lizzie George / The Ubyssey

“I’m really interested in the circus, so that’s been a lot of fun. There’s a great circus community in Vancouver. Juggling, mostly. It’s always fun.”

Photo Lizzie George / The Ubyssey

Photo Lizzie George / The Ubyssey

“I’m originally from Estonia, and I know seven languages!”

Photo Lizzie George / The Ubyssey

Photo Lizzie George / The Ubyssey

“I’m studying environmental science, and I’m really passionate about those issues. I’d really love to work for an international NGO or for a different Canadian government and work on those kinds of things.”

“And if you could have one superpower, what would it be?”

“Flying, definitely.”

Photo Lizzie George / The Ubyssey

Photo Lizzie George / The Ubyssey

“I came here when I was 17, I skipped a year in high school. If I could have a superpower it would be element bending.”

Photo Lizzie George / The Ubyssey

Photo Lizzie George / The Ubyssey

“I’m a very open person … something I know I want to do is to manage music festivals. I want to meet enough people to successfully make my way in my career at UBC.”

iBookUnion: a student-run, non-profit consignment bookstore

File photo Will McDonald / The Ubyssey

File photo Will McDonald / The Ubyssey

iBU is a student-run initiative that does what they call “textbook consignment,” where you name a price for your book or iClicker, hand it over to them, then they sell it. 80 per cent of the profit goes back to you, and 20 per cent goes to the BC Children’s Hospital Foundation. If they don’t sell it, you get it back, no charge.


They’ve set up a store on the second floor of the new SUB in room 2528, and they’ll be there until September 15. At a university where textbooks are ludicrously priced (so, any university) this is another great option for getting a better rate.

If you’re lazy and/or want to feel good about donating a little bit to an extremely deserving charity, this seems like a no-brainer. Check out their Facebook page or FAQ for more info.

UBC is offering Microsoft Office free for students

A screenshot of the download page.

A screenshot of the download page.

Here’s the link if you don’t want to read anything.

It’s not very well-advertised, but it’s free. UBC Information Technology offers a download of Microsoft Office, including Word, Excel, Powerpoint, Outlook, OneNote, Publisher and Access (the latter two being Windows-only), absolutely free. Normally it would be $79 for four years for students. Or free, if you know how to type in “”

The only catch is that you have to connect to the internet at least once per month on the device this version of Office is installed on, and after you graduate, you can no longer use it (it’s not clear whether that’s honour-based or not).

Other free alternatives include OpenOffice, Google Docs and illegally downloading whatever the hell you want.