The administration at Cornell would have you believe that alcohol is the greatest threat to your mortality while on campus, but studies show that this is not true! Here are 1,000 (okay there are actually only 8) greater threats to life and limb, lurking in Ithaca, New York.

8) Falling Ice

Every year, as winter comes to a close, it’s easy to feel slightly nostalgic for the elegant, dangling icicles that no longer grace the local gutters. However, one thing you won’t miss is the eyesore of so many bodies shish-kabobbed to the cold tundra. Falling icicles kill over 5,000 people each winter. That’s more than al-Quaeda and Jack Bauer combined. Even in winters as mild as this one, don’t be lured into a false sense of security. Over 75% of falling-icicle casualties weren’t expecting to be struck.

Luckily, there are a few simple tricks that can keep you safe from harm while the cold weather lingers. First, always be sure to keep both eyes on the sky when outdoors in order to identify any rogue icicles before they attack. Furthermore, avoid standing under the edge of overhanging roofs for prolonged periods of time, as this will increase your risk of death dramatically. Shish kabobs may taste delicious, but you don’t want to become one.

7) Stampedes

Remember when those gazelles were hauling ass through that valley and Simba almost got pwnt? Stampedes are straight-up, bad news, both in animated Africa and real-life Ithaca. For this reason, you should avoid campus protests at all cost, lest you be mauled by an army of rich white kids.

So what are the rich white kids protesting, you ask? … Uneven wealth distribution? … Of course they are.

6) Owls

http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=endscreen&NR=1&v=WJJX2-hehcc

5) Vitamin D Deficiency

For those of who do not already know (but you’re at Cornell, so you should know), you can avoid Vitamin D Deficiency by getting your tan on. However, in order to do so, you must actually have access to the sun, which we rarely do in Ithaca. In fact, upon visiting upstate New York, Winnie-the-Pooh author, A.A. Milne was inspired to create the character, Eeyore. While Eeyore’s pessimism is indeed a trademark of Vitamin D Deficiency, the long term effects can be much more sinister, leading to diseases such as rickets and osteomalacia (a disease characterized by the entire small intestine being passed through the rectum over the course of a fortnight). In extreme cases, Vitamin D Deficiency has been shown to alter the course of evolution, giving rise to both Decepticons and people who like Twilight.

So this summer, don’t read a book! Slap on a pair of short-shorts and tan those chocolates (the area of the upper thigh that men often neglect to tan). You’ll need to stockpile all the Vitamin D you can to make it through next school year.

4) CHEM 3570/3580

If you stand outside of an Orgo prelim as it’s ending, you’ll hear the most harrowing tales ever uttered by human lips: “that test was pure murder;” “it raped me in the face.” One eloquent member of FIJI went so far as to claim that it robbed him of his “butt-chastity.” From this and myriad other rumors of sodomy, to the conquering of countless would-be med students, Organic Chemistry is shaping up to be the next Alexander the Great.

Indeed, even those who emerge from Orgo with a passing grade are often plagued by Post Traumatic Stress Syndrome. If this is you, then you’d better be wary of our next cold-blooded killer…

3) Bridges

Stay away from them. Maybe pre-med’s not right for you, anyway. Maybe you should become an English major – your parents will forgive you (in ten years when you eventually move out of their basement).

2) TCat

Many TCat drivers exhibit a level of skill and regard for safety which rival that of the bus driver who plowed Regina George in Mean Girls. More like TSplat! The only thing more dangerous than being a pedestrian near a TCat, is making friends with that middle-aged guy who’s been riding one since Groton, giving the “wanna piss off your parents?” look to every sorority girl that gets on.

1) The Virus

Summer is just around the corner; and you know what that means: zombie season. Every year, right around final exams, these pests lumber through Ithaca while migrating back to Canada for the summer (because they deeply appreciate the natural beauty of Ottawa in June), infecting and devouring several unfortunate students along the way.

It should be noted that the lower levels of Willard Straight Hall have proved to be quite defensible during such times, as have the squash courts and the Mann Library basement. In order to avoid contact with a zombie, never wander off alone from your group, don’t draw attention to yourself with loud noises, and try to avoid being black or a slut, as documentaries such as Resident Evil, Gremlins, and Halloween have all shown these decisions to dramatically reduce your probability of survival in any harrowing circumstance.

From all of us at Cornell Basement, we hope you enjoy the rest of your spring semester; but most of all, we hope you stay alive! It’s not quite as easy as it sounds.